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THR Diary of my journey to happy times

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Klassy

Klassy

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Thanks for the blood thinner article. I wish I’d known before. Though maybe I didn’t read the instructions fully. Anyway now I’m well prepared.

@SurreyGirl, I had realised you only got the single room in NHS by good chance, and after a day in recovery room waiting for a bed at all. I was told by NHS that if I got lucky I might end up in the same private hospital that I paid for, free on NHS, because they used it when the queues got too long. But I didn’t take that gamble.

I’ve just been on page 10 of your blog and read that you had a 3 year wait from diagnosis of bone on bone to op. What the...?!! How did that happen? I’ll now stop feeling aggrieved about the 15 month estimated that my wait would have been!
 

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@Klassy As well as some of the other recommendations that will make the earlier days easier- I'd really recommend a frame that fits round your loo- especially if you haven't got a raised seat- as the frame basically provides arm rests that you can use to lower and raise yourself. The NHS gave me one when I had my first op in 2017 and I bought a further one via Amazon for my other loo. If only I could have had one to take with me when I was going out!
 

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@Klassy So sorry to read about your low blood pressure and fall. Very scary indeed. Great to read your new hip is fine and no fractures anywhere. Not the way you needed to start your recovery. I have low blood pressure, which become quite low post op. Keeping hydrated really helps!

I have a raised toilet seat with arms, and it is really great for the first six weeks. Can't recommend it enough.

The advice on this forum is invaluable!
Wishing you a comfortable evening :flwrysmile:
 
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Klassy

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Day 7, new hip and I have now been together a whole week.

Things seem to be healing ok. The incision itself is not nearly as horrible as I thought it would be, I wouldn’t really know it was there. The pain around the hip and thigh is rarely worse than pre op level and mostly better. The parts of the process I didn’t expect, ie self injecting, compression stockings, constipation and slight feeling of nausea, aren’t getting any more enjoyable and the road ahead looks long. I’ll hope the first two will be things I get used to, and the last two go away. I’m getting in supplies of all the anti constipation remedies that might possibly help and stopped the codeine again. I understand the principle that I mustn’t let pain hold me back from mobilising, but pain isn’t the issue for me, it’s fainting, or the fear of fainting, and I think the general sense of unwellness that comes from being backed up feeds into my paranoia about feeling giddy.

The lightheadedness is a pest, I have lost all confidence since the fall so have gone backwards in achieving any independence. I now make sure H is there before getting up to use crutches. H is being very supportive, bless him. I have cut out coffee entirely and ration myself to one cup of tea a day, drinking loads of water instead and 2 small glasses of OJ a day. This has paid off in other ways too as last night I didn’t need to get up for the loo. I do things like brushing teeth while sitting down. We have a shower seat now, it is not the style I would like, being a bench without back or raised arms, but is the only model on Amazon which would fit the shower (our downstairs loo, basin and shower were fitted into the understair cupboard, so ultra compact). I have been eyeing it wistfully but sticking with sponging myself down outside the shower for now till I feel more stable. Then I will practise a dry run, literally, to check the stepping in and turning round etc works before we add water to the mix. I should, with hindsight, have practised this pre op, and also sitting in the chair which I now find is not comfortable enough. But pre op I was so busy with other stuff that I wanted to get out of the way, and also didn’t want to think about the op because it made me frightened. Anyway I feel fine without the shower, except that my hair is getting to the itchy and disgusting stage.

At the moment I am sitting in the chair in the kitchen where I can watch the robin eat the mealworms I got H to put out, and see the sunshine. What more could one ask? Well, except for a more comfy seat! But that may be a good thing actually, it makes me stand up and down a few times every so often to ease it and it must be good to keep moving. This is my first venture out of bed except to the bathroom, and of course the day trip to the seaside aka the A&E . Also as a break from sitting I have walked the length of dining room to kitchen, 20 steps each way. So that’s a start, and I’ll build up from there.
 

Layla

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If all else fails, here's some additional info for your Constipation arsenal.
Hope today is a good day!
@Klassy

Pumpkin Purée has been suggested as a cure for Constipation.
With Pumpkin Puree' being the ONLY ingredient in the can.
Cinnamon can be sprinkled on top.

This is the "Bomb" recipe for anyone Brave (or Desperate) enough to use it.
  • one dose liquid milk of magnesia in an 8 oz. measuring cup
  • fill to 8 oz. mark with prune juice
  • Add 1 Tbsp. dark Karo syrup
  • Heat in microwave
  • Enjoy.
The Candy Apple
  • one dose of MoM in an 8 oz. measuring cup
  • fill to 8 oz. mark with apple juice
  • spoonful of brown sugar
  • Heat in microwave
  • Enjoy
Thoughts on the Bomb:
  • Beware starting this recipe if you've only purchased Cherry Flavored MoM
  • DH got "100% Prune Juice" as opposed to the store brand kind where (though it said 100% Prune Juice, the first ingredient was Water, which made DH deem if unacceptable) :bignono: The consistency of the PJ he got was very thick/syrupy.
  • I think the idea of the Karo was to sweeten the pot.... but with the cherry flavor and the Karo the resulting hot drink was sickeningly sweet and had the texture of hot beef gravy.
Thoughts on the Candy Apple:

  • I didn't make this, but if I were going to - I'd get the regular MoM
  • Buy the cheapest Apple Juice you can find...
  • I would error on the side of too little brown sugar, at least to start.
 

Bone-obo

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The lightheadedness is a pest
Isn't it? Fortunately I have it on very good authority (me) that it eventually goes away.

At the moment I am sitting in the chair in the kitchen where I can watch the robin eat the mealworms I got H to put out, and see the sunshine. What more could one ask?
Exactly!!

Loving your blog, by the way. The detail in no way puts me off - keep it up!

If all else fails, here's some additional info for your Constipation arsenal.
In addition to icons for "like", "agree", "funny" and the lot, we clearly need one for "scary."
 
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Klassy

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I’m awake at 4am, but don’t care, because way-hay, hip hip hooray, insert dancing joy emojis here all you clever clogs who know how to do that, because, well, the full on assault on my innards has been successful. I won’t go into the gross details but basically, after trying all the natural remedies to no avail, poor H was sent to the supermarket to stock up on every available pharmaceutical aid. ( I’m hoping now he had the foresight not to use our loyalty card, or I hate to think of all the special offers we’ll be targeted with now.). I may have overdone it a tad because there is quite a lot of gurgling going on, but I can live with that.

@Bone-obo I have had a quick look at your thread, I am in awe that you could walk 60 steps the first night and went home after one night. That makes a second thread I’m glad I didn’t read beforehand, it would have raised my expectations way too high. I note that you have a second hip even newer than mine, I’ll fast forward and see how that one is going.... What?! You went out to the theatre? Have I got this right, that was about Day 3, or am I seriously muddling the timeline? I made it to the living room and watched some TV for the first time today/yesterday ie Day 7. Just as well it’s not a competition!
 
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Bone-obo

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What?! You went out to the theatre? Have I got this right,
I know! I’m as surprised as anyone, but I think you have to take these things on their own terms, and this one wants to go out! No idea why - last time I was too sore and dizzy to think about trips further than the loo. Maybe this is the surgical equivalent of a hole in one. (See what I did there?)
 
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It’s got off to a great start in every way thank you @Mojo333
:happydance::yay::dancy:
You are going to have to tell me how you did that, or I suppose I can continue to cut and paste your little darlings
 

Mojo333

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Screenshot_20181218-070956.png
Don't know what device you are on but see that smiley up there in the row.
Click on it and it will bring categories of emojis.:curtsey:
 
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Klassy

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Day 8: I must be much better because I am now feeling guilty that I have spent most of the morning lolling in bed reading the paper and playing patience. The patience is an online game on which I had to go cold turkey a few years ago because I was wasting so much time on it. I banked it away to use as a compensation in time of need, like the last few days, and it has been better than morphine. Truly! However it is seriously addictive stuff. So I hereby declare that I will have today to indulge and then I am putting it aside until hip 2. Another reason to look forward to hip 2!

I’m guessing that ODIC stands for overdid it club? I shall try to steer my way between that and SUDIS (slothful under did it society). It would be insane to measure myself against those peculiar people who go out dancing the can-can in their hospital gown (you know who you are) as they are clearly from some different planet. But I shall record my own progress and push the envelope very gently.

So I have my routine for getting up without risk of lightheadedness:

Do the lying down exercises
Sit to stand 10 times on edge of bed. (Get blood moving while still in safe zone)
Walk a length of the available indoor space, about 50 ft round trip. Skip this step (omit it I mean, not skip with a rope, that would endanger the ornaments) in case of urgency for loo.
Loo as required.
Set of standing exercises. I have achieved my goal of 5 sets a day on Days 6 and 7.
More lengths, will keep a daily tally of distance, perhaps record it as time once I extend the area to patrol. But I’m sticking indoors for now. I had only done the minimum of walking until yesterday evening, when I twigged that it was probably a factor in the constipation, so made the effort.

I have read comments on here about people working on their style for walking. That hadn’t previously entered my thoughts, it was about getting from a to b. I’m not going to worry too much at this stage, my walking is gradually feeling more relaxed and I think that is the first goal. At first I was putting a lot of weight on my hands on the crutches, which apart from anything else wasn’t doing my wrists any favours. So I do try to concentrate on not leaning on the crutches.
 
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@Mojo333 it’s an iPad. Ido see the emojis as you outline but none of them dance! And in fact, though I think I did post a smiley face earlier, it didn’t seem to work last time
Edit: or this time.

Edit again, PS not to worry, I love seeing them in other people’s posts, if I could do it that might spoil the magic , smiley
 

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Good Morning, Klassy
Great to read youre doing better. Please be careful with the exercises as many end up in the ODIC
(Over Did It Club) early on by exercising too much or repetitively putting their hip through moves that are unnecessary and counterproductive to healing. Ask yourself if you'd be going through the same motions if you sustained the trauma you're recovering from in a car wreck. Please take it slow and easy. We don't want to see develop unnecessary pain, or suffer set backs.
As a reminder, here is the big tip from the Recovery Guidelines -

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.

Once you hit the yellow smiley face are the categories coming up like -
Lols, Christmas, happy, good, bad, sad-puzzled, fright, tired, unwell, pets, signs, sporty, miscellaneous?
The dancing emojis are under the (happy) category. Hope this helps.
A great Tuesday to you!
@Klassy
 
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@Layla , thanks for the tip, I will be careful! It’s about having a great post op result, not a quick one.

I don’t see the moving emojis, and the static ones show in draft but not when I post. But don’t worry! I don’t want to be having to wean myself off emoji overuse along with the meds and the patience-playing (tiny image of Walter White waving).
 
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Final tally for Day 8
10 indoor circuits, as 4 4 2
3 sets standing exercises, that meets guidance (3 to 5 daily) . I felt a little twinge on 3rd set so I thought with the extra walking I had better stop at that. I don’t count the lying down exercises because I do them quite frequently to make up for all the lying down, they don’t amount to much more than a wriggle.

And, not so good, first set of tears. Some trivial frustration and it all got too much. Ah well, was sure to come sometime.

I hope everyone else has had/ is having a good day. I’ve been browsing through and find it fascinating how we have so much in common, but so many different experiences along the way. Even in the way it goes for first hip and second hip.
 
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Day 9: Circuits 12 (4,2,2,4)
Standing exercises 4
Trips to loo - uncounted, but many! Definitely ODIC on the laxatives. It’s been about 48 hours now, surely they should be out of my system soon?

Walking was improved. At the hospital, I was shown how to use crutches: crutches first, bad leg, good leg catch up, repeat. I noticed this morning that I was actually walking so that the good leg passed the bad one a few inches instead of stopping level, which is getting towards normal gait. By tonight I’d reverted to the short shuffle style, I think because I was more tired. Anyway I’m encouraged to think it may come naturally as I get stronger and more confident.

My surgeon told me at the pre op assessment that it would probably feel like the operated leg was longer, but it was just a feeling that would go away. I said it would be fine by me if he added a couple of inches, he could add the same to the other leg when he did that one as I would like to be taller. He looked quite affronted by such levity and said that was not going to happen. I could tell he was a perfectionist, which is a very good thing in a surgeon. Anyway I am grateful he warned me because the operated leg does indeed feel about a quarter inch longer than the other leg. And the feeling is diminishing, as promised.

I had my first shower at home! The shower seat has been awaiting me for a couple of days, but when I tried it out, it turned out that there was just enough room for me to stand in the shower next to it, but not to sit down. So I had to take a chance on standing. H had insisted on buying a couple of suction grip handholds. I hadn’t wanted them because I didn’t trust the suction to work if I really needed it, ie if I slipped and put a lot of weight on one. I tried them gingerly and indeed they did move even with gentle pressure. So they were abandoned too, but I managed with the help of dearest H to step in and out and he passed me the soap and shampoo so that I could always keep one hand resting on the wall for balance. Oh the joy of clean hair! I am very glad I got my hair cut shorter than usual the week before the op.

Changed dressing. The nurse showed us how to do it before I left hospital, but when it came to it neither H nor I could remember, so phoned for instructions. Memo to self, video these demonstrations! Should have done with the demo of self injection too. Anyway, as I my surgeon uses glue not stitches the strips directly on the skin stay till they come off by themselves at about Day 14, it was just the transparent cover that was removed and replaced. It was fine once we eventually sussed it out.
 
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Layla

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I agree with you on the suction cup bars. I would not trust those things!
First showers are great. There are so many firsts after THR and most of them make us realize all
we took for granted before the pain of OA robbed our mobility and flexibility.
You're doing great! Keep it up.
I hope your sleep is sweet. :yawn: :sleep:
@Klassy
 
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