Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Drill

They had to put a metal rod in Mom's femur from her hip down to her knee and secure it with nails and screws. When they were through with her, she had a 4 inch incision and a bandade. I inquired about a cast and they looked at me like I was from Mars. "We haven't used casts in ages." Shows how behind the times I am. 

The first day after surgery they wanted her sitting on the side of the bed. With the help of the therapists, she did it. But it was painful and she let everyone know it, then politely apologized for her outburst when it was over. She was told the goal was to move to rehab in 2-3 days. She was determined to do that. Given she had spent months in rehab before for various ensudry breaks, an arm or two, at least one shoulder, the other hip,and her leg. She put it bluntly, "I know the drill.

Her nurse came in the room later, "Oh, I heard you did great in therapy, more than they expected." Mom was thrilled, a star was born. "I told you, I know the drill." The occupational therapists came in the room, "The PTs said you got up on the side of the bed the first time and did great. Are you ready to stand up and take a few steps?" "No. Good Lord! That would be way too painful. Just doing this was about all I could do.

"Well based on the comments and notes made by the PTs, I definitely think you are a candidate for rehab." "Candidate?" "Oh, you cannot go to rehab until you can stand up and take a few steps. We want to make sure a patient is ready and can tolerate any pain they may have." "And, what if they can't?" "Then we cannot accept them into our program and they will need to do their therapy in another facility - like a nursing home.

Mama perked up, "Well I think I can do it." The therapist looked at her. Mama continued,"Stand up, I mean." "No we don't want to push it. You can wait until tomorrow.

Long story short, the physical and occupational therapists were back later that afternoon, and in less than 24 hours after she came out of recovery from surgery she was moving into her own rehab room. Mama asked the nurse who was settling her into the room how long the rehab program took. "Well, it depends - anywhere from 3to 24 days, but the average length is 11 days." I could already those cogs turning in her head. 11 days, yeah right. They didn't get it. After all, she knew the drill.

No comments: