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[THR] Anterior THR Recovery by KCDawg34

Discussion in 'Hip Replacement Recovery Area' started by KCDawg34, Jan 28, 2017.

  1. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    So, I had a THR on my right hip on January 4th of this year. So, as of today, that's 24 days or just over three weeks. I thought I'd give some background on my case and update as I continue through the recovery. Maybe something that I go through will help others or it may just give some insight on one single recovery.
    - I'm 51 years old and in pretty decent shape, albeit a good 30 pounds overweight.
    - About two years ago I ran 3 miles a day about 5 days a week. Started getting some knee pain and scheduled an appointment with orthopedic doctor (whom my wife, an OT, picked out). Amazingly, the doctor says that I have no problem with my knee, but as he examined me, thought I might have some with hips. Did more x-rays and yep, bone-on-bone in both hips due to severe osteo arthritis. He recommended THR for both.
    - I opted to deal with the pain and made it another 18 months before I scheduled another appt. The pain seemed to get maybe just a little bit worse overtime, but then reached a tipping point where it hurt all the time and kept me from doing anything. Gained some weight as I couldn't do any exercise.
    - Had the Right side replaced via the anterior approach at 630pm on January 4th (exactly two years after initial diagnosis). Got to my room at 1030 pm the first night and checked out on the 6th at noon. No problems on the ride home, car transfer, or making it up steps.
    - Week one at home was kind of a haze. Had three in-home PT visits that went great. The PT showed me the best way to get in and out of bed, a few basic exercises and watched my walk around the house on my walker. She actually discharged me on my fourth visit (1/17).
    - Week two I really tapered down the hard drugs and relied more on Tylenol. Tried to walk around the designated path in my house every 45 minutes or so. Everything was going great until once when getting out of bed and got intense, searing pain in my left (non-surgical) thigh. I had pain there before, but nothing like this. It hasn't stopped the pins and needles feeling since that day and at least once a day it feels like someone is stabbing me repeatadly in the thigh.
    - I stopped taking any of the narcotics during the day as of January 17th, though I have taken an oxycodone to help sleep through the night a couple of times since then. I had my follow up appt with my surgeon on January 20th. He took the stitches out and released me to go back to work. I have a desk job so it wasn't a huge deal. I actually drove home from the appointment and have been driving myself to work since then.
    - The first week of work was a mixed bag. Made it all day on Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday was rough as the thigh pain on my left side, and some similar pain on my right side (specifically around the scar), really kicked in. The worst part was my knee pain (the reason I initially discovered the hip problems) kicked in to overdrive. Big time pain walking to the point I left at noon and went home. Iced the knee and the scar. Had a bunch of conference calls on Thursday so I just worked from home. I made it all day on Friday with minimal discomfort, but the knee is still somewhat painful.

    So, if any one actually made it through the above, I think I am doing ok though I am still dealing with a few issues. I actually have very minimal pain in the replacement hip. All my problem spots are those areas compensating for It. I'm scheduled to do the left hip on March 2, so I want to be ready for that when it gets here. The nerve pain in the left thigh really freaks me out, however, as I DO NOT want to have to deal with that feeling from here on out. I am also hopeful that my knee pain subsides. If any one has any exerecises to strengthen the knee, I would be interested in hearing them.

    Let me know if you have any questions, or just feel free to comment. Best of luck to all those going through this recovery.
     
  2. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    Well, it happened again. Went to bed at about 1130 pm. As I lay in bed, I could literally feel the tops and sides of my thighs get hot under the covers (though not hot to the touch) and prickly (pins and needles). The bed was fairly flat, but I did have my legs slightly elevated (platform bed that is great).

    I apparently moved under the covers around 2 am and intense, searing pain in top of right thigh. It felt like I imagine an ice pick would feel were it plunged into my leg. I yelled out in pain, woke my wife, and then moved my leg with yet another searing pain. I got up out of the bed and walked into the family room using my cane. It was no problem to walk, and leg actually felt ok as I meandered along. I made it to the recliner and I am sitting there now, typing this and wondering what the heck is going on.

    Any thoughts on what this might be? It certainly doesn't seem normal. Please share your thoughts and any ideas you might have.

    Thank you, KCDawg34
     
  3. Jaycey

    Jaycey Moderator

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    @KCDawg34 Congratulations on that new hip. From what you describe I would say that at only 24 days out you are doing too much and are under medicated. Post op pain takes on many forms including "nerve" spasms. Are you icing and elevating? Tylenol may not be enough this early out.

    For now I would not do any exercising for that knee. If that hip is bone on bone the pain could be referred from your hip. Exercising will only make it worse.

    I'll leave you with a bit of reading. These articles will give you the basics on this recovery. The approach really doesn't matter at this point - the result is the same.
    First are the BoneSmart mantras ....
    - rest, elevate, ice and take your pain meds by the clock
    - if it hurts, don't do it and don't allow anyone - especially a physiotherapist - to do it to you
    - if your leg swells more or gets stiffer in the 24 hours after doing it, don't do it again
    - if you won't die if it's not done, don't do it
    - never stand when you can sit, never sit when you can lie down, never stay awake when you can go to sleep!
    - be active as much as you need to be but not more than is necessary, meaning so much that you end up being in pain, exhausted or desperate to sit down or lay down!

    Pain management and the pain chart
    Healing: how long does it take?
    Chart representation of THR recovery
    Dislocation risk and 90 degree rule
    Energy drain for THRs
    Pain and swelling control: elevation is the key
    Activity progression for THRs
    Home physio (PT)
    Post op blues is a reality - be prepared for it
    Myth busting: on getting addicted to pain meds
    Sleep deprivation is pretty much inevitable - but what causes it?
     
  4. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    Thanks for replying Jaycee. It is quite possible that I am doing a bit much. Not so much work, which is basically sitting at a desk typing/talking/calling, but around the house. My wife's 78 year old mom fell five days prior to my surgery and shattered her left hip and left elbow. It was so bad that she is non-weight bearing for six weeks after her surgery and will be at 50% weight bearing for another month after that. Since her injuries were so bad, we had to cancel her apartment and get everything into a storage facility. While I certainly didn't do much of that (we hired movers), I did make some trips up and down carrying stuff back and forth to the car and then into the unit. I'm going to try and slow down, but my poor wife can only handle so much more. She's got to be teetering on the edge of exhaustion.

    I did take some oxycodone today and yes, it really helped. I'm going to utilize it a bit more for at least the next couple of weeks to at least take the edge off. For the most part, I don't have any problem dealing with the pain during the day. My only issue has been the night time thigh pains that literally come out of no where (or so it seems).

    As for the knee pain, it is actually on my surgergically repaired leg. When I say excercise, I really mean something similar to the in bed exercises (ankle flexes, etc.) I did with the hip. I'm not going anywhere near a gym anytime soon .

    Any other thoughts you or any one else has are appreciated.
     
  5. chuckster

    chuckster Junior Member

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    KC Dawg34

    I hear you all the way. I have a very similar situation even tho I'm further along. Got diagnosed with end stage OA last summer after 2 years suffering. Had LTHR on Dec 15 do I'm just over 6 weeks out. Discussed doing right hip in the fall with the OS. Recovery on left side has gone swimmingly. Little or no pain meds after week 1.

    Then recently started getting just what you describe in non operated side. Searing stabbing tightness and pain can't get comfortable chair or bed for a while clunky out any weight in it last night and was up in agony from 3am-7am I was scared wow. Took some oxy and muscle relaxers finally got a comfy position in bed and slept some. A bit better today /now but I wonder ??!?!

    Is it the bone on bone OA in other hip ? Is it I've used that hip exclusively last 6 weeks including uncomfortable back sleeping ?! Is it mental as I'm feeling the pain more cause left hip so good now ? The overall trauma from major surgery and my body adjusting. Any or all of the above ?


    My symptoms and pain seem so close to what you are experiencing. How did you schedule hip #2 only 8 weeks later ? Work ?! I'm rambling now but trust me I DO know how you feel. I want to be all better the last couple years have been tough. I'm a part time tennis coach and player this is brutal for me!

    Hang in there I pray it gets better sooner rather than later.

    Chuckster


    Sent from my iPhone using BoneSmart mobile app
     
  6. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    Chuckster,

    I'm sorry to hear that you are going through this now as well. As you noted, what you are dealing with sounds very similar to my problems. Here's a little more info. on my situation.
    - I originally went in for knee pain, but after the x-ray the Doctor said he couldn't see anything wrong. He started a physical exam -moving me this way and that- and based on that he sent me for X-rays on both hips. Both came back as bone on babe from advance OA. He suggested surgery on both right then, but I wasn't quite ready for it at that point.
    -Fast forward and I waited too long. Trouble getting out of the car, tying my shoes, no exercise, etc. By the time I got my appointment, it was October of 2016. I opted to wait a bit longer so I could do both in the same year for insurance purposes. My surgeon doesn't like doing both at the same time, rather his protocol is 6 weeks between them. I needed a little more time and asked for 8. So, we scheduled the right one for January 4 and the left is set for 730 am on March 2. (On a side note, my wife is an OT and is very familiar with all the KC hip surgeons. She was adamant that I use this doctor.)
    - Like you, my first week or so was easy, other than some nausea from the anesthesia the first night/morning. Then I turned in my left hip getting out of bed and, for one if the first times in a long time, screamed out loud. The tingly/hot/tight feeling hasn't stopped in that leg since then. It hasn't really bothered me too much when I walk, but i always know it's there.
    - This week I have had some of the same issues with my thigh on the right, surgically repaired side. It isn't as expansive and is generally around my surgical scar. If I ice it for a good while it tends to improve, whereas the left hip not so much.
    - I'm going to try and take it easier this next week and am going to use the oxycodone as needed. I've been told I have a really high pain tolerance, but if I can avoid the pain, I would much rather do that, lol.
    - I'm still very nervous about the next surgery and how my screwed up thigh reacts, but I'm going to remain positive, do what the doctor says, and hope for the best.

    Take care and I will keep following your recovery thread.

    KCDawg34
     
  7. Jaycey

    Jaycey Moderator

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    That would do it! New hips do not like lifting or carrying - plus all the extra steps. Please take things easy. You don't want to develop a chronic pain condition.
     
  8. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    3 am right now on start of day 27. Just woke up screaming from the longest, protracted muscle spasm in my left (non-surgical) thigh I have ever felt. A burning, stabbing pain that was 12 of 10 on the pain scale.My right leg, where I did have surgery, feels great. I still had some knee pain there a bit yesterday, but the surgical hip feels awesome.

    Really don't know what to do. I took it easy yesterday. While I did work, I iced off and on all day. I even got people to carry all my stuff from the car into my office. The few meetings I had, I got moved to my office. Overall I really just didn't do too much.

    I'm going to call the surgeon tomorrow (today?) to see what he thinks. This scares me, especially the thought of getting it cut on in just over 4 weeks.
     
  9. Jaycey

    Jaycey Moderator

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    Sounds like you may be dealing with pre-op bone on bone pain on the non-op side. Unfortunately there are no pain meds that deal with pre-op pain. Some will take the edge off but there is still that nagging tooth ache type pain. You are doing the right thing getting that second hip done soon.
     
  10. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    With the help of Percocet, I've actually been able to sleep through most of the last couple of nights. A week ago was pretty close to walking with no assistance, and really no limp. Now I'm back on the walker almost full time. My right, surgically repaired hip still feels great, but the left leg has either thigh or hip pain the majority of the time. I went back on the walker once my right knee pain got intolerable. I guess I started compensating there to cover for my left leg, lol. Man, it's just one thing after another.

    I'm just trying not to do too much and to make it through the next month. Everyone at work is going out if their way to help me, so I basically don't need to leave my office except for the occasional restroom break. And I started going in a bit late and leaving a bit early when I can. I have everything I need to work out of my house on occasion, so I have been doing that as needed.

    I'm just trying to stay positive and I keep telling myself this will all be worth it once it's done. Fingers crossed.
     
  11. chuckster

    chuckster Junior Member

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    Hang in there KC you got this !! I know the frustration thought I was getting there now this other hip !!! Damn my new hip feels great and I have swelling pain and tightness in other one just like you. It's weird people ask me how the hip is coming I say great it's the other one bothering me they look at me like I'm crazy. Soooooooooo frustrating. I gotta keep thinking after hip 2 is done I'll be a new man. Looks like late April cannot wait !


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  12. baclectic

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    @KCDawg34 For weeks after my Hip Replacement every night I'd sleep for an hour or two to be awakened by my thigh and groin muscles spasming. It was excruciating. I'd get out of bed and walk around with my walker. It eased up a bit then I'd go to bed only to be awakened again with that agonizing pain.
    The good news is it doesn't happen now. It does go away. Be patient, you're not alone in this. I never expected this Recovery to be this extensive and painful. The pain will go away and you will recover. Just be patient and try not to do so much. Good luck.
    Barbara


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  13. Jaycey

    Jaycey Moderator

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    You are going to feel so much better once you get that second hip done! It's too bad you can't enjoy the full benefit of your RTHR with that left one kicking off. Just stay off the sore hip as much as possible. Do you have a surgery date yet?
     
  14. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    Thanks, Barbara. I didn't really know anything about the spasms, so I was not prepared when they happened, especially to both hips at the same time. And you're right, getting up and walking around is about the only thing that helps them. But your reassurance that they do go away is very helpful. Thank you.

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  15. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    I'm scheduled to have the left one done on March 2. My surgeon scheduled them both at the same time last year, as he is something like 3-4 month out on everything he does. His usual protocol is 6 weeks between hips, but I opted for 8 as I thought I needed a couple of extra weeks in there to get some work done. I'm wishing I had listened to him now, lol. Thank you.
     
  16. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    Just thought I would give another update as I am officially at the ene of week 5. I'll bullet point it again for brevity.

    - I pretty much go back and forth between good days and bad days. I still get occasional swelling on my new hip side, but nothing too much out of the ordinary or different from what I expected. Overall, I would have to say the right side has been very successful.
    - My main problems continue to by on my left, non-operative (is that a word?) hip. I still get the constant muscle spasms and then the occasional intense, burning pain in my left thigh. I do have a bit of this on the right thigh, but nothing that is even close to what's going on in the left.
    - My right knee is doing a good bit better as well. I only use the walker now to go back and forth to the parking lot at work ( which is a haul) and am back on the cane other than that.
    - I take one Percocet in the morning after I get to work and then one before I go to bed at night. The first makes it a bit easier to sit for longer periods of time and the second helps me sleep through the night at least part of the time.
    - I am basically three weeks out from hip replacement number 2. It's set up for March 2 at 7:30 am. I'm a bit nervous as I'm afraid my left thigh will not recover and I will have to endure the burning sensation for the rest of my life. Hipfully (that's the new word I invented to describe being hopeful about your hips), that won't be the case.

    That's pretty much where I am at in a nutshell. Hipfully the right side gets a bit stronger in the next three weeks so it can compensate for the left a bit better than the way it worked out previously.

    Thanks and I hope everyone has a great rest of the week and weekend.
     
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  17. chuckster

    chuckster Junior Member

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    Any update KC ?! ....March 2 getting closer !! I'm scheduled for April 27 for hip #2 can't wait !! Every day surgical side gets better and my non-operative side seems same or worse. It's soooooooo frustrating just gotta picture summer time walking and enjoying 2 new hips!

    Let me know how you are doing when u get a chance .

    Chuckster


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  18. KCDawg34

    KCDawg34 Junior Member
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    Glad your operated hip is recovering well! I'm sitting here with heat on my right thigh as we speak. Again, right, replaced hip doing pretty well other than the occasional stabby/burning pain in thigh whereas the left, non-operative one isn't doing too well at all.

    Had my pre-surgical check up yesterday and that went fine. Next surgery is scheduled for March 2 at 9:30 AM CST. Im just hoping that does the trick.
     
  19. opie

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    You both are rock stars! I'm a double hippie as of January 30. My surgeries were 8 years apart so I have nothing to offer other than praise and hope that we will be so cool when this is all over and we are rocking everything we do without pain. Keep posting! You will be great!


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  20. Jaycey

    Jaycey Moderator

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    Just a bit of house keeping advice - you don't need to quote a post in order to reply. Just start typing in the box below the last post. Quotes are fine if you what to highlight just a bit of text and reply directly to it. But you don't need to quote the entire post each time you reply. Thanks!
     

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