THR Femoral nerve damage support?

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Schaargi

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@Schaargi I did not remember this nerve damage about you, I'm sorry!
Speaking from airport experience with a cane, it didn't help keep folks away from me one little bit. Everybody was oblivious to it unless we were standing in the boarding line.

Is your school small enough that the student body could learn to practise caution for you? "Watch out that Ms Schaargi has plenty of room to maneuver! Carry her briefcase for brownie points!" Sometimes kids can be taught compassion by the strangest things.

My DIL is an elementary teacher, whose district hasn't made up its mind yet. I was listening in on a zoom call while babysitting the baby, and apparently one of the measures that's under consideration is, keep the kids 10 feet apart on the playground. Can you imagine trying that with lower grades??!!
 
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Schaargi

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Our school district is going back in person, but I'm sure there will be parents who will opt out. The district/school is planning to maintain social distancing and I'm sure everyone will do all that is in their power to keep me safe. As with the little kids, I don't quite trust the middle schoolers to keep their wits about them all the time. I can plan my movements around the passing periods for sure. I'm just worried about the errant kid who is in his own world. It only takes one.

I do think being in a different environment would help with my movement and recovery. It is a larger area than my house, with different configurations and different reasons for getting out of my chair and moving in different ways. Variety helps. I just wish I could have bits of variety without the element of unpredictable people. And germs.

I am certainly planning to phase in; I'm just not sure how that will look. I will also need to get a substitute for the times I won't be there.

I'm seeing the physician's assistant for my 6 week check next week and hope that I can convince her to support me in a less aggressive return to work.

Thanks, all!
 

Hip4life

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This is where it gets hard to advocate for yourself with so many pressures on you. Delay as long as possible. Being back at that daily physical/mental engagement is a challenge under the best of circumstances. Then a phased return is the next best thing. Getting your OS backing you will help immensely. I’m in healthcare and can identify with many things that are similar in the two. My dad was a special ed educator. Even now I’m nervous about just helping out for a couple of hours at work (I’m basically retired) with the Covid situation. I haven’t been back since April. It was important enough for my health to take the cut in income. My family agreed. I know not everyone is in that position. You are NOT paranoid. It is still a legitimate concern. That’s why it’s so important for you to advocate for yourself and your health. Only you can. My best wishes in coming to a win-win decision for yourself. You have my utmost admiration in being an educator. Keep us updated. ❤ Pat.
 

zauberflöte

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@Schaargi "middle schoolers" and "wits" in the same sentence is somewhat of an oxymoron....:rotfl:

I agree with you about a new environment being good for your daily activities. I agree with everything @Hip4life said-- she covered every point. Go in to that appointment with an agenda, and lead it. You go! Team Bonesmart has your back!
 
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Schaargi

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Here's an update on my 6-week followup appointment with the physician's assistant (PA).

In a nutshell: My x-rays look fine, the hip seems to be moving around the way it should, my numb quads are showing signs of waking up.

I expressed concerns about not being able to sleep, having pain where the drain incision was, as well as pain in my hip flexor and glutes. The PA checked my glutes and hip flexor and agreed that they are tight from compensating for my dead quads, so to try massage or ice/heat. The restrictions for the anterior approach prohibits the two stretches that would help (extending back and the Figure 4 glute stretch).

She didn't have any suggestions regarding sleep or medication management when I asked. I asked about returning to work and how long I needed the leg brace. She told me the leg brace was up to my physical therapist but would ask the surgeon. She agreed with me that I was not ready to go back to work/school.

The surgeon came in and looked at how I walked without the brace and said I could go without it! Yay! He thought I might be able to go back sooner than 12 weeks, but I asked him if I could come in for a reevaluation in another 4 weeks (at 10 weeks). I'm so relieved that neither of them were pushing me.

So I'm contacting Human Resources to see how to work out the logistics. They are completely swamped with teachers requesting leave due to COVID.

My main concerns now are my inability to sleep, my pain levels being just high enough that I can't cut down my meds, and the frustration of my muscles atrophying. Whew! I am relieved that many of my questions were answered and that I'm not trapped in the brace forever.

Thanks to @Going4fun for an educator's perspective and advice!
 

Mojo333

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Very glad you got some more healing time...:) :-) (:
I had a really hard time getting good sleep also...my daytime power naps somehow sustained me the first months.
Congrats on losing the brace...just be really careful.

No falling.:no-fin:
That's against the rules.:) :-) (:
Hope today is a good day.
 

leejaa

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Sleep is so difficult at times after surgeries and especially if you are experiencing pain. Keep icing and medicate as needed for now. You worry about your muscles atrophying but this will not be forever as you continue to recovery which can take up to a year for full recovery the muscles come back. Walking correctly and slowly increasing activities really brings these back. Our bodies are quite wonderful in their abilities to heal if we give them time and listen to them. Glad that you are able to stay out of work longer and give yourself time to feel better. I was mainly sedentary for 6+ months before my last hip replacement and now at 8m after replacement I can walk without issues and my muscles are back and I can pretty much do anything I want.
 
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Schaargi

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Gah! I fell last night.

I was walking down the 3 steps into our garage, briefly lost my focus, and stepped down with my bad leg, causing it to buckle. I crumpled on to my knee and have a bump on my knee and a little scrape on my hand.

Yeah, you are going to ask about the brace.... Actually, I think it was,good I didn't have the brace on. If I had, I would have tipped over instead of crumpled, falling with much more force.

I just took my focus away for an instant (asked my husband which car we were taking) and stepped down with the wrong leg.

So I'm icing my knee today in addition to my hip. I meet with the physical therapist today and will see what she says.

Dang.
 

Mojo333

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Your new hip is sturdier than you think.

Certainly glad you didn't hurt yourself worse...sorry your knee is sore.:unsure:
Ice it up along with that hip.
It seems that it is still a bit unpredictable so please keep with a Walker or cane of you think that would be helpful.
Just a snapshot in time...you'll lose these as things get better.
 
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Schaargi

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Yeah, I had my cane but simply wasn't paying attention. I am now. That was super scary and I don't want to do it again!
 

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@Schaargi
I am so sorry that you are experiencing issues related to the nerve injury, and glad to read that this is already improving.
Random thought related to the resulting loss of quad/extensor mass and strength - has your PT said anything about electrical stimulation? I am a vet and we use this all the time for nerve injuries. It can really help to maintain muscle function and minimize atrophy while the nerve heals and re-learns how to control the muscle. The units are small and usually covered by insurance; many include TENS functionality that can be used for pain management, as well.
 
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Schaargi

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@Schaargi
Random thought related to the resulting loss of quad/extensor mass and strength - has your PT said anything about electrical stimulation?
Yes! My PT is doing "Russian stim" on my quads, and I truly believe it is why I am improving. It is certainly helping me regain functionality. That leg is noteably skinnier than the other one, and I can feel muscles all over my body atrophying because I can't do much of any exercise due largely to the risk of falling. Thank you so much for suggesting it!
 

zauberflöte

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@Schaargi I have done that fall only it was from a turned ankle from walking off the edge of a little pothole in the dark. Ouch! Your xrays were good, I'll bet you'll be fine, if chastened. We had those garage steps, really steep, NO RAILING!, and the litter boxes and washer/dryer were down there. I went down sideways, heart quaking, clinging to the door frame for dear life, for months! And after, I am still terrified of any brick steps! (To be fair, many decades ago I toppled down a flight of six while utterly exhausted, sprained both ankles, both wrists, and whacked my knees on the slate af the bottom...).

Those two stretches will be yours to own just as soon as your OS clears you-- I love doing them. And sitting tailor fashion. What do they call it now? Crisscross applesauce?

Sleep, the elusive. I slept as much during the day for my first hip as I did at night. Second hip was a good bit easier on my sleep patterns, but every few days I'd lie down on the couch of a noon-time with a nap attack.
 
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Schaargi

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Hi all,

I'm just shy of 7 weeks (THR anterior approach) and am having issues with my pain. My nerve damage is improving (yay!!!!), but the past week, I feel like I my pain is the same as it was before the surgery.

My hip flexors and glutes were painful before (I thought because of compensating when I walked) and they are still painful. I did some adjustments to my meds this week-- I stopped taking the massive amounts of aspirin to avoid clots.

In addition to hurting, I'm really unsteady. I have truly taken it easy this week and I'm not bouncing back.

Now that my nerve seems to be healing, I keep waiting for that feeling of walking without pain and it's not happening.

Is this just part of the ups and downs of post op?
 
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Schaargi

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So without the extra pain meds, my pain is in the same places it was before surgery. I'm concerned that the surgery didn't fix it. Does that happen? (I know I sound a bit paranoid).

(Edit to post, 5 minutes after original post)

Wait. I just went back and read a reply I wrote to someone else who was discouraged and realize that I need to back off if it hurts, just like I told her. Sheesh.
 

cstinchcomb

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Your fall sounds scary, so glad you are OK. Before I got hip no. 1 replaced, it would give out without warning, ugh. We had a lot of steps in that house, I am lucky I didn't kill myself.

Glad to hear that your quad is starting to wake up ... hope it's fully awake soon. That is probably making a lot of this just ... take longer ... . Of course it always takes longer than any of us wants ... on the plus side, seems like your incision is healing up well and your xrays look good :). I am no doctor but I bet this nerve thing exacerbates instability.

Ok. This might seem like a step backwards, but here goes. If I were feeling unstable, I'd be using two crutches when I was out, and probably one around the house. For me, crutches feel a lot more usable and stable than the cane, and a lot better balanced side to side. Then you can walk safely when you are out, practice your gait, practice your weight bearing, without worrying so much about each step. Maybe ask your PT what they think? Maybe give them a try at PT and see if you like them?

If I had pain, I'd sure consider taking a Tylenol unless it was fixed with ice.

Truly best wishes ... it's still really early in recovery ... and that squiggly diagram really is correct.
 

zauberflöte

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In addition, @Schaargi dear soul, YOU FELL three days ago! You would hurt even if you had perfectly good "born-with" hips and made that fall. When I fall I head for the ice and the advil (my cocktail of choice for sprains, strains, and huge bruises).

This too shall pass :yes: and meanwhile:ice: be cool...
 

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