Southwest Orthopaedic Physical Therapy Information Headquarters

"GREAT EXPECTATIONS" Bilateral knee surgery – 6+ months post surgery

Posted by Dani Livsie on Aug 15, 2011 3:57:00 PM

*Please enjoy this inspiring story from one of our valued patients, Pat

"Ok so it’s been a while since the last update on my bilateral knee replacement surgery (both knees replaced at one time), and while I am not able to do the foxtrot yet- I have come a long way in rehabilitation thanks to the awesome folks at Southwest Orthopaedic Physical Therapy (SWOPT).  They were with me before my surgery and have helped me so much along the way; Dan and Steph, and Karen Browning, Physical Therapist and Leslie Boone, Physical Therapist, and of course Kale Isaacson, Physical Therapist.  They have become like family to me – in fact most of the patients who spend a lot of time at SWOPT say similar statements. That they feel more like family that patients.

The one word that comes to mind when I think of SWOPT is caring. They genuinely care- from the most benign orthopedic ailment to intense post-cancer physical therapy they show the same level of trust and caring. If I was unable to attend my normal workout session (and gave them enough warning) they were usually able to accommodate my schedule changes. They would always check on me to see how my blood sugars were doing because I have juvenile diabetes. You could tell every day that my success was the most important thing to them.

As far as my physical therapy and rehab…they helped me manage my expectations, which I found was invaluable. I thought my rehab and pain management success would come along fast and it would be linear in the scale. What I found was it was kind of a roller coaster ride with ups and downs, but over time I was always going upward in success I am definitely getter better.

pat graphAs you can see on the diagram to the left I thought my physical therapy rehab, decreased pain, and success would all fall into line and I’d be back to doing the Macarena in no time. I found that there were more hills and valleys than I originally thought there would be along the way.

A big surprise was when I hit the six month mark I started having knee pain at night again. I was seriously bummed out. I thought I was over that part of my rehab. I was finally getting used to sleeping through the night without my knees wrapped in ice 


I panicked and called my orthopaedic surgeon and he said that it was very normal to go through this at the 6-month mark because you tend to over-do things because you knees feel so much better.  That made me feel better- because I thought something was screwed-up and I had gone backwards in my Physical Therapy rehab. But I should have known better- The folks at SWOPT pushed me just enough to stay on my path to success but not too much to pass that point. They are awesome experts!"

Topics: physical therapy, surgery, patient story