Bilateral THR Both Sides NOW!


Staff member since December 30, 2020
BoneSmart Staff
Sep 5, 2011
United States United States
djklaugh has made it to the other side!!!

I'm doing OK - finally home after 5 days in hospital. Got very excellent care - great pain management - and every one was impressed with the bilateral in 214 ;) I'm still moving very slowly .... but I am moving. Part of the problem in going home was I have to go up 7 steps to get into my house - so eventually it was decided that I would go home by care car with assist up the stairs ... that worked well. According to the surgeon the procedures were perfect and it was even more evident that bilateral was the way to go - apparently both hips were fused which is why I could not stand up straight. I'll post more as soon as I can sit up at my desktop :)
djklaugh (aka Deb)
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Re: djklaugh has made it to the other side!!!

Deb, my warmest congratulations and wishes for a smooth first few days home. Looking forward to when you can post your whole story.
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Re: djklaugh has made it to the other side!!!

Fabulous news! Thank you for sharing and looking forward to hearing from soon, that's beyond amazing having both hips done!!
So here's the story -

12/7 - did the pre-op wash with help from my cousin- much giggling about the stickiness. At hospital by 10:15 and all checked in. Helped into gown, got IV started, answered all the multiple questions again. About 12noon was taken down to the orthopedic surgical suite - interesting collection of orthopedic "masks" and other large equipment posted in niche out side of the suite - looked rather like fencing head gear. Told anesthesiologist to be careful positioning right arm as I have arthritis and/or bursitis there - he kindly agreed to position it carefully (result= very positive - no additional problems after surgery). A bit of banter (finally made the anesthesiologist smile) :th_heehee: (this is one of my personal life goals - leave smiles behind) and off I went to lala land ;)
Woke up about 5 hours later just getting moved into my room and my cousin arrived a few minutes later. First question from staff - "how would you rate your pain" .... ummmm I don't feel much of anything right at the moment". The leg wedge was in place and kept legs from moving for the first 24 hours. Thank goodness for catheter! There were times after it was taken out that I wanted it back! They had a large white board next to my bed where each shift RN and CNA was listed plus daily goals, any particular concerns, date, and my preferred "call name" :) That was a big help as my roommate had different staff assigned to her but they were willing to do for me too when they were in the room. My cousin said the doctor told her that both my hips were fused which is why I could not stand upright prior to surgery and that the degeneration was really bad - proving once again that the bilateral procedure was really the way to go!

12/8 Sleep was in bits and spurts - cuz staff kept coming in to make sure all was well with me - understandable but annoying - pain management was excellent! My doctor had said it would be "what ever works for you" and he was right - morphine to start with sustained release. Then morphine with short acting release. Tried something else (don't recall the name but it was less strong than the morphine) but that didn't work too good.
Staff was worried as my BP was quite low and I was feeling dizzy and light headed though I did get up when PT came and got on my feet to go to commode. Had breakfast and lunch - they have a menu cafeteria - you just phone for room service, order what you want when you want it, and it is brought up to you within 20 minutes - and pretty good food too! Not as good as home cooking - but good none the less :) There was a steady stream of RNs, CNAs, PTs, OTs, hospitalist (medical doctor who checks on hospitalized patients) - all of whom are fascinated with the elderly bilateral in 214.

12/9 Still concerned about low BP so I'm on for blood transfusion. 2 units - that gets started so PT and OT for the day is on hold until that runs through. Mostly snoozing and napping during the day plus leg exercises and breathing exercises. Some discussion with PT about when to go home they think maybe Saturday or Sunday. But when I said I have 7 stairs to climb to get into my house - "what? I didn't know that. That's not down here at all" ..... "Well I've told nearly everyone I've talked to in the past 6 months that that is my situation - don't know why it's not been recorded any where!" :DOH:Well then they put off discharge until Sunday. Once transfusion is finished then back to work ambulating. Still feeling tired, groggy, airheaded (or more so than is normal for me :hysterical: )

12/10 - feeling better - transfusion helped and BP is now back to normal! But let me tell you post op with bilateral THR is not easy! Thankfully there is NO bone on bone pain!! and post surgical pain was not too bad ..... but all the hip precautions apply to BOTH hips at the same time - so you never have one unoperated on hip to take up slack or bend and stretch any which way you want. Amazing how may folks had not heard the news and were startled by me saying "nope - don't have an un operated on hip"! And the muscle weakness and stiffness also is bilateral. It's quite amazing how much thinking you have to do about simple things like getting up from a chair - where to place hands to make sure you don't violate the 90 degree rule (or rather 70 degree rule in my case - not sure why but that's my doctor's orders). I keep reminding my self to not compare to my BS friends who are striding along after one hip replacement .... just compare me to me yesterday ;)

12/11 Feeling stronger - more ambulating out in hall way, to bathroom rather than bed side commode, ice packs frequently changed. Cousin brought laptop over but it and the hospital wifi did not get along - I'm not computer savvy enough to be able to figure out what the problem is.... guess going online will have to wait until I get home. PT and OT in to discuss discharge - now they want me to stay to Monday - me - no please I want to go home. So they agree but insist on sending me home by care car with 2 fellows to help get me up the stairs and into the house. My cousin (man I am so lucky to have her here!!!) has created a main floor bedroom for me - turned the front room from sitting room/TV room into bedroom. And rented a hospital bed and had it delivered and set up. Plus she and my housemate moved the big sofa and rearranged some other bits and pieces so there are easily reachable tables next to bed and reclining chair.

12/12 - So bed is being delivered today, cousin will call when that is done and then transport will be notified to come get me. Had a bed bath so got a bit clean and put on clothes for the trip home. Then .... hurry up and wait .... 4pm Transport arrives .... but no one told driver that there are 7 steps into the house and he needs another fellow to help. So he has to notify his department to have someone meet up at my house :hairpulling: This was without a doubt the low point of the entire experience. The "care car"/van was dirty, smelled of gasoline and rather cold. The driver was nice but the failure of communication was annoying. But mission was accomplished :) and I got delivered home and hoisted up the front stairs and settled into my nice comfy hospital bed.

12/13 - whew! Got to sleep for 4-5 hours at a stretch - only waking up because of my needs not because someone else's schedule said "time to check patient;s vitals" or "time to check patient's BP". Lovely all over sponge bath plus shampoo!!!! Clean clothes, lovely breakfast, leg exercises, icing and elevation with brief nap, and now a bit of computer time - amazing how much junky/spam/drek there is in the old inbox after 5 days away.
Now time for position change and nap again :) Thanks BS friends for all your support! And for all the excellent information and advise - made everything much more understandable and easy to keep track of what was going on.
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Great report Deb! I am glad to hear you are feeling ok. The first decent night sleep and sponge bath is great, isn't it? Keep the updates coming!
Hello Deb......AKA the elderly bilateral in 214!!!

Love reading your posting and YES having both hips done must be a completely different journey WOW!! The only saying can relate I did break both my femurs back in 1991 and I remember always saying its hard not having a good leg to either fall back on or compare to in recovery, unusual experience.

Love that you sound really well, with little pain, plus LOVE your cousin that's to make a huge difference in help and support....nice!!

I couldn't imagine today having both hips done together.....your there though and here's to a safe, healthy recovery for you!!

Sending lots of good thoughts and wishes!!


Welcome home, Deb! Glad to hear from you and that you're settling in.
Congratulations Deb! What a wonderful update! Woman you are amazing! I don't know what else to say except you seem to making a fantastic comeback and I hope it continues for you. Keep up the great work and post when you can. Glad it is behind you now. Rest up and thanks for the good news!:cat-kittyandsmiley:
You are very brave! I'm so glad you had them done because your hips sound like they were terribly deteriorated.

Take care. Hope your discharge to home goes well.

Re: djklaugh has made it to the other side!!!

Thanks for the update Andy!
Welcome home, Deb. Take things easy rush in recovery. You sound like you are doing just fine so far!
6th Post Op day - Had a visit from PT yesterday afternoon - I get about 2 months worth of inhome PT provided by my insurance and that can be extended if there is a specific need. PT gal seems nice and not too pushy or aggressive though her visit was not well timed - she arrived about 6pm (having said she'd be here around 4:30-5pm) and stayed until 8:30. By the end of the visit I was on the edge of cranky or tears having sat upright too long and being hungry too with drool worth aroma of my cousin's pork roast cooking ;) PT was very thorough! Went through the house with a fine tooth comb looking at safety issues, hip precaution issues, etc. She combined PT and OT. Went through a long federally required form of questions to "enroll me" in home health care. Most every thing was OK though there are some bathroom issues. I'm only 5'2" and with the toilet extension I'm having a really hard time finding a comfortable place to sit - the extension means I have feet dangling which is uncomfortable but with out the extension I get too close to breaking hip precautions. All that is having negative impact on bodily functions :(
But she said I have the getting into and out of bed processes down perfectly! "You could be a model for how to do these the right way" Given that I've had to use them for past 6 months or so just because it hurt so much to do in and out of bed any other way ..... But nice to be told I'm doing something right :)

One thing I forgot to mention above about hospital stay - I did not have TEDS stockings but did have compression wraps on each leg that squeezed legs rhythmically - however after about day 3 the right side when it squeezed would force turn my foot inward which was a big no-no! the nurses tried a couple of times to reposition the wraps but could not get them set up so this did not happen so they were removed. Something to be aware of for anyone coming up on hip replacement - I had to bring this to the attention of the nurses - they did not notice that the squeezing was causing a problem. I did have belly jabs while in the hospital but was sent home just on aspirin twice a day.

Thanks for all your support Bone Smart friends! Now off for a lie down with elevation and ice :)
Deb, I think you need to set this PT place straight! That would NOT have been an acceptable time to come for a PT session in my book. Four-five would have been pushing it! You just had two major surgeries for crying out loud :no2:.

In any event, I hope you are able to set apppontments for a reasonable time, like morning or early afternoon when you will have more energy. They should certainly understand this. I would have to call and complain about it...:elfrevenge:
Glad you are home and doing well Deb! Ease does it now!
Yes Janet future PT visits will be at 9am :) This first visit was complicated by a number of factors - a: her usual area is quite a bit southeast of me; b: she's filling in for the usual PT for my area who is on vacation; c: hospital PT insisted that my first visit be on my first day home and NOT postponed to the next day; d: some local traffic issues which delayed her arrival at my place. She was very apologetic about the delay.
Oh good! She sounded very thorough, it just was not a very nice thing to do to a patient just getting home from the hospital!

Glad it has been resolved:cat-kittyandsmiley:!
Glad to hear you are home and on the road to mending. You sound really positive despite restrictions and whatever discomfort you are having -- that attitude will take you a long way. Good luck with the PT!
One week post op - milestone :egypt-dance:- woke at about 4am to go to bathroom and got self out of bed, toileted, and back into bed (plus positioned ice packs, between leg pillow, blankets, and foot of bed elevation) with out waking my cousin who was sleeping on the living room couch about 10 feet from my bed :) :sleepz: As she is going to have to return to her family soon it is good to know I can manage self care without assistance.
Though this morning I was very glad for her help with an all over sponge bath and shampoo! Plus another delicious breakfast.
Leg exercises going well though heel to butt slides and the slide legs out sideways are still stiff and harder to do. Walking around the house is smooth and cousin and housemate express amazement at how easy I make it look. Still using walker as instructed but feel like I really don't need it very much.
Bodily functions seem to be back to normal :yes 4: and pain is minimal - today I am trying just Ibuprofen during the day with the time release morphine at night. Yes I am being cautious and staying ahead of pain.
Cousin and I've been talking about PT's apparent impression of me as a close to dottering old lady and her reluctance to work with me on negotiation stairs - We will have to disabuse her of that notion! I really want to get the stairs part figured out and "signed off on" ASAP - good weather is not going to last much longer around here and I want to get in as much out-in-the-air exercise as I can. :snows: So stairs and shower protocols are MY PT agenda for Friday - my discharge instructions say bandages can come off 10 days after surgery and if there is not drainage then shower is OK. Can do sit down bath after 3 weeks if incisions has healed well.

Well off for a lie down with session of exercises and elevation and icing .... and probably snooze too ;)
Hello djklaugh, I've just registered on the forum, am so glad to find it, had bilaterlal replacement on 29 Nov so that's at least 2 of us now!It would be interesting to know how you're getting on , one of my problems is that bilateral is not common here in the UK and even the health professionals -my gp, my NHS physiotherapist-don't seem to be very sure how my recovery schedule should compare to the usual one hip being done at a time.So far I'm managing to get about the house on crutches including going up and down stairs 2 or 3 times a day, standing in the shower to shampoo my hair, standing on my crutches to make (microwave mainly!) meals, all very slowly but its gradually getting easier.I still can't really imagine yet being able to walk without the crutches though but the physio seemed to think on Monday that I'm doing ok so I 've decided to take each day as it comes.My big concern is trying to make sure I don't do anything that I shouldn't, like going beyond the 90 degrees, crossing my legs when I'm sleeping , that sort of thing. Hope you are continuing to improve
Major milestone Deb! There is something very comforting about know you can do it all on your own isn't there? Well done! You are on your way!

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