A long time ago man used to succumb to all the natural suffering that he was exposed to, if he burnt in fever he had no other choice, if his joints gave away a bit early, he would be bedridden. But now the medical field has advanced in leaps and bounds and relief for almost all kinds of suffering is now available to us. It is now our choice.
This is the story of Mr. Krishnan, Mr. Krishnan, a highly active teacher, a strict disciplinarian, and a trainer of young minds, his youth was graceful and his persona exuded confidence. When he retired as Principal at the age of 62 he knew that he had made a difference to the world, but his knees had started paining, and he knew that he had paid a price.
His Morning walks though uncomfortable were still a part of his daily routine. He still walked his grandchildren to school. His friends cracked up at his visits to their homes. Life was good, slower but good. But the pains continued growing and then one day he decided that it was too painful to walk in the mornings, the pain was especially very severe in the mornings, he went to his friends home, but it was embarrassing when he had difficulty in getting up from the chair, he stopped visiting his friends. He could not play with his grandchildren anymore because the pain was extreme.
It was now four years that he had been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, a disease that eats away at the cartilage ( the rubbery portion ) between the bones of a joint. His x-rays showed that now even his bones were rubbing together and this was causing them to become deformed and painful the medicines helped only so far.
It was at this time that he met Dr. Neelam V Ramana Reddy at the Wockhardt Hospitals. He was suggested a simple total knee replacement, a procedure which would cost him approximately a lakh and a half. The money was not a problem with his sons in the US now it didn’t make a difference. But he chose to bear the pain. “ I was afraid of the surgery by that time I was almost 66 years old, and old people don’t normally live through their surgeries, I could live with the pain at least that’s what I thought, “ Says Mr. Krishnan. Dr. Neelam V Ramana Reddy Consultant Joint Replacement Surgeon, Wockhardt Hospitals further adds “ Age is not that much of a deterrent when it comes to Joint Replacement Surgeries we have operated on people as old as 87, and they have lived their lives comfortably. It’s basically the quality of life which is affected and this is what makes people opt for the surgery.”
It was one and a half years after his initial visit that Mr. Krishnan appeared at Dr. Ramana’s OPD. He was bedridden, he would not want to wake up in the mornings, each step was so painful, and he always needed support to walk. His decision was final he would have the surgery, “ I suddenly realized that I was not really living, I was crawling by hoping each day that it would come to an end.”
He underwent the total Knee Replacement at Wockhardt Hospitals, the operation lasted a total of One and a half hours, the two ends of the Knee Joint ( lower end of the Thigh Bone and the upper end of the shin bone )were shaved and the artificial joint was attached to these ends. “ I woke up in the evening the pain was quite a bit, but it was something I could take, I walked to the bathroom on my own the very next day, it was great to be able to walk. Initially, It was difficult to accept that the pain was thereafter surgery, but then as it reduced I realized that it was the post-operative pain they had talked about. The second day, the physiotherapy team was there to make me walk, they made me walk with a walker first, and then after a week, I was walking with a cane. 20 days after the surgery I was walking on my own, taking on the stairs was a bit more difficult but the Physiotherapy team was with me.” Mr. Krishnan was In the hospital for a total of four days, he underwent physiotherapy at home for approximately a month post-surgery.
“ They gave me back my life ” smiles Mr. Krishnan “: now my friends can’t even believe it’s me, I walk every morning, my grandchildren make me turn circles, and most importantly it’s my pride I can walk straight again without help it’s my choice”.
Dr. Neelam V Ramana Reddy consultant Joint Replacement surgeon Wockhardt Hospitals Hyderabad, further adds. “ It is strange why people choose to suffer for so long. Basically, it’s the change in the quality of life which makes these surgeries special. I think the magic of it all is that second or third visit postoperatively, where the patient walks on his own, the pride the smile its worth it and that is when you know he has chosen to live.”