At SYNERGY HomeCare we try to write blog articles that are both timely and can offer helpful advice for seniors or for both professional and family caregivers. Recently, we were able to experience the feeling of being a family caregiver as my grandmother underwent knee replacement surgery here in Kennesaw, Georgia. We were very pleased with the surgeon and his pre-op instructions. He of course had her staying off her injured leg as much as possible without causing too much stress to the good leg. In doing all of this, we discovered how valuable a good caregiver can lend itself to a successful surgery experience.
Prior to the surgery, her caregiver was with her to help make sure the senior living apartment she lives in was ready for her after surgery. My grandmother and her caregiver stocked up the kitchen with light snacks so she wouldn’t have to go down to the dining room in her building if she didn’t want to. They made sure all the laundry was done and the linens were fresh. My grandmother went to the surgery pre-op class so she would know what was coming. All was in place and going very well.
During the surgery, there were a few hiccups but the knee replacement went well. My grandmother’s caregiver even came to visit her in the hospital. The hospital encouraged my grandmother to go to a short term stay at a local rehab facility and there she was able to receive physical therapy. We had caregivers in place that stayed with her most of the day and all night to help her with pain management and getting in and out of bed. Many people do not realize you can hire your own caregivers while in the facility. Luckily, my grandmother was at a facility that is very nice to local homecare agencies (which of course is why we encouraged her to go to that one). Staying proactive with the pain is a great way to manage it. My grandmother is not allowed to take a lot of medication so we were able to help manage her pain and swelling using ice and pressure. Her caregivers did a great job at this.
Her surgery was in early summer and now as the summer winds down, her knee is doing wonderfully. She is still in need of a lot of care due to other health issues, but her knee surgery was definitely a success.