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Monday, November 14, 2011

Back to Outpatient

Coincidentally, I ended up going to outpatient therapy at six weeks - today - just as I did with the left knee.  I just checked my journal notes for that time, in May, and saw that I was at about the same place with flex and extend as I was with the left knee too.

I am going to a different therapist this time. I thought I'd try something different, see if somebody else might hear me better when I mention the gym and not get distracted as much while I am on various machines. I went for the ortho center that is in the same building as my surgeon's office. Same door, in fact.

I liked it. I like the machines. There are many different types, more tuned to conditions like mine. I used a step machine that is "recumbent" - I sit down while stepping. And I did leg presses while lying down. I suspect these types of changes enable the machine to focus on what is needed here. After a fairly conventional bike, I also used an interesting combo machine that let me do leg extensions (weight on top of leg), leg curls (weight under leg), and even leg stretches. This last was the most ingenious. You'll never see machines like these at the gym. I liked the therapist,too. He seemed a very comfortable person and he did not push me too far and he was encouraging. We started a low weights, which was just jolly to me. I like that. Finally he asked if I wanted to ice there or at home and I said let's do it here. I wanted to see how he did it. I sat on a comfortable soft thing with my head leaning against pillows (I was sitting up) against the wall, and my leg sitting on a pillow. Blue ice bags were set under and on top of my leg, no barriers. I managed it without too much discomfort. I guess I have been a baby about the ice at home!

The therapist - whose name I did not catch - said he'd like to work some on my right leg, too. Perfect. I want to get really good at walking nice and straight. It's quite a challenge.

While there, I talked to a guy who had surgery around the same time as I had, but he came straight home and had in-home care, then came to outpatient, so he had been coming to outpatient therapy longer than I had. He had developed an infection, which had to clear up, and then he went ahead, and he seems to be doing very well. I had thoughts that maybe I should have gone straight to outpatient after transitional care. I was concerned about getting rides, though. Maryann kindly gave me a ride today, but gradually I am going to try to do this myself.

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