Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Decisions

The doctors' visit yesterday was less than conclusive -- at least for Hubby.  In my mind, it was a "done deal" -- but I've been on favoring knee replacement surgery for the last four years.

The Baker's Cyst is gone -- probably broken into tiny pieces by Hubby's insistence on exercising through this whole ordeal.  At least that's what the doctor thinks has happened.  But the left knee is still incredibly swollen, he has terrific back pain, and he's a limping heap of utter misery. 

Our favorite intern (Hubby goes to a clinic with student doctors but everything is run past "the big guns") brought in the senior physicians to look at Hubby, then they went and found the doctor who had already had two knee replacements himself.  The doctor flexed the knees, jumped up and down, said, "This surgery has had really great success and has been improved on yearly.  DO IT!" 

Initially Hubby gave a "N O !  NEVER!" response.  After 20 minutes of discussion his head was on his chest, the stubborn look was still in his face, but he agreed, reluctantly, to think about the surgery. 

The choices at this stage are simple:  replace the knees or live on high dosages of pain medication that will turn him into an addict.  That's it.  Choose. 

Then we were turned over to the X-ray technicians and the vampires who draw vials of blood.  We were there for five boringly long hours. 

Next up -- orthopedic surgeon appointments.  Whether or not Hubby will commit to this surgery remains up in the air.  I'm a strong advocate but I don't know what may be final decision.  Hubby has to go into this with a positive attitude.  I've said, "It can''t get worse, can it?  You're utterly miserable.  You can't walk now -- the only thing that could happen is that after the surgery you can't walk at all.  No change.  Or you could die.  That's a possibility, but not likely.  In this worst case, do you want to live like you are now?"  And the answer for him is a resounding "No!"

If we choose the surgery, then all the meds will have to change -- especially the Warfarin.  But the doctor has already explained what the alternatives will be for a time and I think we can successfully do it. 

Meanwhile, I continue to haul trash, do the shopping, walk the dogs, and feel entirely put upon.  I want a functioning Hubby back in good form.  

What fun the future of retirement holds . . .

4 comments:

Donna said...

If he's in that much pain, he should go for replacement! What does he have to lose? Only the pain.

Melissa Wiggins said...

Exactly what I'm telling him -- but you know how stubborn some men can be! MGW

Margaret said...

Men specialize in stubborn!! The choice seems very clear to me. I know what you mean about those golden years. Mine are looking sucky as well. We didn't get a good report from the last CT and he'll change chemo as soon as possible. :(

snugpug said...

I know that feeling too well of having to step up and do the heavy lifting when half the (human) household becomes incapacitated. It can only be partially eased by the noselicks of two Schnauzers. :) Sending you and hubby love, strength and healing thoughts.