BKA – Day 1

1st May 2014 – Day 1…..

Didn’t sleep very well last night this was not due to too much pain, but I’m guessing it was a combination of the days events and medication.

The pain today is significantly better than yesterday, still on morphine using the PCA pump.

My Initial observations are of muscle position memory, an example of this is:

Sitting up in bed with an imaginary leg bent at the knee, I was unable to lay my hip flat on the bed, because until yesterday my heel would have hit the bed although it is no longer there. To lay the hip flat on the bed it forced me to straighten the knee, which in turn would have lifted the imaginary heel off the bed. To double check this I put my hand at the end of the stump and confirm there was nothing in the way, supporting my now gone leg.

That was my first experience of trying to touch what was no longer there. Weird feeling, both physically and emotionally.

By mid morning, I was able to get out of bed by transferring to my wheelchair. Both a nurse and the physiotherapist were on hand to assist if required. This enabled me to use the bathroom, have a shave and a wash.

Trying to bend my knee is very difficult, not painful, just difficult as my mind is fighting what the muscles have been doing for the last 40 years. Some serious re-education required. Movement is very jerky, not smooth like it used to be.

The lack of mass on the end of my leg is also something weird to get used to. Imagine lifting an empty bucket, expecting it to be full, and lifting it much higher and quicker than you anticipated because it was empty and much lighter than expected.

I feel so much better today than what I have done for months, even my wife’s first reaction when she saw my was ‘you look so much brighter than normal’

My 6 year old son saw the bandaged stump for the first time today, I asked him about it and he said it was cut higher than he thought. He thought it was just going to be my foot. Maybe it was misunderstood communication on both our parts.

I was concerned that when I first saw my leg missing, I didn’t know how I would react. Well, to be honest, I’m glad it’s gone. No regrets. I am now on the road to recovery and although it is a while away, there is now light at the end of the tunnel.

I have also stopped using the PCA morphine unit today, and have moved onto oral morphine equivalents. Still having IV paracetamol every six hours.

Been up and about today around the hospital in my wheelchair. Not bad for day one following a below knee amputation.

My dressing has slipped a little, looks like it will be redressed tomorrow, my first opportunity to see my stump. I’m already growing to dislike the word ‘stump’


>>> Day 2 >>>