Hi, my names Paul and I’m posting here not a question but some info because I strongly believe that sharing my sister’s story can help others – so if you’re reading it right now, please share it with others.
About 2 months ago my sister had a TKR(total knee replacement). It happened to be that I had the same surgery myself 2 years ago. It’s not an easy thing to go through, and I made sure to be as supportive of my sister as possible. The surgery went well, she was recovering, and then, all of a sudden, 2 days after the procedure she almost bled to death. There’re many things you take into consideration when going through knee replacement – will the surgery go well? Will I wake up from anesthesia? Will my new knee be rejected or not. I discussed these things with my physician in detail, and so did my sister. But apparently, there’s a risk of internal bleeding caused by anticoagulants that are injected after surgery, to prevent the blood clots formation. The risk is not exceptionally frequent, but my sister happened to be in the unlucky part of statistics. When she was in an emergency room, I realized that going through the similar procedure in a different hospital I wasn't even prescribed anticoagulants. I remembered being on baby aspirin and a portable compression device for about 10 days after the surgery. During my recovery period, I didn't think too much of it. But when my sister was bleeding to death, I kept thinking that if she was prescribed that device instead of anticoagulants, her life would probably not be at risk.
I did some research and found the name of the device. It’s called ActiveCare+SFT, it applies soft compression to your legs, and somehow prevents clots formation without a need of anticoagulants. Here’s their website. They also have a list of hospitals where this device is prescribed.
Read about it, and please spread the word! This is the best life saving tip anyone can give you if you’re going through joint replacement surgery.
The decision of choosing or not choosing anti-coagulation therapy is based on risk-stratification. In cases where the risk of clot formation is relatively lower post a surgery, anti-platelet medications/ compression stockings/ devices are advised and where the risk is considered high, specific anti-coagulant therapy is initiated. Random/ imprudent use of anti-coagulants has a high risk of bleeding post-surgery and is not generally advisable. It is indeed unfortunate to have a bleed or to be on the odd part of the statistics.
Hope the information is helpful.
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