Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Smooth sailing with the knee surgery

I went through with the planned knee surgery yesterday to have my broken left tibial plateau fixed. And the day was remarkable for how easily everything fell in place and how simple and easy the whole experience was. 

I want to write about yesterday's experience in detail as I think it is worth describing the high quality of care I got and exploring what went into making it so. 

The idea of a possible surgery to fix the damage was first broached on the day of the accident itself on Saturday, June 24. The CT Scans and the X-Rays showed that the damage to the left tibial plateau was severe, and required handling by experts. If it was deemed an emergency that couldn't wait, the emergency folks might have arranged for the surgery to be performed the same day. However, they referred us to contact an Orthopedic Surgeon for further advice later on as the surgery could wait.


The emergency personnel had given me a red compression sock for the broken leg. That item was of immense amusement for Aisiri getting her to sing "Polka Dots, Polka Dots" many times. 👶😂

Since I was not supposed to bear weight on the broken legs, we decided to not walk up and down the two sets of stairs to our third-floor apartment, and instead take up on our ground floor neighbors/friends offer to stay at their home for a few days. While it was complicated managing with two homes, it did help us immensely to settle down while I was physically impaired to move around. 



We met with Dr. Gavin Bishop - the Orthopedic Surgeon at Longmont Clinic - on the following Tuesday - June 27th, and got more details and confirmation about the need for surgery. The date for the surgery was set for a week later at this discussion. The medical staff went through all the preliminary formalities required for the surgery at this time and made sure we were ready with all the required information.
The nursing staff from the Longs Peak Hospital - who would be part of the surgery team - called up over the phone on the day before the surgery to review the surgery procedures specifically around usage of anesthesia, usage of blood transfusions, medications I was on, allergies, etc. They also made sure we know where we had to go at what time and what to expect at each stage. 

On the day of the surgery, my nephew Shashidhar drove me to the hospital at 6:30am for the 8:00am scheduled surgery. I was checked in to a separate preparing area for the pre-surgery preparation. I changed to a hospital gown. Used a urinal bottle to pee. Scrubbed my body completely with anti-bacterial tissues. Met with the different members of the surgery team as each one came by to say Hello, and explain what they were doing, as well as ask me what I thought the procedure was for. 

Just as it was about to turn 8:00AM, the anesthesiologist administered a powerful anesthetic (they told me the name before, but I don't recall now). And it was like a Television blacking out on switching off the power. The nurse did tell me that I would co-operate with them when they ask me questions during the procedure or ask me to move over, etc., but would not recall any details. That was indeed the case. 

The next thing I remember was being fussed over by the nursing staff back at the same place where I had zoned out after the surgery was completed - around 11:00am-ish.



The surgeon told us everything had gone well with the surgery, and that I would need 6-12 weeks to completely heal. I had asked about the possibility of undergoing a brain surgery in the next 2-3 weeks. He recommended that we review the progress of healing from this surgery in two weeks and then decide on the brain surgery. Sounds like a plan.

While I had not had any solid food since 10pm the previous night, I wasn't really hungry at this time. The nurse gave me two cups of apple juice and that filled me up amazingly well. 

We left the hospital around 1:30pm. 

One final problem we had to deal with was about how I was to get to our 3rd-floor apartment on bum legs. Thankfully, my wife was able to get help from two of the folks who work in our apartment complex. They along with Shashidhar - all three of them carried me step by step over the two set of stairs rather easily, and I am all set for rest and recovery from home over the next few weeks!

In the background of all this is the amazing support shown by many generous donors to the fundraiser I had started a few days ago: https://www.gofundme.com/help-prakash-fight-glioblastoma

133 people have raised over $35K in 3 days! That took 'financial worries' off the list of things we had to worry about to provide us with a sense of financial safety during all the hospital runs over the last few days, and has made it easy on us to take on the challenging aspects of this experience with confidence.

Thanks a million for everyone who made a difference for us through this fund-raiser as well as through personal favors and helpful messages. 

1 comment:

  1. I am not surprised.Amazing what is possible when you let go of the anger, blame and shame. I love you.

    ReplyDelete

The story so far

It has been a month since I decided to start a blog to journal my journey with Glioblastoma Multiforme after bei...