Surgery is scary!

When we physically hurt ourselves, our immediate reaction is to take the least daunting path towards comfort. This is a normal, human response. So, when someone tells us we need the dentist for that toothache, or an orthopedic doctor for that knee pain, we would probably put that off till the pain becomes unbearable.

We seek treatment when the pain is sharp and severe and this is common. Think stroke, heart attacks, broken bones and fractures. However, with more chronic situations like arthritis, we often choose to manage pain rather getting a more direct treatment.

Do I really need a knee surgery?

When the doctor tells us an operation is recommended, the first questions that come to mind: “Do I really need surgery? Are there alternative options?”

There’s no right answer to this – only you understand your body, your lifestyle and quality of life to decide whether you’d prefer a scientific medicine approach, homeopathic or naturopathic approach. Maybe even a combination.

Knee operation – what you should consider

The most important considerations when surgery is offered as an option are:

  1. What are the risks?
  2. If the risks are high, are there ways to mitigate them?
  3. Will this affect my quality of life? Can I live with this knee pain with my current lifestyle?
  4. Would I rather adjust my lifestyle than opt for surgery?
  5. Will this better my chances of getting back to normalcy and carry out daily tasks?
  6. Can this financially drain me, or can I afford it?
  7. Will my knee pain go away completely, or partially?
  8. How long will recovery take?
  9. Are there any living arrangements I need to make during recovery?
  10. Do I have enough support mentally, emotionally and financially if something unexpected happens?

It’s also important to know that doctors will always be cautious with their assessment. Where there is an opportunity to rehabilitate rather than operate, they will recommend physiotherapy, or such alternatives. When there is no time to waste, and surgery is recommended, they will make this known to you.

Typically, doctors recommend surgery when…

Usually, surgery is on the cards when:

  1. Your knee injury is traumatic and life-threatening (e.g. your kneecap is exposed to the world)
  2. Walking is not possible now, and surgery can fix that
  3. You are young and/or will need your knees to withstand rigorous activities for many more years to come
  4. The negative outcomes of not having surgery is much larger than if you were to get operated on

There are of course scenarios where a person choose not to do a surgery and feels he has fully recovered through homeopathy, for example. Whether that is a possibility really depends on the individual.

I chose to undergo an ACL reconstruction surgery, but I believe anything is possible. 🙂