Be your own physician

No, I’m not suggesting you do home surgery. Nor am I suggesting you ignore anything your MD, surgeon, nurse, PT or other medical professional guides you to do. Do what they tell you!

But it will not serve you to follow blindly (ask questions if you don’t understand, or if you are thinking that you won’t or can’t do what they’re suggesting). But more to the point, their suggestions will only take you so far.

Here’s what I mean. The morning after surgery, a physical therapist came to my room to review the basic post-op exercises (tense & release the gluts, tense & release the quads, waving the toes towards & away from you, etc.). She told me that I should only do the glut activation for 3 seconds instead of 10, and that could do it as many times per day as I liked.  For some reason I found that troubling. Here I was with my printed brochure listing my exercises, and here was my PT telling me to do it differently. OK, so I’m not the typical hip replacement patient, so maybe she was customizing it. It woke me up to the fact that these exercises were not delivered to Moses on Mt. Sinai.

Another example: I became very fond of icing, but I wanted to know the optimum approach. How many times each day?  Optimum duration?  On one of my post-op visits with my surgeon, I peppered him with my questions, and he basically shrugged his shoulders.  The studies were inconclusive.  This drove home for me the message that I was going to have to take responsibility for my own healing process.

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