Monday, October 10, 2011
All of the physical therapists I asked told me that their patients who had one knee replacement after the other said that the second one was easier. Not because it was necessarily physically easier but mainly because they knew what to expect and were therefore calmer. I fully expected this second surgery to go more easily. It has, for the most part. But there are aspects that are harder. A comparison: Pain level and sleeping: Out of the box the second surgery was more painful. But over time it is less so, or I am tolerating it better. When I woke from surgery the pain of the first surgery was less than that of the second. I was shocked at how sharp and intense the pain was. But, possibly because of the three-hour interval for Percocet, I have found it easier to bear the pain over time, and to sleep better. I have meds for the rash (and I know what it is) and for the restless leg syndrome, so getting to sleep is easier than it was the first time around. Moving the leg: It seems that walking and generally moving around is similar the second time to the first. However, I believe that the pain and difficulty of moving my surgical leg on the bed is worse the second time around. I wonder if the brace helped with movement by stabilizing the whole leg the first time. Swelling: It seems like the swelling of the leg is about the same for both times. I was unable to see the naked leg often the first time around, though, so my impression is that the knee swelling was smaller the first time - but that may not be the case. It probably is about the same. Overall, because I am sleeping better and tolerating the pain better, I feel the experience is much better the second time around.