Bilateral THR getting worried

Grateful mo

new member
Nov 6, 2021
United States United States
Hi all i am day 33 days post two new hips both anterior approach . unfortunately my left side had a femoral fracture during surgery and was fixed with a titanium band. that pain has subsided thank god but my left side is significantly weaker than my right . on my new right hip i can stand unsupported my left still needs help to do everything and requires support of both hands on the walker. i feel like i should be further along . the most ive walked is a half mile in almost five weeks and it’s a struggle . am i expecting too much ? feels like i’m going to be on this walker forever and feel nowhere near getting back to work
@Grateful mo Welcome to BoneSmart! What was the date of your surgery. We will put the information in your signature for you.

At only days out of what is a very major operation I think you are being too hard on yourself. Please reset your expectations. I'll post some information below with guidelines on this recovery. The timeframe for bilateral surgery may indeed be longer than listed.

Way too early to think about a return to work. The recommended time off work is 10-12 weeks and then a Phased return to work.

It is not uncommon to have a weaker side post bilateral. Just give it time and don't try and push through any discomfort. Patience prescribed in large doses.

Here are your recovery guidelines:
Hip Recovery: The Guidelines
We are all different, as are the approaches to this recovery and rehab. The key is, “Find what works for YOU.“ Your doctor(s), physiotherapist(s) and BoneSmart are here to help. But you have the final decision as to what approach you use.

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:
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 this BoneSmart philosophy for sensible post op therapy
5. Here is a week-by-week guide for Activity progression for THRs
6. Access 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 that each member have only one recovery thread. This policy makes it easier to go back and review history before providing advice.
thank you so much for the info .my surgery was october 4th . i will read all of this and maybe i am pushing to hard . I am having a bad day today and was going to go upstairs and exercise but maybe I should just elevate ice and take a day off my knee is really starting to bother me and I feel like that is my primary limiting factor right now thanks again!
I hope you have a speedy recovery. Don't push too hard, know your limits. I understand as I'm apt to push to hard also. I only had one hip done but understand the limits.
thank you all . my doc doesn’t start PT until 4 weeks out i see him on monday and will probably get a script. i was starting some very simple exercises at home but sounds like your recommendation is nothing but walking yet . sounds good to me just wondering why my right side i can stand on unsupported and the left still requires support of both hands on walker ? could that because of the femur fracture - would it impact the left leg strength that much ? thanks again
If the fracture is on the left side then yes, that side is going to be more tender and take more time to heal. You are recovering from 2 hip replacements and a fracture. It could also be that your right leg is the dominant one. Please give it time.
Just my opinion on why the leg with the fracture is weaker. Most likely they had to do more manipulation of all of the soft tissue to put the band on. If you really think about what they do to us on a non complicated THR it's amazing we can recover and return to normal.
I'd say none of us will tell on you if you take a couple of days off and ice and rest. It's also a good way to determine if exercising is causing more pain than gain.
:welome:, my fellow bilateral hippy friend.
I had one leg that was definitely weaker, as Jaycey mentioned....not uncommon.
Also as Eman said, makes sense that there may have been more trauma with that leg.
My right leg kept a "log leg " mentality and needed help when I tried to lift it independently.... like getting dressed, getting in bed, or the car.
Babying it right now is fine.

I just had to remind myself often -
Tightness is a normal occurrence after this kind of major surgery. Your surgeon did major carpentry work and disturbed every millimeter of soft tissue in this area. You aren't tight because your muscle is underused and needs to be stretched and rehabbed. You're tight because your tissue is healing... If a long full step right now is causing pain and limping, don't take long full steps. Take smaller steps. Take a short walk several times a day, instead of longer walks. Use your cane. Use ice. Rest a lot.

This isn't the time to do anything to excess. Baby steps now, and lots of patience, pays off big time later. Recovering from self-induced tendinitis can end up taking weeks or months. Consider yourself as still recovering from surgery and structure your return to your life as a slow, gradual process where you introduce very small increments in activity, and then give yourself time to see how you react to it.
All temporary, and worth the patience. I am certainly glad I am able to get back to a full happy life.
thank you all
so much for your replies . so happy to hear your input and from a fellow double hippie- this has been a tough journey and yes tendinitis tar the IT band was starting to settle in and yesterday i took the day off went all the way back to basics and today thank goodness feel good . i am just going to slow down - i thought i was going slow but apparently not. thanks all!!
Good to hear. Slow and easy. Healing takes its own sweet time. In a few more months you be glad you did.
New shoes with good arch supports. Walking heel to toe and stand up straight ..all helps healing and it matters how good you practice your gait …
:xmas-wave-smiley-emoticon: Happy Two Month Anniversary!
How have those hips been doing since you last posted? Hopefully all is well. Next time you stop by, please leave an update. We’d love to read about your progress.
Until then, wishing you all the best and a happy holiday season!
@Grateful mo

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