Today I visited the Physiotherapist for measuring prior to seeing the Doctor on Friday and to judge my progress over the last 10 days.
Today a decision needed to be made as to whether the compression stockings were enough to reduce the post surgery knee swelling, or did I need to use compression bandaging.
Today going through my mind was the saying, “You can’t make an omelet without breaking the eggs!” or as the saying says above, you need a little rain to make a rainbow!
Taking all these thoughts on board I decided to reach for the positives out of today and not dwell on the fact that the swelling in my knee had not improved. When I say I am stepping back to move forward this is taking into account the effects of surgery and infection. The L-dex reading today was an improvement on ten days ago, from 34 to 24.8 and my measurements for lower leg and upper thigh were at pre surgery levels, but my knee, lower thigh and upper calf are another story, there had been no improvement in these measurements. Ten days ago my left leg was 23% larger than my right leg, this has now dropped to 22.6%, I need to check on what this % was pre surgery for comparison. Prior to my Lymph node transplant I knew that results would not be seen for up to a year, even two years down the track improvements can still happen, maybe by six months the lymphoscintigraph can show improvement. What I had not thought about was what happens in between? How do you work with post surgery swelling and Lymphoedema all at the same time? I guess that over the next few weeks I will find this out!!!
The positives from today were to find out about two new products that I had not come across. The first was some gloves made by Venosan to use in putting on compression garments. I have always used rubber gloves but I forgot to take mine today and had to go to the chemist shop in the hospital to see if they had any. No rubber gloves but some very neat stretch material gloves with little rubber bits to grip the compression garments. They worked really well easier than rubber gloves, so I treated myself to a pair!!
The second new product was called Ready Wraps, these can be used instead of compression bandages and are much easier to use yourself. I am told they are not so bulky and allow more movement. They are quick and easy to use at any time and are available for arms and legs…This is a link to a video..
Ready Wrap Donning Video
When I see the doctor on Friday he will decide what level of compression can be placed over the transplanted nodes to reduce the swelling in the knee. In the mean time I will continue my MLD and gentle exercise and although it feels as if I have slipped backwards at the moment, I will remember it is for a reason and to focus on the bigger picture, ahead when the rainbow comes out after the storm.