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[THR] Herts hippy recovery

SurreyGirl

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Wow! Just been catching up on your awesome progress.brilliant! My health club does Barre classes so might give it a go. Swimming and walking for me atm.
 
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HertsHippy

HertsHippy

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@Constanze Hi - I read your thread. Your recovery was very impressive! I am on a slower path but am still making good progress - climbed Scafell Pike, England's highest peak yesterday in 2 hours 10 minutes which is quite good (3.5 miles and almost 950 metre ascent on rough terrain). I leave marathon running to my wife and still struggle to run - my muscles are not quite strong enough. But I will be back to skiing next year. We used to ski mainly in France (Chamonix, 3 Valleys, and Val D'Isere) but have started to go to Austria where the hotels are more hospitable and are better if you don't ski from first to last lift.

We go to Welwyn Garden City a lot including to shop at the John Lewis store (10 minutes drive). Unfortunately they are shutting much of the very good sports centre at WGC (Gosling). St Albans is very nice with old buildings, shops, restaurants and 20 minutes to Central London on the train but it is not good for cycling - we have to take bikes in the car to cycle on tracks - the roads here are too narrow for me. The cycling in your region sounds great - I envy you!

The walk round London (the Capital Ring) goes near train and underground stations so you can split it as you wish - people travel to the start each day rather than stay in hotels. There are several long distance walks in the UK now with hotels stops - I would like to do the Coast to Coast walk which goes across North England - it is 190 tough miles so you need to be fit and have good equipment.

One other question: Is your other hip ok? I've been told if someone has arthritis in one hip, the other one will usually "follow". But this hasn't happened to me yet - my right hip is all right.
When I was x-rayed almost 4 years ago it showed FAI on my better hip with bone spurs but no bone degenration. I am hoping to avoid another THR in the near future but know it might happen. I get some clicking in the hip and occassionally get slight pain. I am hoping that exercise will stop the hip getting worse.

Good luck with the running and triathlons.
 

Mojo333

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It does sound like you are on top of the world!:yahoo:
So glad to hear how well you are doing!
Hope lefty hangs in there.
 
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HertsHippy

HertsHippy

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Six+ month update – climbing mountains but not back to normal yet

I thought I would provide an update now I am more than 6 months post-op – it is helpful for me to have a note of progress in the event I need hip 2 replaced. And it may be of vague interest to some others.

Climbing mountains – at 6 months I spent a few days walking in England’s Lake District. Walks included climbing Scafell Pike and Helvellyn (highest and third highest mountains in England). The hip coped very well with walks of up to 7 hours over some very steep and very uneven terrain (I had been training in months 4 and 5 with regular walks on falter terrain of 10 to 20 miles). I was not as fast as when I was younger but I was still quicker than most. It was good only having to stop to get my breath back rather than to have a rest for aching joints. The only minor issue was that I was a bit tentative stepping down with the operated leg not wanting to jar the hip. Getting back into the mountains this Spring was a pre-op goal which I am pleased to have achieved.

Not back to normal yet – while I have made reasonable progress, I feel I am still quite some way from being back to normal, although much better than I was 4 years ago when the OA really started to give me problems. While not fast, my progress has been steady with no problems (other than being a bit fed up about progress in the early months) and even at this stage I can regularly feel improvements. For example, around month 5 I could start to climb 2 stairs at a time with each leg (helpful for the hills). But I don’t think I had my first pain free day until about month six although for quite some time pains were only really level 1 aches and zaps. I still cannot run properly – my muscles just won’t let me. I cannot do some exercises yet; eg standing from sitting on the operated leg or sitting from standing balancing on the operated leg. The motion of the hip feels very good but the muscles around it need to get stronger. I suspect if I had done more work in the gym I might have progressed a bit faster – or if I had not waited for so long before having THR. 12 months does look like a realistic target for full recovery which I am more than happy with.

I do find it interesting to read other threads where people get back to normal in a couple of months or so. While each recovery is different and depends on so many factors, I wonder whether people have very different views of what returning to normal is. For me “normality” is returning to where I was pre-OA and that includes running and playing squash and tennis at a moderate level which is still quite some way off.
 

Klassy

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Thanks for this update @HertsHippy . It is fascinating. Your achievements so far are amazing. I liked your post earlier this month about having the highest artificial hip in England! But even so, there is progress still being made after 6 months. This is reassuring.

I have just been reading Melanie Reid’s memoir of her life with tetraplegia. She describes being encouraged when she was a year post accident by someone who was still seeing small improvements many years on. His view was that greatest gift for anyone recovering from injury is time. “We are quite unused to the time required to fix these incredible bodies of ours, more complex than a galaxy”. And he liked to imagine myriads of tiny medics working inside to repair us, while we look after the big stuff of eating right and exercise.
 

mollymum

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His view was that greatest gift for anyone recovering from injury is time. “We are quite unused to the time required to fix these incredible bodies of ours, more complex than a galaxy”. And he liked to imagine myriads of tiny medics working inside to repair us, while we look after the big stuff of eating right and exercise.
That is a beautiful analogy, thank you for posting it :yes: I haven't been up Helvellyn since 1995, but remember it as an amazing experience...........
 
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HertsHippy

HertsHippy

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@Klassy
His view was that greatest gift for anyone recovering from injury is time. “We are quite unused to the time required to fix these incredible bodies of ours, more complex than a galaxy”. And he liked to imagine myriads of tiny medics working inside to repair us, while we look after the big stuff of eating right and exercise.
That is a brilliant quote. I sometimes read Melanie Reid's Spinal column in the Saturday Times (which I get for the cryptic jumbo). Quite remarkable and makes me realise how lucky I have been.

I also read on another thread that a forum member's OS said that you can expect to be 50% healed after 3 months, 70% after 6 months and 90% after a year. That seems realistic to me. In month 7 I have continued to feel improvements and am becoming stronger and more flexible. However I still feel there is quite a lot more improvement to come although there are very few things I cannot now do - other than those activities which involve a lot of running. At 80% healed I am now a lot better than I was several years pre-op and I suspect I am now in much better physical shape than many people my age which puts me in a pretty good place.
 

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