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Fractured Neck of Femur/Pinning Hip Preservation Surgery

Stephen1989

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Hello everybody,
I hope you’re all doing well.
I had hip preservation surgery on my left hip a few days ago on the 6th of April 2021.
I had a stress fracture in September 2020, while I was 31. They think it was from playing too much tennis, as I play quite a lot.
Unfortunately it went undiagnosed for 6 months as my doctors and physios all refused to give me a scan or X-ray despite all the agony I was in. I finally got one on the 11th of March, which revealed the fracture and had the op 3 1/2 weeks later.
I’ve read lots of the very helpful threads on here and the hip repair surgeries certainly seem to be in the minority.
I was just wondering if anybody knows the success rates for this procedure and how long their recovery took.
I’m on 6 weeks toe-touch and then hopefully full weight bearing.
Also, does anybody know about returning to high-impact sports, such as tennis, which I am very keen to do and the timescales involved?
Many thanks for reading and I look forward to reading any responses.
All the best
Stephen :)
 

Mojo333

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Hi @Stephen1989 and :welome:to Bonesmart.
I'm sorry your diagnosis took so long but I hope you are doing well.

I'm sure the toe touch weight bearing is challenging:umm:but do be diligent so that things can mend.
Not sure when you have your post op appointment but I would definitely ask him about your aspirations to resume playing tennis as he knows the status of your hip up close and personal.
High impact sports can be rough on good hips, so I really don't know what the answers will be.

Here's the link to a list of threads by the people who have had hip pinning.
https://bonesmart.org/forum/view/hip-surgery-recovery-area.5/?prefix_id=148

Maybe you can glean some good advice and info from checking it out.

Here is a short reading list about recovering from hip pinning.

Pain management and the pain chart
The Myth of Addiction
Pain and swelling control: elevation can help
Using Ice

Recovery Aids
How to Use Crutches
Warning about Armpit Crutches
Recliners

Blood Thinners
Constipation and Stool Softeners

Energy Drain
Sleep Deprivation
Post Op Blues
Accepting Help
 
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Stephen1989

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Hi Mojo,
Many thanks for your reply and for all of the helpful links.
My post-op appointment is 6 weeks away so yes I’ll be sure to ask my surgeons then. They said if the hip preservation wasn’t successful then I would have to have a hip replacement anyway, but fingers crossed this one will be ok!
I’ll get reading and if anyone else has any similar experiences then I’d be very interested to hear.
Kind regards
Stephen :)
 

Mojo333

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I do hope your pain is well managed and do let us know how you are getting on.
Documenting our recoveries can be very helpful for future members too.
Eat well, and keep that immune system cranking.
I'm sure this boring part of recovery will be a test for your patience, so hang in there, friend.:bored:
I am a grateful double hippy that is back to a healthy active life.:) :-) (:
 

Jaycey

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@Stephen1989 Welcome! Please remember that since you are 6 weeks toe-touch your real rehab will not start until you are fully weight bearing. Patience will be key to your recovery.

Discuss returning to tennis with your surgeon. I assume he/she knows you are very active?
 
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Stephen1989

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I do hope your pain is well managed and do let us know how you are getting on.
Documenting our recoveries can be very helpful for future members too.
Eat well, and keep that immune system cranking.
I'm sure this boring part of recovery will be a test for your patience, so hang in there, friend.:bored:
I am a grateful double hippy that is back to a healthy active life.:) :-) (:
Many thanks Mojo. Pleased to hear that the surgeries worked for you. :)
 
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Stephen1989

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@Stephen1989 Welcome! Please remember that since you are 6 weeks toe-touch your real rehab will not start until you are fully weight bearing. Patience will be key to your recovery.

Discuss returning to tennis with your surgeon. I assume he/she knows you are very active?
Hi Jaycey,
Many thanks for your message.
Yes my surgeons, (both hes) know about my tennis and said that having the preservation as opposed to the replacement would give me better prospects. I know, patience will be the key now and I won’t want to attempt to get back out on court until I am completely ready. Just interested to hear how other people have managed. :)
 

Layla

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Welcome to BoneSmart, Stephen, and thanks for joining us! I’m sorry to read of your misfortune and the discomfort you suffered while waiting for a diagnosis. I hope the hip preservation works. We’re here for support no matter what. I’ll be following your progress.
I hope you have a nice weekend! :)
@Stephen1989
 
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Stephen1989

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Welcome to BoneSmart, Stephen, and thanks for joining us! I’m sorry to read of your misfortune and the discomfort you suffered while waiting for a diagnosis. I hope the hip preservation works. We’re here for support no matter what. I’ll be following your progress.
I hope you have a nice weekend! :)
@Stephen1989
Hi Layla,
Many thanks for your message. I’ll try and keep the thread updated as I found it really helpful reading other people’s progress.
Enjoy your weekend too thank you :)
 
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Stephen1989

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Hello Everyone, :)

I hope everybody is keeping well.

Just to update, the dressings were removed and the wounds look fine. I’m still not in any real pain, nearly 4 weeks post-procedure, just occasionally get the odd slight ache around the lower back and lower and upper leg. I hope these are normal and are nothing to worry about? Presumably they’ll get better over time.

I’ve been doing the light exercises 4 times a day as advised with no problems and have a physio appointment in 2 weeks for more exercises.

My post-op is 2 1/2 weeks away. I’ve got to be honest, I have really struggled with my mental health over these past 4 weeks. Feeling very down and just so frustrated about not being able to go out and do things and see people. But I’m trying to tell myself that it’s just a few weeks’ frustration for hopefully a lifetime without pain. But I do really empathise with everyone who is going through similar experiences. Time does go by I know, just seems to be quite slow sometimes.

I’m staying with my family whilst I am still toe-touch but I desperately need to get back to my flat, 60 miles away. I also need to return to my office job asap. I was just interested to hear if people think this will be possible shortly after my post-op? Work need me back by 1st June and the post-op is on 20th May. I’m hoping I’ll be able to put pressure on my leg then and really hope I’ll be able to cope with the short walk to work and living by myself back at my flat. Is this realistic? I really don’t think I could cope any longer with being away from home and not being able to go out, I hope my surgeons will allow me to resume my life?

Apologies for the long message. Thank you very much if you’ve made it this far and I look forward to receiving any responses.

Take care everybody

Best Wishes

Stephen :)
 

djklaugh

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@Stephen1989 The slight aches you are experiencing sound to me like very normal sensations following hip surgery. Healing from an injury and surgery such as yours is major and the muscles and tendons around the hip get stretched and traumatized. So not only does the bone need to heal, the incision need to heal, but those muscles and tendons also need to relax and heal.

Whether you can return to your job by June 1 is a question your surgeon needs to answer. Much depends on how well the internal healing is going and how strong your surgeon thinks the hip has become. It also may depend on how physically demanding your job is - how much walking you'd need to do to get everything done at work. Can you tolerate sitting at a desk for extended periods of time? Have you talked to your HR department and/or boss about a phased return to work?

I can understand how frustrating this must be for you! Unfortunately there is no way to speed up healing. Even is the fracture had been discovered more quickly ( and it is appalling that doctor and PT refused to get an x-ray or scan early on!) you'd still need 8-12 weeks or longer to fully heal.

You probably could do just fine back at your flat on your own. Though would you have any help with getting in groceries, getting to appointments, etc? Since you are still on just toe-touch walking those things could be difficult.

No need to apologize for lengthy messages :) It helps us answer your concerns when we have lots of information to work with.
 
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Stephen1989

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Thank you very much djklaugh for your very helpful reply.
That’s good to hear regarding the pain. I’ve had a few discussions with my boss about it and she said that they’ll be flexible with my shifts so that I can start off doing half-days and I can have a few extra 5 minute breaks to do my exercises and stretch my legs. I live a 5 minute walk away and I’ll be at my desk virtually the whole time so it won’t be too physically demanding. I’m just wondering how long it will take to build up the strength in my leg to walk unaided? Will I be able to walk with just one crutch so that I can still cook and stuff?

Thank you for your sympathy. I could get my shopping and medication delivered and I have a bus stop to the hospital 5 minutes away. So I think I could manage being on my own. I’ll just need one hand free to carry things and cook/clean etc. Is it realistic to think I could do that shortly after the post-op, if all is healing well?

Many thanks again for your help

Stephen :)
 

Celle

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Work need me back by 1st June and the post-op is on 20th May. I’m hoping I’ll be able to put pressure on my leg then and really hope I’ll be able to cope with the short walk to work and living by myself back at my flat. Is this realistic? I really don’t think I could cope any longer with being away from home and not being able to go out, I hope my surgeons will allow me to resume my life?
June 1 is really early to be going back to work. It won't even be a month sine your surgery.
We usually recommend taking 10-12 weeks off work and then doing a Phased return to work

Your surgeon knows that it takes time for bones to heal and that going back to work too soon could compromise that healing. It's better to take the time your hip needs to heal than to go back to work too soon, and end up with a less-than-optimum result.

I know it's hard, but spending enough time away from work now is really a wise investment.

I’ve had a few discussions with my boss about it and she said that they’ll be flexible with my shifts so that I can start off doing half-days and I can have a few extra 5 minute breaks to do my exercises and stretch my legs. I live a 5 minute walk away and I’ll be at my desk virtually the whole time so it won’t be too physically demanding.
If you're going to walk to and from work, as well as the exercise you get during work, you won't need to do any additional exercising.

People often think that doing a desk job will be easy, but sitting at a desk with your foot on the floor can lead to an increase in swelling. In addition, you'll need to get up and walked for 5 minutes or so every hour, so you don't get too stiff.
 
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Stephen1989

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Thanks very much for your very helpful reply Celle.

June 1st will work out just under 2 months from when I had the surgery. I get what you’re saying about doing an office job not being easy to cope with, but my life at the moment is basically sitting on a chair all day watching tv or using my tablet and I don’t have any problems doing that. So hopefully I’d be ok, but yes I’ll see what my surgeon says and it’s helpful to know that I wouldn’t need additional exercising other than that.

Any thoughts on whether I’ll be able to get by with one crutch and cook and clean and live by myself?

Thank you again

Best Wishes

Stephen :)
 

djklaugh

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@Stephen1989 I wish I could answer your question with a definite answer. However whether you can move to one crutch or need to stay with 2 is something your surgeon is going to have to determine.

At your appointment in June an x-ray or scan will be done to see if the fracture has healed as was hoped. IF there has been good bone growth and looks to be healing very well then it is indeed possible that you be able to go to just one crutch.

If however the bone is not healing as well as your surgeon hoped then, alas you'll probably have to stay on 2 crutches for a longer period of time.

I'm not a medical person but I'd guess, from your perspective, the worst case scenario would be that bone was not healing well at all - meaning hip preservation attempt has not worked and you do need a hip replacement. In that case you'd need another surgery and another 8-12 weeks of healing and then Physical Therapy (maybe) to get all the muscles and tendons back to full functioning. Man made hips do not themselves really need much PT - walking is the best exercise for that particular situation. But some times folks do need PT to help strengthen and improve flexibility of muscles.

That being said we here at BoneSmart have seen many younger folks getting hip replacements and returning to physically demanding work and activities. So even if you did need a hip replacement - soon or later on - you might still be able to get back to playing tennis :)

I was twice your age when I had my hips replaced and was not athletically inclined at all. When discharged from my surgeon's active caseload he told me the only thing I could never do was bungy cord jumping.

I know it's hard ... but patience for now is your best option.
 
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Stephen1989

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Thank you very much for your great message again djklaugh.

All of the information is very helpful and yes you’re right, patience is the key.
Only 17 days to go now (not that I’m counting!) and I’ve already lasted more than that, so I know it’ll be manageable.

I’m pleased to hear that your surgeon was happy and I hope that mine will be too.

I’ll update once I’ve seen the physio and surgeon again.

Many thanks again for your helpful advice.

Take care

Stephen :)
 

Divipops

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Hi Stephen like you I had a nasty fall in September and broke my hip, I had a screw and plate inserted and was told because the break was on the ball of the hip if it did not hold I would have to have a hip replacement. I was back at hospital last week for a scan and they have said it looks as if it is healing fine and now they are referring me for physio. I had to go for a bone scan and have been diagnosed with osteoporosis so I have been put on medication for that. I am usually so active playing badminton, swimming, fell walking, working part time as a welfare assistant in a primary school and looking after my grandson whilst my daughter goes to work, then this happened and put a stop to my gallop. I am seven months down the line and still need to use a stick when I am outside, I can't wait to be able to walk unaided. I am a lot older than you. Hope you recover well and get back to your tennis, take care
 
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Stephen1989

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Hi Divipops,
Thanks very much for your message and good wishes.
I am sorry to hear about your fall and the osteoporosis and I empathise with your desperation to get back on your feet - literally!
I’m pleased to hear that your bone is healing well though and I wish you all the best of luck with resuming your badminton and other activities.
Only 2 weeks until my post-op now so I’ll let you know how I get on.
Take care
Stephen :)
 

Divipops

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Hi Stephen

Hope you are well and recovering. It is the part of restricting mobility that I am finding hard to cope with, I will think I will do such a thing today start it then realise I am not able to do it so frustrating. All that I keep getting told is you have got to be patient , think my patience is starting to run out now after nearly 8 months. Never mind chin up smile on your face take care.

Divipops
 
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Stephen1989

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Hi Divipops,

I really empathise with you over how frustrating the lack of mobility is. I would love to just be able to go out for a walk, or even just shopping! I think it’s the uncertainty which is one of the worst aspects to it. The not knowing when/if you’ll be able to do certain things again. Still, as you said, I’m trying to stay positive and in my case it’s only another 11 days after this until my post-op. I’m going to insist that I’m going to back to my flat after this though and then work on June 1st. My mental health just can’t cope with it any longer and I’ll go back to just using my walking stick instead of the 2 crutches, so that I can get around ok.

I know it’s different for you, but in my case, after the worst of the pain had subsided after a week or 2 following the injury, I began to tolerate the pain and used to go out for quite long walks, with my walking stick. It was only since they finally did an x-ray and discovered the break 6 months later, when they actually told me that I couldn’t go out at all. And it was definitely much easier to cope with, still being able to go for walks and shopping, albeit with a bit of pain. As opposed to now, where the pain has gone, but I can’t go out at all or even put any pressure on my left leg. So I almost wish they hadn’t discovered the fracture and I could have just carried on the way I was.

Surely I can’t do too much damage if I do go back in 2 weeks to just using a walking stick and going for short walks and doing an office job? I’ll take my chances anyway, it’s about quality of life and this certainly isn’t it.

It’s all well and good them telling you to be patient, but have they given you any idea of timescales?

How far can you walk and what can you do at the moment and what does it stop you from doing? Are you in pain and do you know the risks if you did try and rush things?

Take care of yourself and I understand what you’re going through. Hopefully it gets better each day.

Best Wishes

Stephen :)
 

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