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Discussion in 'Hip Replacement Recovery Area' started by Going4fun, Sep 11, 2018.
Thanks @Debru4. Totally helps to hear that ... even though I sometimes say that ... to other people!
Oh, isn't that the truth! Far easier to say it to others, than to remember it ourselves;) I guess that's what we have each other for.
Oh, I so agree with you, @Debru4! I was one of the lucky ones who had very little pain early on in recovery, and good mobility. But I am struggling right now, with aching in my operated thigh and the inability to walk longer distances without a lot of discomfort. I am sure I am overdoing things, and periodically I take a full "rest day" where I do nothing but sit in a broken recliner and read and feel quite mutinous. I am cross because it's not that I want to get out there and run a marathon or anything, I'd just like to be able to easily and comfortably walk more than a few blocks without discomfort. Too often I find myself tightening my core muscles and really "forcing" myself not to limp. Things aren't helped by the fact that my other hip periodically whines and aches as well. Truly, although I hate to acknowledge it, my body really is "the boss of me". Two years sounds so long to wait, and knowing I've got another hip yet to be fixed makes me feel really depressed sometimes. But, onwards--whining about things isn't going to make it better so I'm off to the gym today for a slow and fairly brief workout.
I will be interested to hear what your doctor says on March 12. My hope is that you'll get a good check up and that despite ongoing issues, you'll hear that you're on target for full recovery. Sure, I know you'd like to get back to being a full dancin' fool, but that will come, I'm sure. Maybe a referral to PT which involves gentle stretching and massage would be helpful--in your situation, I'd be willing to try different things to see what works. Anyway, we're all on this slog together so hang in there, and have a good "hump day" today.
Hello there fellow dancer @Going4fun . I haven't been on the board too much recently, but am trying to catch up a bit, and will post an update on my own thread soon. I was travelling (train), then travelling again (plane) , and getting on with various creative projects. Altogether things are going pretty well for me, although two days ago I was limping--my left un-operated hip was making its irritable self known to me in no uncertain terms (swing dancing two or three days before that), and I was calculating how long I had before next op, when I will be joining the bilateral club. However today it feels much better. Will expand on that on my own thread.
How are you doing?
Great to see you hear again @An54. I love hearing about your travels and activities. I'm coming out of a bit of a funk ... over the seemingly slow pace of my recovery ... thigh on operated side seems to get sore easily ... for a while I was having tingling in my knees when I moved in certain ways ... My surgeon's nurse wanted me to go to a physical medicine doctor to get some back x-rays. I definitely have a week back ... she wondered if back issues were interfering with my recovery.
Had back X-rays yesterday and met with physical medicine doctor ... he saw some issues with my back ... turns out I have an "extra" vertebra in my lower back that causes some compression ... Not horrible in his view ... He recommended physical therapy for back ... he did check for hip issues ... pushing against my leg and knee in various positions and asking me to push back ... and he said the hip seems extremely strong. So good news there.
Just in the past week, it seems that my outside thight and hip area ... are coming alive in a way they haven't before. I could do a side-lying leg lift without the knee feeling pain. My surgeon operated from the side (anterolateral) ... and maybe the nerves there are starting to recover ... I see my surgeon Tuesday for six-month checkup.
The good news is that something has clicked and I'm ready to take the hip out for a dancing spin ... probably next weekend. If there was a dance last night, I would have gone ... I realize I'll probably have to ice afterwards ... but it occurs to me that icing is no disaster ... Definitely have been frustrated ... and a bit insane moving between ... "this is so slow--something is wrong!" ... to ... "I'm getting better each month. Let the recovery keep going. So what if it's slower than I wanted?"
I'll post a six-month update after visiting the surgeon on Tuesday.
I'm just reading through whole thread from page one. Interesting! Plus good overview of progress made.
Thanks for that reminder @An54. And thanks for reading through the thread, so thoughtful. I need to read through the thread myself ... may just print it out and do that to see the progress ... That's the great thing about a journal like this ... since it's written over time, faulty memory doesn't get in the way ... BTW: just tonight, I put on 30 minutes of good music and danced without taking a break ...... I got tired ... But the hip was fine ... just the tiniest soreness at one point ... It's funny ... just that amount of dancing presurgery would have me popping some Alleve and hobbling for the rest of the night ...
Can I coax you to share about some more details of your amazing trips ... in your own thread?! You tell stories so well. And ... are you in "forgotten hip" land ... that place where you really don't need to think about the hip. Actually, I can see that day coming for me ... probably 6 months off ... or a year off ... But I can imagine that day coming.
Wow, @Going4fun, do you really think we'll all get to a place where we don't think about anything hip related? The fact that you can imagine that is pretty great. Glad to read you did some dancing the other night, 30 minutes with no stopping and no pain--fabulous! Hope you're enjoying a wonderful weekend.
@Barbaraj, I think most of us will get there. Just in recent days, I've had to remind myself that pre-surgery, I was highly conscious about the hip ... before activity (when I would anticipate pain and try to ignore it) and afterwards (when I felt that pain). And there was tightness and decreasing flexibility all the time ... I think I have moments now when I feel a little ache and actually I think something like "my leg" is tight ... but that leg is MY leg ... I've almost integrated the device as if it's a natural part of me.
I imagine (and hope) that one, our hips will continue to improve ... a lot! ... and that our brains will begin to relax and ignore some of the glitches ... because our nervous systems will be satisfied that the glitch isn't an emergency ... I'm thinking perhaps of the way my brain ignores car alarms going off on my city block in the middle of the night? ...
We'll have to trade notes on PT ... I'm pretty sure I'll check out PT in the next few months. I have found some sharp PT folks (from online reading) that I'm willing to try out, people that won't just google "hip replacement" and assign all the standard exercises ...
Much of the time I am able to "forget" I had my hip replaced--my surgery was last August, 2018, but I haven't yet had an entire day when it didn't cross my mind at least once, often in relation to reminding myself not to climb stepstools or explaining away a bit of pain.
I had to laugh at myself---a few days ago I had some stiffness and tenderness. Like @Going4fun, I wondered what I might have done to my leg or back. My hip didn't enter my mind at first. Then I reached down to massage my leg a bit, and touched the numb area. For a second, my heart skipped a beat and I thought, "What is going on here?". Why is my leg numb. Horrible worries crossed my mind. A second later it all came back--it was a leftover from my replacement! Whew!!
I have a feeling my numbness will be with me awhile, so perhaps I'll always have a bit of a reminder. But I do believe that once the debilitating pain shifts to annoying, uncomfortable moments, it is easier for us to lose track of the fact we actually had a whole hip (or two) replaced.
Awesome!! That has to be so encouraging. At six months post op there is still healing going on.
Just think how great you'll be feeling by the time your one year anniversary rolls around.
Best wishes for a great week!
@Going4fun , I will start writing again on my thread soon. In fact I have such a compulsion to write that I have to be careful how I direct it. I wrote a short story once--How I Killed My Pen Pal--which was tongue-in-cheek, but still had an element of truth to it. So I try to direct the writing impulse down the right channels, mostly on a small online writing group I started some years ago. We are just a handful of members. (One in Ireland, two in England, a couple of newbies and myself in Canada) I try not to babble or get carried away too much here on Bonesmart because, as they say, I have learned my lesson. Surgery patients are sensitive, as I'm sure you will agree.
I've been under the weather with a cold, but will perk up soon. best wishes
Hi @An54 - I might be interested in joining your group if you will have me! Also the online course you mentioned looked interesting.. @Going4fun sorry to hijack your thread!
Ah, @Going4fun and @Debru4, you guys give me hope that maybe, just maybe, there will come a time when I am not constantly aware of my lower body and its various aches and pains. It is true that I don't really think about my replaced hip, or only by inference in that I am aware of my inner thigh ache and stiffness. But until I get a second hip done I am not sure I will lose this daily body awareness. There is a more or less constant back stiffness and aching, both on the right and left side, although admittedly with the unoperated left side I am more aware of hip ache than my leg, with pain around the hip itself and not so much my leg. And I have some arthritis in my back which I am sure is causing me problems. I still have residual numbness on my operated leg, but I seldom think about that unless I touch my upper thigh near the scar or I or someone else grazes my thigh when it can feel a bit weird. But numbness I can handle going forward. it's the stiffness and ache that are so wearying. Argh...
Will be interested in hearing about your PT experiences, @Going4fun. I realize many people have not found it beneficial but my experiences have always been positive, before and after surgery. In part I attribute my relative strength before surgery to a daily routine of PT exercises that I did leading up to the big day. I have had different therapists, although all at the same clinic, but I've never felt like anyone has pushed me too hard or has been insensitive to how I'm feeling as I've tried to do what they've asked. Occasionally if I can't do something and let them know, they've immediately backed off. They seem to want to work with me patiently with a goal to helping me reach my goals. As with anything in life, one has to be politely assertive but overall I do think PT can be a positive step for assisting patients to regain strength and flexibility. Starting PT too early is, I agree, a foolish thing but once you are ready you might be pleasantly surprised, or at least that's my hope for you.
@SurreyGirl I'm happy to see you reaching out to @An54 ... Small world: I also write .. and I teach writing for a living. Just finished grading two sections of my first-year, college-writing class that I teach. (Will take a break before grading the next two sections.) So I am happy to encourage people to write and engage in writing groups!
I met one of my best friends in a writing group. And I've taken online writing classes (for fiction) that have been amazingly helpful.
Reading the recent posts on this thread, it's clear that people have varying experiences with PT/exercise, depending on the therapist. And only if the person is pretty clear, and assertive will they get the desired outcome, which often is hard when dealing with experts in their field.
One thing I have noticed, (being a very active person who isn't that into structured exercise) is how difficult recovery seems to be for those who are used to going to the gym/exercising regularly. 3 of my 4 kids really view their running, gym time as necessary for their mental health, as well as physical, and I think that is a big part of things for many people. And legitimately so.
I can only imagine how frustrating it must be for folks to find the healthy balance/recipe for exercise that doesn't risk damage while still fulfilling this need.
Sound like you living it up..!
And you JonnyNight? Are you living it up in Puerto Rico, or still easing back into things? I know you said you were a golfer---how long until that is safe after your surgery?
Like Going4fun points, out, getting back into the things we enjoy is so important, but also a challenge to figure out the pacing
@Debru4, great observation ... Yes, I am assuming my recovery has been affected by my high, high hopes to return to dancing and running .... Walking without pain was merely the first goal .... And to have thought about so surgery for so long ... and have to decrease my exercise ... I think I was hoping I'd be back out exercising after the surgery ... well yes, I'll get there, I think ... but on a much slower path.
You're right about exercising ... so many folks, me included, do it for the mental health ... exercise forces me to put the rest of life in perspective ... nothing is so important that I can't take time to exercise ... that thinking definitely helps me remain calm ... also the wonderful feeling of my body after it's been exerting itself ... and the wonderful feeling in my brain ...
Kudos to you---"Go slow to go fast"! (Hopefully you won't drive yourself crazy in the process!)