Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Cruciate repair, allograft, autograft, synthetic ligaments. Ligament braces.
User avatar
Nat
MINIgeek (20-50 posts)
MINIgeek (20-50 posts)
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2008 7:37 am
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by Nat »

Great list!

I would add a walker with a bin. I gives an independence. I could not carry a cup or books, or basically anything larger that the stuff which can fit into a pocket, while on crutches. I've rented a walker and purchased a bin for it. Now I will be trully independent!

Another thing I've posted here some time ago. For my second surgery recovery I bought a commode. I had no problems with going to a bathroom during day, but at night--I often felt dizzy, groggy, and unsteady to go there in dark (I didn't want to turn lights on and to wake up my husband). I fell twice while going to the bathroom at night when I didn't have the commode.

Another thing I found useful--last time I loaned from Red Cross (and this time I rented) a hospitalover bed table, as I'll spend a lot of time in bed studying after the surgery. I can use it to work on my laptop, eat, and read.

And, the last thing for a long in-bed time. I found a zen-chair useful. I put it under my pillow at angle and it keeps me sitted comfortably in my bed. Otherwise, the pillows are sliding all the time.

Oh, another thing--i've bought a pack of pre-moistened wipes to reduce the number of showers. For a first couple of weeks after a large surgery it is quite a undertaking, especially if you are non-weight bearing and cannot bend your leg to get into a bathtub.

I had to replace (remove) sliding glass doors on my bathtub tempoparily to a shower curtain, as I wouldn't be able to get there otherwise.

If I remebmer anything else, I'll post it. I am getting everything together now, as I am having my third surgery on monday.
User avatar
fergy
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 6:55 pm
Location: Groningen, Netherlands (and Baltimore, MD)
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by fergy »

Hey Shanna,

I hear what you're saying, but everyone is different. Some people will have more discomfort post-op, some less. We all have different set-ups in our homes. Also, some people do their recovery alone, while others have people to help.

IMO, the list isn't meant to be everything to everyone. Use what you think might benefit YOU. It's a personal choice.

Personally, I was glad I had certain things prepared ahead. It made my life a LOT easier (as well as my family's). And yes, I still love my shower chair. The shower I use is really awkward, so until I get better control of my leg muscles, I feel safer using it. Anyway - why stand when you can sit? ;D ;D ;D

Thanks to all who have added their own useful things! :D

1960s-style go go dancer
Bicycle accident (not my fault, grr) 4 Sept 08
Left knee- ACL, 2 meniscus tears, MCL tear
ACLr (allograft achilles tendon) 31 October 08
User avatar
Nat
MINIgeek (20-50 posts)
MINIgeek (20-50 posts)
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2008 7:37 am
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by Nat »

Shanna,

I wanted to add just one thing to Fergi's comment. Some people here have different surgeries which require different time for recovery and different level of temporal disability. For example, after my second surgery I wasn't allowed to bear weight on one leg for two months. And the third month was a gradual return to stepping/walking. I wouldn't be able to manage without some of the preparation/home care devices. In addition, it gives me independence and ability to do something when I am home alone. You cannot compare little arthroscopic surgery with a complex one, for example High Tibial Osteotomy plus some ligaments recon.
I rented most of the stuff, some of it I bought--and everything was covered under my insurance. I'd rather use it and be independent and safe than count on somebody's help all the time. My husband is very helpful, but he is at work all day.
In Canada, if you don't have an additional insurance, you can borrow most of the stuff you need post-surgery from Red Cross for free. If you have the opportunity and the need, why not use it?

Cheers,
Nat


User avatar
feeny
SuperKNEEgeek
SuperKNEEgeek
Posts: 2275
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2005 11:56 am
Location: Melbourne Australia
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by feeny »

Not enough kind words can be spoken about the shower stool.
In fact, I had a whole moulded plastic shower armchair. Quite remarkably essential.

Sep-05 ACL rupture, Medial mensical tear, MCL rupture
Oct-05 Had it all repaired (hamstring graft, meniscal rivet)
-and then-
4.5 Months post-op Snowboarding like a demon
7 Months post-op Successful return to indoor soccer (YEH!)
-and then-
Mar-2015 Arthroscopy to fix meniscus
User avatar
bavage
SuperKNEEgeek
SuperKNEEgeek
Posts: 524
Joined: Wed Oct 22, 2008 5:10 am
Location: Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by bavage »

Kudos for an excellent list.
Certified Dietary Manager, ServSafe Proctor, Options Trader.           

AKA, The Curmudgeon
Shanna
Regular Poster
Regular Poster
Posts: 50
Joined: Mon Oct 27, 2008 2:33 pm
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by Shanna »

I meant no disrespect to anyone, regardless of recovery times and whatnot. But, for me, economiically, it wasn't wise or affordable to obtain and/or construct some of these tools for home use. I think others may be in the same boat. Insurance doesn't always cover everything.

I suppose that during my recovery, continual recovery, I have looked at things as temporary. And, instead of buying or installing things permanently, I came up with other ways. Just like I said with the hotel comparison. While it would be nice to have all your belongings at the hotel for the weekend you stay, the stay is only temporary. It's part of having a good outlook on my recovery and knowing the set-backs, pain, struggle, time invested, etc are only going to be temporary with a good outcome to follow.
4/06 injury, right knee
5/06 diagnosed with partially torn MCL and menisucus, opted out of surgery, now it feels 100%
3/08 fell, left knee
4/08 diagnosed torn ACL, LCL Meniscus, couldn't afford co-pays for surgery
10/08 new doctor, surgery scheduled
10/31/08 Operation!!!
User avatar
dancer49
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 396
Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 9:13 pm
Location: North Western New Jersey
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by dancer49 »

Fergy et al-
This list was unbelievably helpful!!!
I'm recouperating on a chaise lounge, which allows me to sit with legs straight out in front of me.

I'm day 3 after my ACLr surgery and these helped me the most:
1) Small bin of magazines, hairbursh, LIP BALM, WATER, snacks, fragrance, hand wipes, towel for moving leg, tissues, charged cell phone, paper pen, hand & body lotion. WATER!!! Cuddly sox, scented candles & matches. Thank you cards. WATER- (did I mention water?)

2) Stepper stools (2) I use in my bathroom to support leg for commode or in the living room or another location. (these were from my 'step aerobics' days)

3) Plastic bag to put things in when walking with crutches & need to transport small items. (Got tired of 'tucking' everything into my hip pants band!)

4) Collace (stool softener)

5) Zip jacket or sweater

6) Pillows to support leg, to support ankle, to support my back where ever whenever I needed one. Also a very soft blanket or two.

7) Cooling pads (4) I put one under and one over, when they get warm, I switch them out. Great idea.

8) Pre-moistened personal towlettes for women. Had hubby go out and buy more already! Can be used anywhere & everything - nuff said!

9) Two sets of eye glasses!

10) Laptop (Macs are best!! hahaha!)

11) A way to display small gifts, flowers and cards from well wishers.

Doing ok with old plastic folding chair for shower, plus suction cup safety handle (won't support weight but works ok to help steady you!) Used a new garbage bag to keep leg dry and another to keep water in shower-taped while shower door had to remain open.

Fergy's list got me started - I'm so grateful for that post!!
Last edited by dancer49 on Mon Dec 15, 2008 2:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Oct. 8, 2008 ACL tear
Dec. 11, 2008 ACLr plus 2 Mid & Lateral Meniscal Repairs
User avatar
dancer49
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 396
Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 9:13 pm
Location: North Western New Jersey
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by dancer49 »

Additional find!
I forgot to tell you! We have lots of "Turbie Twists" in our home, as they were a gift to me years ago from my husband. They are the small triangle shaped towels women use to dry their hair- he got them at a "As Seen on TV" type store.

Anyway, since the Turbie-Twist has a "pocket" on one end, it's easy for me to put my foot in it and grab the other end to help raise my leg up to reposition it places. (My doc says passive range of motion only this week till I see him post-op) I also use it to help me with my 90 degree flex and extensions. It's nice because the cotton towel is small, light weight and soft! It helps to also 'twist' the towel too, to secure my foot better at times.

See photos!
Oct. 8, 2008 ACL tear
Dec. 11, 2008 ACLr plus 2 Mid & Lateral Meniscal Repairs
User avatar
crumpet
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 168
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 10:08 pm
Location: east coast
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by crumpet »

Hey!

Don't know if I should ask this here, but I'll give it a shot, as the thread title is includes what to do before surgery....

I would like to do some pre-hab excerisizes, but am finding that my knee, torques and cracks apart when I even do such things as squats. I plan on setting the bike up on a trainer, but I'm worried that the force I would use to push the pedals would be similar to squat...thereby making my knee come apart.

Am I worried over nothing? Are there other excersizes?

~Crumpet







acl issue
User avatar
dancer49
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 396
Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 9:13 pm
Location: North Western New Jersey
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by dancer49 »

I had a physical therapist for 5 weeks prior to surgery-
I imagine there would be different exercises depending on injury.
At the time, I needed to build up the side tendons and my quads and hamstrings.

Some of the exercises included simple things-
1) Going up 1 step on bad leg, going down one step letting the bad leg let you down. Do this facing step.
2) Going up 1 step on bad leg, going down one step letting the bad leg let you down. Do this facing side step.
3) Using the wall as support (Shoulders to wall), legs out in front of you in a half squat (make sure you can see your toes EASILY- go up and down with squats.
4) Regular squats- careful- I was doing mine wrong- didn't realize it- but I was using more of my 'good' leg, and PT showed me how to do them 'evenly'- best to do in a mirror
5) Going up on toes with both legs and down again. Then just on the bad leg (10x each)
6) Doing a good calf stretch- standing 2+ feet from wall, leaning in with heels on ground.
7) Machine Hamstring curls (careful- this is 'open chain' make sure your docs ok this)
8) Machine Leg presses full leg- to almost full extension
9) Machine Leg presses just using toes
10) Machine 1 leg press using just one leg (drop weight for this)
11) Hip Thrusters - Get into the laying down on back, arms at sides, legs bent slightly apart. Lift your hips up to the second position. Squeeze your hamstrings and glutes at the top and hold for 2 seconds. Slowly lower your body back to the floor.
12) Good stretches - touching toes, full extension, toes pointing back, leg completely straight.
13) Doggie leash...laying on stomach, dog leash around my foot/ankle, bend knee back as far as you can, grab dog leach and pull foot further back giving thigh muscle in front excellent stretch- careful! Pull slowly!!! (Mine never did reach my butt!!! LOL)
14) I'd also do 5 min of stationary bike for warmup and then 5 minutes on treadmill -

After this, they'd do electrical stimulation (yuk) and gave me an ice pack for 15 min.

Really made me strong prior to surgery.
I know know after my surgery just what I can and cannot do- I know now how far I can go pushing myself and my swollen knee!
My knee gave out less prior to surgery- gave me more confidence going in to surgery. My knee made popping sounds here & there- cracking sounds- creeped me out, but trainers said it was normal. Heard it's normal too, even after, till swelling goes away completely. Careful and good luck!
Oct. 8, 2008 ACL tear
Dec. 11, 2008 ACLr plus 2 Mid & Lateral Meniscal Repairs
User avatar
crumpet
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 168
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 10:08 pm
Location: east coast
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by crumpet »

Hey..Dancer:

NOW that is what I call a comprehensive list! I think I can manage most of them... The mini squats are definately out...for me. I'm thinking that was NOT a smart move yesterday.

For sure...I want to make a chart for myself and be consistent, so I can feel like I'm really doing something.

~C:)

acl issue
User avatar
dancer49
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 396
Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 9:13 pm
Location: North Western New Jersey
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by dancer49 »

Crumpet-
This was my routine 3x a week at the PT office, but also did many of them at home too.
I was also told to practice balancing on my bad leg, the wobbling helped the muscles work together to give me balance.
Just stand on one leg- I did this a lot. Also, walking heel to toe like when the cops want to see if you've been drinking- in the beginning it was pretty challenging, but soon, my balance improved!
You'd be surprised how just doing the simple 'step' exercises really helped. Good luck! ;D
Oct. 8, 2008 ACL tear
Dec. 11, 2008 ACLr plus 2 Mid & Lateral Meniscal Repairs
User avatar
crumpet
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 168
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 10:08 pm
Location: east coast
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by crumpet »

Dancer:

I'm so glad to have a list now. I can work with this and revise it 'round to what is doable given my particular circumstances.

Its so funny that you mention walking heel to toe... THAT, I can't do, and that's why I can't wear shoes! HaHA.

If I put my heal down when I walk, the tibia falls out of the joint space and I wind up dragging it behind me. The clunking and the SWELLING I get from that is WAY bad, and so I never leave the house now.

The other thing that makes it hard to work out...is that I also got a bad ankle injury at the time of the knee injury so my ankle is not ready to hold me either. Maybe as the ankle improves?

I know...I know... I have a lot of issues!!!! LOL

Thanks a million for the tips...

~Crumpet



acl issue
User avatar
fergy
Forum Faithful
Forum Faithful
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 6:55 pm
Location: Groningen, Netherlands (and Baltimore, MD)
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by fergy »

You are so awesome, Dancer!!! Turbie Twist - 100 different uses!!! Who knew? ;D ;D

Crumpet: what you describe sounds EXACTLY like I was prehab. I couldn't even do mini squats at all, and I was a squat princess before the injury :) Squats and lunges are among my fave lower body exercises.

Please go easy on the leg press and hamstring curls if you're having trouble with the squats. Your goal is to keep the muscles strong, but you don't want to put too much strain on a damaged knee. It's easy to do this with machines if you don't have them set right and you use too much weight. Of course, it may be possible if you have a good PT assisting you. Not sure if you said you were going to a PT? I highly recommend finding a good one and even going just one day a week.

I used a swiss ball and some basic Pilates moves for a lot of at-home prehab work, but it's nothing I would recommend unless you're experienced with both. (PM me if you want more info on what I did)

DO set up that bike on the trainer - it's hard to go wrong with biking. Also don't forget your core and upper body. Strengthening these will help keep your entire body toned and hold you steady and upright. It's amazing how out of balance things get after gimping around for even just a couple weeks.


1960s-style go go dancer
Bicycle accident (not my fault, grr) 4 Sept 08
Left knee- ACL, 2 meniscus tears, MCL tear
ACLr (allograft achilles tendon) 31 October 08
User avatar
Plumb
SuperKNEEgeek
SuperKNEEgeek
Posts: 3831
Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2007 8:17 pm
Contact:

Re: Useful things both pre- and post surgery

Post by Plumb »

I never seen a turbie twist used in such a way. Grin I used a summer belt to help with leg lifts. I am sure you can do it with towels or a T-shirt you have no fear of gettting stretched out. The yoga ball post surgery for me was used on the bed as well. If you can put a large sheet around it you can use it as a leg press to try to bend your knees in. .. But please before doing anything be sure your not going to hurt yourself. Ask your OS on what you should and should not be doing. Sometimes you have to be non weight bearing after surgery and that gets most people into a Funk.

After my scope I found getting to and from the bathroom. Grooming and getting washed and dressed the Hardest part of the day. As tired as that makes you.. I find fighting the urge to rest all the time is a huge task. I might suggest to all getting puzzles or some type of craft project to give your day a bit of purpose and enjoyment. I found painting and crafts to be a great source of fun to keep me from sleeping all the time inbetween PT visits and getting up and washed and dressed for the day.. You are so done at times. Just doing the bare bones stuff.

Also you might want to find a grocery store that has delivery and a drug store that has delivery. Sometimes family is not around. Heck you might even need to have a ride to PT and search for either a taxi service or a handicapped transport service.


Note. Please remember that after surgery you can always loan out your equipment if purchased. Also you can rent.

Image
Post Reply

Return to “Cruciate ligaments”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests