Eighteen hours after surgery

Wheelchairs ready

Dear friends and family,

Yesterday it was hospital admissions, IV, spinal anesthesia, operating room.

The orderlies wheeled Barry out of surgery with a new left knee in the afternoon, a brand new spanking total knee replacement.

What a long day it was for both of us, hours of waiting interspersed with nurses and doctors.

Headed to the hospital as soon as I finish sipping this hot cup of coffee and writing this blog.

Some of you remembered that we were off to the hospital this week, but a few of you were starting to get worried when I hadn’t posted since Monday.

Please don’t worry if blogs aren’t as regular in upcoming days–Barry will be starting a very intensive physical therapy regime and Nurse Kathy shall be at his side, cheerleading.

Oh, I suppose you want to know what the doctor discovered inside the knee when he operated.  His bone-on-bone scenario did not look good, and there was much more inflammation than thought.

After the operation he found himself on a machine that moves his knee up, down, again, up, down, again, always moving.  This new-fangled machine (please do not ask its name) helps rehabilitate knee replacements much better than only physical therapy.  So explained the medics.

We hope the old leg will begin to like the new knee.  He’ll be scheduling a right knee replacement, hopefully some time this summer.

I left the hospital last night–exhausted–how can waiting around make someone so tired?–before the torturerers nurses roused my husband onto his new knee to briefly walk.  If that didn’t happen before he slept–hopefully he slept–then the physical therapists will be around this morning.

The hospital staff has truly been so friendly and cooperative!  Everywhere I went yesterday, staff and families alike smiled so kindly.  Thinking very positively about Marquette General Hospital here in our Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

OK, just wanted to update you all about Barry’s surgery before returning to the hospital.

Hope all is well with everyone.  I probably won’t have time to respond individually to the comments, but will perhaps add some updates under the comments.

Off to see our patient!

Love, Kathy

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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60 Responses to Eighteen hours after surgery

  1. Kerry Dwyer says:

    Glad it all went well Kathy. No I didn’t remember – but then I don’t remember what I ate for dinner last night either :). My mum recently had knee surgery as well so I know what that can be like in terms of after care. http://wp.me/p1Ulur-gj Luckily after care is very well done here in France and included in the state medical cover.

    Take care of you and Barry.

  2. forestfae says:

    Hi Kathy, just this morning I was wondering where you are. A speedy and as painless as possible recovery to your husband, and do try and get some rest as well. Hospitals just sucks up ones energy and vitality.

    Take care

  3. So glad to know the surgery went well. Best wishes for all that is yet in store for you, and the best to Barry as well!

  4. lynnekovan says:

    I used to be an orthopaedic nurse (many years ago!), and our knee replacement patients took much longer than I suspect your husband will. The best bit is that the pain of bone-on-bone disappears as soon as they wake up from the anaesthetic! Amazing. Very best of luck with the physio. In no time he’ll be chasing you round the kitchen, you’ll see! Happy Easter to you.

  5. Elisa's Spot says:

    wow moving already who’da thunk it!

    offers umbrella for hospital stress

    yay new knee less pains!

  6. jeffstroud says:


    Thank you for the update on Barry’s Knee! Amongst all of that you found, light humor, you found a way to express yourself.
    Exhaustion comes not from the waiting, but the emotional whirl wind we place on our self before and during, and for some even after.

    Sending you and Barry (((Healing))) energy for when ever you desire !

    Love you!

  7. It sounds like the surgery went well! Wishing Barry a speedy (and hopefully not too painful) recovery!
    Don’t forget to take care of yourself, too, Nurse Kathy! 🙂

  8. Kathy – I’m so glad to know that Barry’s knee replacement surgery went well. I’m holding HeartLight (sacred space) for you and yours.

  9. lisaspiral says:

    Glad it went well. The only thing more tiresome than sitting around waiting is trying to have a life at home and one at the hospital. Don’t sweat the blog too much. PT will be very demanding but not as scary. I’m sure your sense of humor will go a long way. Will be thinking of you.

  10. P.j. grath says:

    Glad to hear the surgery went well, Kathy. Thanks for letting us know. Many people we know have had excellent results with joint replacements, and I wish Barry the very best.

  11. Robin says:

    I thought about you and Barry this morning, wondering how it went. I am so glad to hear all went well. Wishing Barry a quick and easy recovery.

  12. Congrats! I just had my left hip replaced and am feeling like a new person….walking without aids within a month and now, 2 months out, regaining a life without pain. It’s a great relief. Best of luck with PT and recovery.

  13. Brenda Hardie says:

    I’ve been holding Barry and you close in prayer this week Kathy. I remembered it was knee replacement week. Thank goodness the surgery went well and he’s already in PT. I know they make things happen right away. My Uncle just had both is knees done this past year. And aside from some diabetic issues, he has done wonderfully. I guess that “new-fangled” machine works wonders on the new joint. I cannot imagine what “painless” knees would feel like. Barry will have to give a full account 🙂 I know you’ll be busy being Nurse to your sweet hubby, so don’t forget to take good care of your dear self. Sending you love and prayers ♥

  14. wolfsrosebud says:

    may it all go well…

  15. Fountainpen says:

    Sending good energy for both of you!

  16. Dawn says:

    Good to know all had turned out well.

  17. jeff v says:

    Good luck to the patient and caregiver. This getting old business aint for sissies!

  18. Heather says:

    Happy to hear that the surgery went well. I’ll be keeping you two in my thoughts, and sending positivity your way. May the recovery occur speedily so that the second surgery is looked upon as a blessing that could not come soon enough. *hugs*

  19. Carol says:

    So happy to here that surgery went well, and sending positive thoughts of a quick and painless recovery! Just amazing what can be done now.

  20. Good luck to Barry and his new knee! And do take time to rest Kathy, even nurses sleep and day dream, go for walks in the woods, do yoga and write blogs 🙂

  21. Thanks for this update, Kathy. Good to know you are both doing well. I’ll stay tuned. Hugs and strength to both of you!

  22. Hello Kathy! It was thoughtful of you to let us know how it went with your husband’s surgery and good to hear it went well. Amazing what can be done today! A new knee!

  23. Lori DiNardi says:

    Thanks for the update Kathy. Soon, Barry will be feeling so much better with his new knee. My mom had it done and is walking so much better now. Take care of yourself too. Sending healing vibes ….

  24. Sybil says:

    I think the new knee will change things so much for Barry. Sending warm thoughts to you both. I think of you often Kathy.

  25. john says:

    The best is yet to come. All of the pain work and worry will disappear. Barry’s new found freedom will be amazing once this is all done. Keep the faith! We’ll keep the prayers and good vibes coming.

  26. Colleen says:

    I’m so glad all went well with Barry’s surgery. New knees are a miracle! It’s wonderful the difference they can make in one’s life. Please pass our warmest and bestest wishes on to Barry. Love, Colleen.

  27. sonali says:

    Its good that the surgery went well. You must be busy running around from home to hospital and back home. Make sure you take care. Best wishes to Barry for the recovery phase.

  28. Best wishes, Barry and Kathy!

  29. bonnie says:

    I sincerelyhope that Barry’s new knee will work perfectly, and the physio and that special little machine do their job. All the best to Barry, and hoping for pain free days. Take care of yourself too, nurse Kathy. That’s important. Blessings.

  30. rehill56 says:

    So glad to get an update!
    Thinking of you both with love and support!

    Que tengas un buen dia!

  31. flandrumhill says:

    What a very long day it must have been. I remember the day I spent in the hospital with one of my sons for knee surgery he had to have. Nothing close to a knee replacement yet I know the pain was such a shock to him. Neither one of us expected the ordeal to be so grueling. Those knees can be such sensitive spots.

    You’re both in my prayers.

  32. Barb says:

    Hope Barry’s up and walking soon. If I was closer, I’d bring some chicken soup.

  33. Dawn says:

    Oh I hope he’s up and out walking soon! Isn’t it amazing that all these people Barry has never met (and some he has I’m sure)…are out here pulling for this surgery to be amazingly successful!

  34. Hope he feels better soon! Take care! 🙂

  35. lucindalines says:

    Thanks for the update. Glad that things are good, better, in recovery. Keep you in our prayers for continued healing and good, better days ahead. Happy Easter to you and to all the bloggers checking in here!!

  36. Kala says:

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery!

  37. Susan D. says:

    Just loving you both and hoping rest time finds a place in your lives…

  38. Joanne says:

    Dear Kathy, thank you for the update on Barry. I had been wondering how he was doing, and took your absence from your blog as a sign that you were otherwise occupied in your role as Nurse Kathy. Barry will be up and running in no time! My love to you both, Joanne. xxxx

  39. Kathy says:

    Thank you all for your loving healing comments! Barry got a big grin on his face yesterday when I told him that so many of you cared and shared here. I want to push the “like” button in honor of your big hearts.

    A little update: He had a little bit of trouble with pain for the first night–but that was because he didn’t ask for strong enough pain pills. Yesterday, he improved every hour, but was always ready for his pain pill after every four hours. The Physical Therapist, a very funny cool guy from India, had him up & walking in the morning, a little walker stroll around the ward. Another PT, Amy, walked with him again in the afternoon–and by afternoon he was looking MUCH more chipper. Then he did his exercises, which aren’t easy, but weren’t as awful as we have heard. The knee-moving machine also keeps adjusting its angle. He was at 58 when I left–they keep working toward a 90 degree bend.

    If everything has continued to go well last night, he’ll be discharged today. I just got up at 5:30 a.m. and will soon be headed back to the hospital–almost a two hour drive. Must do some grocery shopping too.

    Again, thank you for the love. You feel like shining stars. Have a good day every one, Love, Kathy

  40. Heather says:

    Sounds like things continue to go well…yay! I simply cannot believe Barry’s walking already. Amazing. Astonishing! Hope he got to come home tonight, and that you got your groceries. (We got more morels!)
    Have a wonder Easter weekend 🙂

  41. Brenda Hardie says:

    I hope this finds you both home and snuggled in for the night 🙂 Have a blessed Easter Kathy and Barry ♥ I’m heading up to my sister’s tomorrow and will be back sometime on Monday. I’ll be sending up prayers for both of you over the weekend…for rest, for healing, for peace ♥

  42. Dana says:

    Thank you for the update, Kathy. Hoping for a speedy recovery and a successful surgery overall for Barry. 🙂

  43. Tammy says:

    Best wishes for your patient and for you as the caregiver! Take it easy and make sure you’re taking care of yourself also.

  44. Kathy says:

    Thank you again for your well-wishes. I am soooo tired, but our patient is home from the hospital (came home yesterday). He is doing better than expected and may be back at work by next Thursday. In the mean time, he’s doing physical therapy and icing the knee and getting around really well with his walker. Happy Easter to all of you! Love, Kathy

  45. sonali says:

    Wishing you a happy easter Kathy. May your home be filled with joy & happiness & good health & peace. May god bless you abundantly.

  46. Kathy says:

    Wishing you a Happy Easter, too, Sonali! And everyone else still reading comments…

  47. Sounds like everything is progressing well!! It’s hard to know exactly what’s going on until they actually get inside and take a closer look. I remember my grandmother debating whether or not to get her hip replaced, thinking that she was too old to do it now. She ended up having it done, deciding that she still had too much life left to live, and she is SO happy that she feels WORLDS better! I hope recovery is swift for Barry, and the two of you get back to “normal” life soon!! 🙂

  48. Kathy says:

    Everybody–well, most everybody–seems to say the same thing. Get the hip replacement done. Get the knee replaced. Life is too precious to keep gritting the teeth in pain… Thank you again.

  49. CMSmith says:

    It almost sounds like i wrote that post. It is exhausting. I think it’s the worry that does it. I was about ready to jump out of my skin by the time the surgeon finally came out to talk to me.

    Good luck with Barry’s recovery. I’ll try to stay tuned.

    • Kathy says:

      Christine, I am so glad Kathy connected us! Yes, I would agree, the worry does it. As well as sitting in the hospital chair (a hard chair) for so many long hours. And being away from home. And getting out of our usual routine. I will try to keep you informed–but probably won’t be writing extensive updates like you did. You will have lots of people reading your posts in years to come learning about the ins & outs of knee replacement surgery.

  50. Great news! Happy this part is finished and therapy is progressing!

  51. dearrosie says:

    Pleased to hear the operation was successful.

    • Kathy says:

      Rose, he’s still in a bit of pain with some swelling, but we’re hoping he recovers a lot more this week. Thank you for your concern.

  52. Reggie says:

    Thanks for keeping us up to date with Patient (or perhaps-not-so-patient) Barry. 😉 I am sure that, thanks to the devoted care of Nurse Kathy, he will be hiking through the woods and along the lakeshores with you in no time.

    • Kathy says:

      Wow, you really did dig back in the archives to catch up, Reggie! His knee is doing really, really well, but he still has pain in ancillary areas–such as his wrists, neck, etc. from walking with an uneven gait and using his wrists to lift him up from chairs. My friend, Ruth, who had the same operation within a week is having the same symptoms, so they feel better that they aren’t alone.

      • Reggie says:

        Oh dear, I am sorry to hear that other parts are hurting because they’re taking over the function of his knees… So glad he has a fellow-knee-op-recoverer to share his experiences with!

  53. Pingback: Patient Barry & Nurse Kathy: Round 2 « Lake Superior Spirit

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