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THR Bumblebee's recovery thread..

bumblebee2

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Hi all, hope everyone is okay and fairly painfree x

I had my right hip replacement on the 26th, so today is 6 days later and i'm starting to see improvement on a daily basis.

I lost much of the 26th and 27th sleeping on and off in a low blood pressure and morphine haze.. i'm guessing i lost a fair bit of blood in theatre as my blood pressure was awful until it finally started staying stable on Friday morning.

I was released from hospital on saturday (should have been Friday but i failed the stairs test due to my muscle refusing to lift my foot up - i'm assuming the surgeon cut through it , it's still super weak but it is starting to pick up a little more each day).

I'm not sure where i should be in terms of recovery at this point, but i'm still super tired a lot of the time, and i'm finding something as simple as going upstairs exhausting. I am however noticing that i can stand for longer periods each day. On Saturday i had a shower before being released from the hopsital, and was totally exhausted by the time i'd finished. it felt lovely to be nice and clean, but wow, i can't even explain how much getting dressed took out of me. The nurse had asked me to leave the door unlocked in case i needed help, and i'm glad i listened, I got stuck trying to get my trousers on (couldn't drag them past my foot that i couldn't lift due to the not working muscle) and the nurse had to come in to help.

One very awesome (and weird) point right now, is that paracetamol!! = it works.!! It never works, I stopped bothering with it years ago, even Naproxen wasn't taking any of the hip pain away before, and now i can take a couple of paracetamol or a Naproxen, and half an hour later sit there marvelling at how my pain has subsided to a nice level 5 or 6 out of 10.

My scar is bigger than i thought it would be, so i'm a bit disappointed by that, but it's also not cut into my bottom as much as i thought it would, so that's kind of made up for the size of it a little. I'm uncertain exactly what my surgeon closed my wound with, but i have no staples or stitches as far as the nurse could make out when she changed my dressing before leaving hospital on Sat. Surgical glue and clever use of dressings perhaps? - whatever the case, from what i could see of it (i didn't want to look too much, but was pleasantly surprised by the bit i could see), it looks nice and neat and it's healing nicely.

Ugh - mini whine coming up though.. = food and drink!! - i didn't factor in for how i was going to get a cup of tea or a meal from the kitchen, to my living room. I live on my own, so have to do most things myself. For tea and coffee i've ended up using a plastic travel cup (kind of like a kids sippy cup), and then i place it into a wine bottle gift bag (bag was helpfully supplied by my step-dad yesterday yay), pop it onto the arm of my crutch and then take it to the living room with me. For food, i'm eating mostly ready meals atm, so i'm popping them into a sealable plastic container, then into a carrier bag, and carrying that through.
If anyone has any better ideas on how to transport food, please do let me know xx
 

enoughpain

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@bumblebee2 Congratulations on reaching post-op status! Hope your pain stays manageable. Any chance you can borrow or rent a walker? You can hang all sorts of bags from that and transport is a little smoother.
 

Layla

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Welcome to BoneSmart, thanks for joining us! :welome:Congratulations on your new hip.

I'm sorry you had a bit of a rough start. It's good to hear your pain is well managed.
Exhaustion as you mentioned is normal early on. Your body has just experienced a controlled trauma and all of your energy is first going toward repair and healing, not allowing much stamina for anything else. Your strength will gradually increase. Take advantage and sleep when you're able. Our bodies do their best healing while we're asleep.

Another option for transporting food /drink from the kitchen to your favorite resting spot is a tray for your walker. Check out Amazon as they have a variety. If you're only using a crutch, you'll most likely need to carry one thing at a time, as you're doing.

Please read the Recovery Guidelines below. Begin with the article on Energy Drain to get a better understanding and also Activity Progression for THR as you mentioned you weren't sure what you should be doing at this point. It's only a rough guideline but will give you and idea of activity to target.

Stop back often, we'd love to support and encourage you as you begin the journey.
Wishing you comfort and a great Tuesday!

Hip Recovery: The Guidelines
1. Don’t worry: Your body will heal all by itself. Relax, let it, don't try and hurry it, don’t worry about any symptoms now, they are almost certainly temporary
2. Control discomfort:
rest
elevate
ice
take your pain meds by prescription schedule (not when pain starts!)​
3. Do what you want to do BUT
a. If it hurts, don't do it and don't allow anyone - especially a physical therapist - to do it to you
b. If your leg swells more or gets stiffer in the 24 hours after doing it, don't do it again.
4. PT or exercise can be useful BUT take note of these
5. At week 4 and after you should follow this
6. Access to these pages on the website

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

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?

BIG TIP: Hips actually don't need any exercise to get better. They do a pretty good job of it all on their own if given half a chance. Trouble is, people don't give them a chance and end up with all sorts of aches and pains and sore spots. All they need is the best therapy which is walking and even then not to excess.

We try to keep the forum a positive and safe place for our members to talk about their questions or concerns and to report successes with their joint replacement surgery.

While members may create as many threads as they like in a majority of BoneSmart's forums, we ask the at each member have only one recovery thread. This policy makes it easier to go back and review history before providing advice. @bumblebee2
 
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bumblebee2

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@bumblebee2 Congratulations on reaching post-op status! Hope your pain stays manageable. Any chance you can borrow or rent a walker? You can hang all sorts of bags from that and transport is a little smoother.
Thankyou :)
I was thinking about getting a walker or trolley of some kind, and that's probably what i'll do if i can't think of another solution (using crutches right now). Nowhere will lend me one afaik, and money is a little tight right now (i've just ordered a recliner chair due to needing to elevate my legs, and not wanting to be in bed so much) so that's something i'll do if i have to but would rather avoid. What i'd love to have (but i don't think it exists) is a tray that has strings on each corner, that are tied in the middle, with a long holding string coming up the middle. I could put my food on that, lower it to the floor, then pull it behind me as i travel into another room. I'm thinking of seeing if a friend will help me create it. Would be much cheaper to buy a plastic food tray and some string and make one of those than to buy a walker. Would also be super easy to store and keep for when i need it for my left hip gets done.
 

Layla

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bumblebee2

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Hi again, :wave:
Do an online search for an item called The Hopper. It's a large multiple pocket apron that you can wear/use to carry a variety of items, iPad, magazine, drink, cell phone and leak free food containers.
I think it could be the answer for you! :wink:
I like that, thankyou - i'm using a small flight bag atm to hold things that i need to transport from room to room, but love the Hopper. Would make it super easy to carry my tea/coffee with me.


I'm getting a lot of twisted muscle sensation in my entire leg and my foot appears to be turned in a slightly different direction to the way it was before. I'm guessing my surgeon fixed the anteversion i had/have when he did my hip. My poor muscles feel seriously sorry for themselves right now.
I spent a couple of hours this morning sleeping - was so tired, and then felt sick and shaky this evening, so went up to bed and read while lying there for a couple of hours.
Funny how much it takes out of you in the early days.

Something i noticed a moment ago as i was shifting position on the sofa, is that my leg now moves far more to the side than it's done for a long long long time. I shifted it carefully, waiting for the familiar bone on bone pain and expecting it to lock into place as usual (I have/had protrusio acetabuli, with incredibly restricted side to side movement).. but the only pain was from my muscles gently protesting.
Strange but really cool.
 
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Misscarol

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I have 2 walkers at home and will donate them to the local charity shop...where l have seen lots of them...so that might be the way to go...are you UK?? If so...you should have been able to get l from your local healthcare service...best of luck to you ...l am 7 weeks in to left THR...getting there , but finding it's not a quick fix...go with the flow.....
 

Calgal

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Funny how much it takes out of you in the early days.
Yup. But sleep is tonic to healing so do it as much as, wherever, whenever you can especially in these early days.

my leg now moves far more to the side than it's done for a long long long time.
Isn't that GREAT?!?!? The very first time I got up after surgery I was totally amazed that terrible bone on bone pain was gone!! :yahoo:And I'm still amazed and thankful every time I stand up and walk. Even though there is more healing to be done, I feel 10 years younger.

It's early days for you. Take it easy and read bonesmart posts to give you strength for better days ahead. :angel:
 

HipsterKat

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What i'd love to have (but i don't think it exists) is a tray that has strings on each corner, that are tied in the middle, with a long holding string coming up the middle.
This made me smile. You should see some of the contraptions that I’ve invented! Maybe you could patent it — you’ll need a catchy name for it.

:yes::wink:
 

HipsterKat

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Also, that exhaustion will eventually subside, but for now just go with it. If your body wants to sleep, let it!
:sleeep:
 

Elf1

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@bumblebee2 interesting, you're about the only one on here that I've seen mention protrusio acetabuli. That is a big part of my issue as well, hate when I lock up, can't do anything until it decides to let you move again. And we were supposed to have surgery the same day. Will definitely be checking out your recovery. Sounds like you're doing pretty good so far.
:friends:
 
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bumblebee2

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@bumblebee2 interesting, you're about the only one on here that I've seen mention protrusio acetabuli. That is a big part of my issue as well, hate when I lock up, can't do anything until it decides to let you move again. And we were supposed to have surgery the same day. Will definitely be checking out your recovery. Sounds like you're doing pretty good so far.
:friends:
Hi Elf1 :)

Lovely to meet someone else with the same issue (though really sorry you have it, it's really unpleasant i know). There are a few more people around with the same problem on here, can't remember any names right now, but i spoke to one or two when i first found this site and discovered the forums.
Locking up is awful isn't it. The only choice is to very carefully push the joint to where it should be, and then wait until the agony subsides and you can breathe again.

Definitely doing pretty well i think. I'm pushing myself too much though as i'm stubborn and have a habit of forgetting that i need to recover. It startles me every time my body screeches and tells me to sit and rest.

What's happening with your surgery? have you had to delay it or something? - you'll love your new hip i think, it's painful at first, and for the first 3 days I have to admit that i had a few moments of regret, but after those, i started seeing small improvements every day. I think today has to be the best so far in many ways though, because even though i was shattered and spent much of it in bed, i've gained a huge amount of sensation back in my leg, and i managed to lift my foot more than an inch off the floor xx
 
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bumblebee2

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This made me smile. You should see some of the contraptions that I’ve invented! Maybe you could patent it — you’ll need a catchy name for it.

:yes::wink:
lol, i would genuinely love to see some of your contraptions. It's pretty cool what people can come up with when they need to find a way of doing something.

:)

I'm definitely going to try my tray idea out i think.. a lady that lives near to me has a spare mobility scooter that she's happy to loan to me for a small amount of money each week, so i'll get her to pop it round tomorrow or thurs, and pick up the bits i need. Hopefully i can find a tray in the pound shop near to me.
 

Eman85

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interesting, you're about the only one on here that I've seen mention protrusio acetabuli.
I guess most of us don't know or care what it's really called, just know that when it locks it hurts to get it moving again. My left one had gotten pretty bad with locking up, now my Rt does it. People look at you when you're locked and trying to move and they can hear it pop when it moves.
 

Elf1

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@bumblebee2 I was sitting in pre-op on the 26th waiting to go back when they informed us that my OS had been in an accident on the way in, so surgery was cancelled for that day. Big bummer but ready for Monday so I can get this show on the road again.

I think we all have the issue of pushing too much, even pre-surgery. Was sweeping floors, mopping, vacuuming and washing rugs on Monday and am now paying for it, the second day in a row. Still have things I want to do but trying to take it slow.

You'll have to post a picture when you complete your tray.
 
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bumblebee2

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@bumblebee2 I was sitting in pre-op on the 26th waiting to go back when they informed us that my OS had been in an accident on the way in, so surgery was cancelled for that day. Big bummer but ready for Monday so I can get this show on the road again.

I think we all have the issue of pushing too much, even pre-surgery. Was sweeping floors, mopping, vacuuming and washing rugs on Monday and am now paying for it, the second day in a row. Still have things I want to do but trying to take it slow.

You'll have to post a picture when you complete your tray.
Definitely; I was up til 3:30am on the morning of my surgery. wallpapering the chimney breast in the living room. Super glad i did it because it looks great (although i didn't quite manage to finish it, i ran out of wallpaper), but knew i'd usually be paying for that hugely the next day. I figured that i'd be knocked out with a general for a couple of hours anyway and could rest after that.
Take it easy on yourself, recovering from a day of using grumpy hips too much isn't anyones idea of a good enough day.

So so sorry about your surgery :( - what a nightmare for you, glad the surgery is going ahead on Monday though. I'll keep my fingers crossed and hope recovery is textbook perfect.

Will def post a picture when i've made my tray, i'm going to do it on friday afternoon sometime if i can find the right bits for it. I've got an appt to change my dressing in the afternoon, so i'll take the opportunity to do some small bits and pieces while i'm in town. I won't make a separate trip for it before then, as the exhaustion is making me want to hibernate most of the time. I might even take myself for a coffee if i'm feeling good enough afterwards. Be so nice to get further than the end of my road (that's as far as i've managed to walk so far)
 
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bumblebee2

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So, day 11 i think since my hip was replaced, and progress is pretty good i think.
I've had a really swollen foot and ankle for the last 3 days.. i was panicking a bit about it being a blood clot, but Dr Google convinced me that it's much more likely to be oedema.. and since i didn't die in my sleep on the first night it happened (yup.. my brain did go through that scenario), and it reduces a little by elevating it overnight, i'm going with oedema. My ankle is a lot more normal looking today, so it looks like i've just put on someone elses foot - weird but kind of an amusing look.
Yesterday the area around my dressing seemed quite warm to the touch, and felt really sore, but it didn't feel quite like an infection to me.. so i ignored my daughters advice of going over to the urgent care centre, and decided to leave it until this morning. Thankfully it seems like i was correct to trust my instincts, and i woke to find that the area was roughly the same temperature as the same place on my other leg.
I did think yesterday that it's more likely that tissues were being inflamed by the movement of the implant, and it would settle once the tissues and implant were a bit friendlier with eachother. As i'm walking around today, the area is once again becoming a bit irritated and sore and warm to the touch, so i'll make sure i take it easy and listen to my what my hip needs.

I took my first few steps yesterday with a single cane!! - it felt really good. Not something i'll be repeating on a regular basis just yet, but i'll practice it a couple of times over the next days and hopefully by this time next week, it will feel more and more comfortable. I'm already having happy daydreams of bringing a cup of tea in a real cup to my chair in the front room :) - or a plate of food.. i'd be happy with anything right now as long as it's on a real plate and not in a plastic container.

Microwave meals are not my friends.. i miss my own cooking.. i miss standing in the kitchen with a pot of something bubbling away. Chilli, stew.. soup even. And my oven.. i really miss my oven. I can't reach into it atm without breaking the 90 degree rule. I'd love to cook a chicken and roast potatoes or something right now.

I keep leaving my grabber upstairs, so i'm becoming super skilled at using my crutches as though they're huge chopsticks. I can now pick up books, the remote control for the television, socks, cushions etc.
Utterly useless if i drop a painkiller on the floor of course, but the grabber is great for that when i go upstairs and bring it down with me.
The only thing i've not managed so far is socks.. i'm useless at the sock aid thingy they gave me. I keep managing to get them halfway on, but no further. Socks that only go to mid foot, aren't the best look, so i'll just have to deal with it. I'm just happy that it's Summer and i can live in dresses and skirts and not worry about my feet getting too cold :)

I didn't manage to get out to town on the mobility scooter unfortunately. I underestimated how long getting ready would take and how much of a struggle it would be to get onto the scooter. I ended up cancelling the appt for changing my dressing (re-booked for tues at a clinic my doctor runs that's closer to my home). I took a short trip to the local shops on the scooter instead and discovered that it's actually really difficult to manouvre one of those things through the narrow aisles of the Tescos. Plus really difficult to get what you want while you're there because of the lack of ability to twist and reach/pick up things. I did however manage to get the essentials (paracetamol and a sandwich), so that's a definite positive.

All in all, i'm still super exhausted a lot of the time, but i'm not sleeping as much as in the first week after surgery. I can feel my energy levels returning to a decent level now and it's nice to be able to go upstairs and back down again, without feeling like i need to sleep for a while afterwards.
 

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