After Multiple Surgeries and Multiple Forms of Rehab, The X10
by Linda Washburn
Additional contribution by Tricia Lahmann (X10 Recovery Coach)
Videographer: David Lahmann
Video Editor: PJ Ewing
Foot-Fall, or… Rehabbing the Transverse Patella Fracture (in 30 days or less)
by Linda Washburn
I found that a transverse fractured patella can be somewhat of a challenge when it comes to rehab. The story goes something like this.
Right-foot reconstruction left me in a non-weight bearing cast for six weeks. I live alone with four companion animals.
Switching back and forth between a knee scooter, Rollator, and walker in order to get in and out of my bed and bathrooms, as well as to let my two dogs outside and back in, was so hard that first week of recovery, especially while on painkillers and lugging my heavy foot cast.
So I tried out new crutches shipped overnight by my well-meaning friend. Don’t like crutches. But anything had to help, and maybe they’re improved, I figured. She’d figured getting around my small house with those medical devices was tough, and she was right. The contraptions were wearing me out and stressing my very sore foot. One week post-op, while taking my first crutch-walk across my hard-surface floor, one flew to the left and the other to the right. I squirmed madly on my left leg to protect my right foot, eventually landing on my back. Result? Transverse patellar fracture caused by “muscle violence.” (physio-pedia.com, boneandspine.com).
Discharged to rehab from knee surgery in a blue immobilizer brace, my weight-bearing-as-tolerated leg had to do all the work of getting me around; my casted, non-weight bearing foot on the other side was useless. The strain pulled apart the wired and screwed together kneecap. I was discharged from revision surgery in a long-leg cast, my knee locked in place at about 0 degrees extension, weight-bearing as tolerated, for a month.
Two months later, I was discharged from rehab to home (alone) with my ROM knee brace set at 70 degrees flexion. Ten days later, the surgeon dismissed the brace, eyeballed my flexion at around 74 degrees, and complimented my cane skill. By my second week with Home PT, I was stronger but miserable, in pain, and becoming non-compliant with my at-home exercises. Learning about MUA, I was in tears Googling “my broken kneecap is killing me.” X10Therapy.com came up somewhere in the first page.
I couldn’t believe what I was reading! All these people’s miracle stories! The next day was my phone conversation with PJ Ewing, and a few weeks later, Dave Lahmann delivered and calibrated the X10 to me. That first session with Dave’s instruction got my knee to 80 degrees flexion; boy did that hurt. A week later I made it to 112, and a week after that to 122. When Dave returned, I’d made it to X10’s maximum flexion point: 130 degrees, and boy did that hurt! But it was a miracle to experience 122 degrees as too easy and painless. The best part? Dave and my coach, Tricia, gave me all the confidence I needed to understand that strange machine, relax and embrace X10, and use it to my best personal advantage.
Two weeks post-X10 now, flexion is measured at 135; gains are slower but steady with a physical therapist.
My goal is 145 to match my other knee. Wires threaded through my quadriceps and patellar tendons to help hold my kneecap together will be removed in two months, six months post-op. My remaining pain, inflammation, and 10 degrees shy should be gone afterwards. But there will be a setback and additional PT will ensue. I’m confident I won’t need X10 again; I’ll have been prehabbed!
Oh, and my foot is fine, titanium screw and all.
Click on the play button below to watch a video account of my recovery.
Lessons from Ms. Linda, for “All y’all”
by Tricia Lahmann (X10 Knee Recovery Coach)
What a trooper we found in Linda Wasburn, our dedicated hard-working patient from the heartland! She immediately earned her nickname, “Wonder Woman,” as I was amazed by her daily progress in range of motion, as well as her rapid increase in strength. As her X10 Recovery Coach, excitedly I’d anticipate her funny and frequent texts detailing her journey.
As “serious” as injuries and surgeries are, Linda was such a great example of someone who could make the BEST of every situation, even having “fun” with rehabilitating her fractured knee.
It really did come down to the one thing that I think makes or breaks ANY outcome in life — mindset. Mindset includes so many factors, and here are just a few. I hope you find them to be beneficial for your situation or stage in life.
Whether having healthy knees or facing replacement…
Believe– in yourself, in your ability to heal, in the abilities and intentions of good people who support and encourage your healing process. Open your heart and mind to believe for the BEST for yourself, and speak those positive words out into the world. You can help create what you speak. Linda knew from the start we believed in her, and very soon as she forged ahead she found the strength and courage to really believe in herself too, and her ability to keep improving each day.
Focus – when you really want something, you do whatever it takes. You zero in on that item as if there’s nothing else in the room, in the world… if you desire the best recovery, to walk and function again, you treat it like a full-time job (luckily, it’s a temp position!). You’ll get what you focus on. Linda has many responsibilities and a busy life, like anyone else. But she knew that to have a successful recovery, she had to put the time, energy, and work into it to achieve what she wanted. She kept her focus and did an excellent job! Above and beyond.
Discipline– much like focus, it’s giving top priority to what’s important, making time for it, investing into it, giving your recovery the time and attention it needs, being fully engaged and involved with it. There were days when she was tired, there were some days of a “little” more soreness than other days, and through it all, Linda decided to stay with it, work the program, add minutes to her sessions, maybe even do an extra session. Point being, of course, getting past what you “want” to do, and doing what you know you NEED to do, to get what you wanted in the first place. No regrets.
Attitude– willingness to try something new, to be adventurous, to think outside the box. Linda found what she needed in the X10 System, and went after it. She was positive, grateful, kind, patient, and open to learning all she could to have the best possible results. She stayed excited throughout her journey, and she encouraged & inspired others along the way as she shared on social media.
Fun– have a playful side that sees opportunities to enjoy every circumstance in life, taking on challenges by laughing in the midst of it all. Life is such a blessing, enjoy it.. all of it! Know that if you feel like you got knocked down (literally or figuratively), you can get back up, have the right mindset, work at it, and get your strength back, maybe even better than before. Be of good cheer, laughter is like good medicine (with no bad side effects)! Linda has a great “giggly girl” personality, it was so fun being her coach!
The X10 Meta-Blog
We call it a “Meta-Blog” because we step back and give you a broad perspective on all aspects of knee health, surgery and recovery.
In this one-of-a-kind blog we gather together great thinkers, doers, writers related to Knee Surgery, Recovery, Preparation, Care, Success and Failure. Meet physical therapists, coaches, surgeons, patients, and as many smart people as we can gather to create useful articles for you. Whether you have a surgery upcoming, in the rear-view mirror, or just want to take care of your knees to avoid surgery, you should find some value here.