Dancing in the Rain: Lessons Learned on my Personal Journey with PD (more at www.PDPlan4Life.com) Copyright 2013-16 Sheryl Jedlinski
As a person with Parkinson’s, I need every advantage I can get to help me achieve optimal results from the “bionic” knees I am about to acquire. This is why I opted for the minimally invasive surgical technique, over the traditional one. Performed through a much smaller incision, it spares muscle and tendons, resulting in less blood loss and pain, and faster improvement in knee function and overall quality of life. Barring any unforeseen circumstances, I will go home the same day as my surgery, reducing the possibility of infection, and allowing me to quickly regain control of my Parkinson’s meds, which must be taken on time, every time.
Even with improvements over traditional knee replacement surgery, I know this will not be a “walk in the park;” nor will the rehabilitation process. All surgery has risks. The most common complications of this surgery are blood clots in leg veins and infections in the surgical wound or joint, but preventive measures keep these rates low. Epidural hypotensive anesthesia, in conjunction with twilight sedation, avoids the risks associated with general anesthesia. Still I worry about the effect the anesthesia and pain medication will have on my PD symptoms, which currently are under control. My movement disorders specialist assures me everything will be fine, and she has yet to steer me wrong.
The worst part is knowing that six weeks from my first surgery, I will start the process all over again on my other knee. Rather than focus on this, I am trying to keep my eye on the prize. A recent survey showed 82% of people who undergo minimally invasive knee replacement surgery are very or completely satisfied with their results. What else can I choose that will give me these odds?