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Weird Harold

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I am a little over three weeks post-op and I think I am having some bouts with depression. Mood swings, easily angered, etc. Is this to be expected?
 

Jamie

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Hi, Weird Harold! Welcome to BoneSmart! In this case, you are not "weird" at all. It is very common to experience depression after major surgery like this and taking prescription pain medications add even more opportunity for those blue feelings. It normally shows up at around 3 weeks and can last a while as you are healing. Be sure you are eating well and getting enough rest. Sometimes it also helps if you can get out of the house a little.
 
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Hello Weird Harold,
It is so nice to meet you. Harold,... Jamie is right on!! She always is, about these things. It is a mixture of things surgery, meds, and being house bound. But it does get better. I hope that everything is moving right along in your recovery. When you get to feel down and out just hop on here and tells us about!! We are good listeners.
 

Texas

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Hi Harold boy did I ever you know go outside and sit a lil or have a neighbor come by it lets you know things are still going on and you are a part of it......It dos get better try not to let yourself get to down we are pulling for you.............
 

Josephine

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I've had a couple or three major surgeries over the years and had the 'post-op blues' with all of them. It's perfectly natural so please don't worry.
 

kangaroo

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Hi Harold,
Depression.....the black dog....sneaks up on you when you are not expecting it.....think about it this way....you have been in pain for months, but your body is used to it....its adapted slowly to the increasing disability.....so then you think to yourself ....I'll get it replaced and I'll be up and running....life will be good and agile again.....? (incidentally all that is true and will happen).....but thr is a waiting game.....and a healing game.....so then what happens is the surgery takes place....and your poor body goes through mayhem.....anaesthetic, hip cut out, stitches, swelling, drugs,narcotics......so now you are in a compromised position....fragile...not just physically but emotionally as well....you have pain, restrictions, you feel disabled again at least to some extent....(and yet somewhere in your mind you think you should be "better" than you are)....and then you have people telling you that you need to get on with it.....but that feels scary...after all the restrictions are in place.....but you WANT to get on with it (after all that was the point of the surgery, wasn't it?)....and then you look around the house and see all sorts of things that suddenly desperately NEED fixing....but of course at this point you are not able to fix them and so you have to sit there looking at them....and thats frustrating....and all this time you are still on pain killers (which believe me is better than the pain).....and of course there are the issues of the chemical imbalance in your system which interfere with your brains ability to cope emotionally....you haven't been able to get out and about....so there's not much sunlight on your back to give you a bit of a seratonin hit, there's limited aerobic activity, there's loss of control of your situation...all of this causes depression, and then there are the unknown causes....

I guess the bottom line is.....you've just had major surgery and the depression can be part of it for many people......so don't stress about it, try to get out a little, have some positive interactions with people who inspire you and make sure you have some good food each day.....check that you have enough vitamins on board ......and most of all have patience and don't get too hard on yourself....forgiveness is part of this game.....and if it gets extreme see your doctor who will be able to help you more

Rachel
 

kjt

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'roo - I really like the first part of your post...EXACTLY what I feel like....Like - This is worse than before surgery. Well, DUH...of course it is.. OK..but its tough convincing parts of my brain that this is a complete non-issue.

My mood was pretty much all over the place today!

Got some anti-nausea meds...hopefully a little less tummy discomfort will help.
 

Josephine

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What's that old saying? Sometimes things have to get worse before they get better. Never a truer word ....
 

MCB

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i too had major surgery before. It is such a trauma to the body. I studied psychology in college and firmly believe that our physical condition can have a physical effect on the brain -- causing depression.

add to that - that you are sick, tired, having pain, having trouble sleeping and can't take care of yourself -- you are a prime target for depression. I am surprised that many people don't have a bout of depression after a major trauma to the body.

i agree that it gets better with time and as your body heals. just accpeting that it is a normal reaction to the operation can give you the peace of mind that you are not going "crazy".

we all have things that make us feel better. an ipod can be your best friend for a while. pets are great too. my cat never left my side for
three weeks. i got terrible insomnia for a few days too. i read lots of light reading magazines. gabbing with friends is helpful too.

and best of all -- you can get on here and we'll listen and encourage you to hang in there. one day you find you aren't depressed anymore -- you are very excited and happy with your surgical results.

one other thing ---- funny movies --- a good belly laugh flick can make a dark day much brighter! and share it with your caretaker/family. they deserve a break too.

all the best MCB
 

pkuznets

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Kangaroo, you totally nailed it! I felt a bit blue and sad at about 3 weeks, too, and for all of the colliding reasons 'roo stated in her post. It does pass--really. Do your pt exercises with deliberate intent in order to feel good about yourself and exert some level of control--no matter how small. I rented The Bucket List and watched it with my caregiver (my 77 year old mom). Then, I thought about all the things I want to do when my new hips makes it possible. Seinfeld is good, too. Just keep things lite and don't sweat the small stuff!
Best of luck,
Patrikya
 
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Weird Harold

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Thank you, everyone.
I am five weeks post-op now. Therapy is going well and I am back at work. I have a desk job. I am feeling better in both mind and body. Kangaroo must write for a living, she described everything I was feeling.
Thanks again.
 
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