I recently had my first consultation with an Orthopedic Surgeon with a very close Family Member. He spent close to a full hour talking with me and explaining things to me. The majority of that discussion was not actually about the procedure he was recommending, rather about the body, how it works and how the current state happened. These are a few key points and I'll touch on each.
He started off with explaining to me how the Knee, hip, and ankle all work together. He used very common terms to explain how after years and years of use based on the body type things started to give out and that's how we ended up with a torn Ligament and Patella sliding around from side to side.
Take all this and mix in some arthritis and damn, things seem pretty bleak. Will there ever be anymore fun. It's not to much of a surprise that things don't look so great in the other knee or the shoulder.
Proper Use/Long term treatment:
Before even getting into talking about the proposed surgical options were. I was led to what he believed to be the 2 MOST IMPORTANT long term treatment options.
- Weight management. Staying at a healthy weight to avoid undo stress on the body
- Activity: Staying active, not exercising should never be an option. Even if I decided to have the surgery, after the first week, moving is a good thing.
He then followed up with a little talk about learning where the limits are and to work within them. Keep moving, but find the activities that don't cause lots of pain and possibly go with a little bit less intensity. Most of all it's going to be a guessing game of what can be done.
Now it's time to talk about Post Surgery Care
This one was key. This very nice Surgeon explained to me that surgery doesn't really fix anything it's only going to get things to correct places to allow the body to heal and find it's new normal. The post surgery action is as important to the patient as the surgery. He clearly told me that many patients really can't be trusted to make good decisions post surgery and they need the help of family and friends to keep them on the straight and narrow
The other big one is it doesn't matter who you are, the healing time for his recommended procedure is 6-8 Weeks. Regardless of how good the patient is feeling remember the body needs time to heal and it's not necessary to go crazy and get things hurt again.
From this consultation I'm happy to report that
- The patient and family are very comfortable with this surgeon and scheduled his knee surgery soon.
- The patient's brother is probably going to encourage him to make bad decisions during his recovery time.
Are you ready to meet the patient?
If you haven't figured this out yet the patient is my 9 year old Lab Mix Tahoe! Can you believe my best experience with a medical professional was with a specialty Orthopedic Veterinarian.
He made sure to let me know when explaining all the details he strongly felt all of his recommendations applied to both humans and dogs.
The entire time sitting in this appointment and afterward all I could think about was how I wanted to share this story with the people around me. It made me wish my own doctors appointments worked the same way. Instead of treating the symptom (In this case a torn ligament) let's talk about the whole system and figure out how prevent further issues and find the root cause.
I have a few big takeaways from this experience I would like to share with you.
- Start with Diet and Exercise!
- Sometimes are bodies aren't the most ideal and we need to work with what we have. As humans we have the ability to work a little bit more on this than our pets. We can work on our alignment, strength, and flexibility issues
- Rest!!! Sometimes the inevitable is going to happen and it's REALLY REALLY IMPORTANT to let your body heal.
- Movement Heals: Yes you want to Rest but not INDEFINITELY...give your body a moment to recover it's okay to come back slowly and safely
If you need help and don't know where to start visit us and we can help guide you on the correct path. Offering Nutrition Coaching, Pilates Training, Personal Training, and CrossFit.
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