Quick Knee Surgery Recovery
Coach Dave’s Total Knee Replacement
This interview was conducted by Mary Elliott. Click the Play Button above to listen to the full conversation.
My name’s Dave Barrett. I am a retired school teacher. I taught for 30 years, coached many sports, including track, cross country, and golf. I am 54 years old. Within the last year, I decided to have a knee replacement. I used the X10 for about four weeks.
For years I have been a devout a workout enthusiast. I used to be a runner, and when my knee went bad, I turned to cycling. I felt healthy when I could work out three to five days a week. As my knee problems progressed, I became unable to do that.
My knee pain was prohibiting me from doing the things that I really wanted to do.
I’ve seen tons of friends wait too long to do their knee replacement, and their recovery was difficult. I made the decision that I wasn’t going to wait until I was 60 or 70 when I was in excruciating pain. I had enough discomfort that, mentally and physically, I was ready for a full knee replacement. The doctors agreed that it was time, so I made the decision. I was really comfortable with that.
I’m a pretty active guy. I’m a fly fisherman. I like cycling. I play tennis, I ski and I wanted not to be in pain and be able to enjoy that with my family. It was really a lifestyle choice.
For Weeks Later – Post-Surgery
I had my surgery four weeks ago.
The surgeon did such a phenomenal job, but what was really different for me is when I learned about the X10 and what it provided. I’m kind of a systematic person. So I was looking forward to doing something regularly to try to rehab my knee in my home.
It wasn’t just an object, it wasn’t just a mechanical thing. It was a support system in addition to my physical therapist. It’s really remarkable, the system that’s set up around the therapy with this machine.
What it meant to me
Lisa from X10 called and said, “I’m from X10 and we’re going to bring this machine into your home and you’re going to do some prehab before your surgery. And then you’re going to do some rehab after. I really didn’t understand what that would look like or what that would feel like, but it made me feel so much better. I think it helped my mind. I absolutely, positively think that the work that I put in on the X10 helped my physical therapy. The recovery mentally and physically has been outstanding because of this machine and the system that this company has set up.
A Significant Surgery
Anyone that knows anything about knee replacement surgery knows that it’s a significant surgery. The mental and physical is so hand-in-hand. The day after surgery I was on the X10 machine three times for 40 minutes. I worked out three times a day for four weeks. It was a comfort that gave me something to shoot for it, actually. Some people say, “Well I don’t like working out.” I didn’t view it as working out. I viewed it as an escape, to be able to rehab the knee. And lots of times I felt better coming off the machine than when I did going on the machine.
What Exactly Is it?
And the machine itself: You can go online and see it. It’s a chair. It’s an articulating arm that moves the knee back and forth, attached to a computer. I’ve told people, “Oh I have this X10,” and I kind of described it to them. And they said, “Oh yeah, yeah, I had that at my home too.” What they’re thinking of is the CPM machine where you lay down in a bed and you have these articulating machines that move the knee joint. But where this was totally different is the X10 machine monitors pressures and it also calculates angles. And in addition to that, about every two days I would be in contact with my coach, who is a human being, who would actually say, “Okay, our goals this week are to get you to 90 degrees.”
Coaching Me to Success
My Quick Knee Surgery Recovery. And they really walk you through it. I felt like I had a personal trainer to see and feel my progress. I’m not trying to boast at all. I’m just trying to say that the day after surgery my knee went to 90 degrees and three days ago my knee went to 130 degrees by using the X10. I can’t say enough about how easy it is to use. And if there were days where I used it once instead of three times, I didn’t feel as good. I was in more pain. So, I just can’t speak highly enough of how that comforted me and also helped me heal.
A Little Bit About My Prehab
X10 versus just going to a gym? The question is really about the in-home component. If I didn’t have the X10 and I look back, a physical therapist would have visited the home and given me some exercises, which I maybe would have done a few days a week. And I would get some of my flexion back and things like that.
But because I had the machine in my home, I could select where I wanted it. I could put it in front of a television, I could put it in a secluded room. Being able to do that in the comfort of my own home was a total game-changer because it allowed me to work out but also see progress. The frustration that any patient feels after any kind of major surgery is, in a word, “setbacks.” When you’re able to do that in your home, where people around you can support you, just really made a difference comfort-wise and to see and record that information and to have a coach talk to you and encourage you. It was really powerful.
My Rehab Progress
In the first week, I went from my bedroom using a walker, walking into the room with the X10 getting up onto that machine. When I got off the machine, it felt better. Then I progressed to a cane and then to no assistive tools. With the X10, it may sound so silly, but it was definitely a comfort in knowing that you could go back the next day or the next afternoon and see visible progress. And it helped with pain too.