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Hip replacement is in my future

Discussion in 'Hip Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by Chappyd, Dec 5, 2018.

  1. Chappyd

    Chappyd junior member
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    Glad I found this site to get some information about hip replacements

    About 6 weeks ago I was getting some of my motorcycles ready for the winter, running the gas out by draining the tanks and running them out. When I got off the last one I swung my leg over the bike to get off I think I must have ripped the last piece of cartilage out of my hip socket. I went to put my foot down and got a stabbing pain in my hip. After about 20 minutes I could start to put a little weight on it. Since that time it got to the point where I could walk ok, but it hurt all the time. Now it is definitely slowing me down. walking is just to get where I need to go. Went and visited my local orthopedic shop last Thursday. In the Xray it shows the ball on the femur resting directly on the hip bone. The doc looks at me and tells me that since I've made to 60 without any cardiac/diabetes/not on any meds, I gotta pretty good shot at making 85-90. He says but that hip isn't going that distance with you. Osteoarthritis and bone on bone.

    In about 4 weeks we have a family trip planned to Disney which of course involves a lot of walking. Talking with the PA at my visit he seemed to think after looking at the xray I have a few options- Lose some weight, definitely have about 20-25 pounds I don't need, do some physical therapy, get a cortisone shot, and when it gets bad enough, the operation.

    I'm going to go for the cortisone shot one more time since we are taking a vacation to Disney in 4 weeks that is going to involve lots of walking. We're timing the shot to make the most of the relief I get if any happens while we're away. I'm thinking that while the pain right now is not debilitating, it is constant and it definitely keeps me from being active. I hate sitting around, not a fan of TV, plus my dogs need to go for walks too.

    I've had problems off and on for about 6 years now. Back when it first started it was mostly when I sat a certain way. I did get a cortisone shot about 3 years ago, and most of the time since then it has been pretty good. No real pain issues, but lots of stiffness and lack of mobility but it didn't hurt and I could do anything I wanted, walking, jogging, riding dirt bikes. Walking 10 miles was not a problem.

    I'm kinda worried about the stabbing pain I had when I got off my bike. If that happens again, what if it doesn't go away? It was like an 8 or 9 on a scale of 10, and if it didn't go away I would be on crutches or a wheelchair. The xray this time definitely looked worse than the one I had around 2012

    I'm thinking I want to get this over with so around springtime I will be able to at least go out and walk. As I get older I really dislike the winter season, and in the summer if I'm not working I simply enjoy being outside moving.
     
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  2. Eman85

    Eman85 post-grad

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    Everyone's pain is different and so are their acceptable levels of pain. My throbbing pain started when I was a kid. it progressed to the stabbing pain after that. For some reason it wouldn't hurt bad enough to stop me from doing everything I wanted to but the ache afterwards was rough, hard to sleep. Always tough in the winter, one of the reasons I moved south years ago. I went 50 years or so with the pain and had 1 hip done this year. I timed it so I would be recovered by spring which worked out great. I never had any shots so I don't know how that works out.
    If you do have your hip replaced you will have no choice but to sit around for a while which is why winter works out good.
     
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  3. Layla

    Layla FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Hi, I'm sorry you're struggling with pain. It's awful and casts a pall over your life.

    If the trip is unavoidable, consider scheduling surgery for a few months from now, get the cortisone injection for the trip and hope it works. I've never experienced a cortisone injection but from my understanding, the result is unpredictable. I would hope for the best result for the trip and thereafter.

    If you're bone on bone, I know you realize weight loss won't change that. I tried PT, myself, in an effort to hold off on surgery and it didn't work for me. I experienced a stabbing pain on occasion also and it would normally have me off my feet for the remainder of the day. I'd take some Aleve and usually felt better the next day. Not good, but my normal achiness, without the stabbing pain. The pain is unpredictable also. My advice...don't put the surgery off. Get it done as soon as you're able. Lose the pain and uncertainty and get your life back. You come around from THR pretty quickly and you'll love the result.

    Here are some articles that may interest you as you contemplate surgery -

    http://bonesmart.org/forum/threads/choosing-a-surgeon-and-a-prosthesis.2491/
    http://bonesmart.org/forum/threads/...visions-how-long-will-my-new-joint-last.4491/
    http://bonesmart.org/forum/threads/pre-op-interviews-whats-involved.13327/
    http://bonesmart.org/forum/threads/recovery-aids-a-comprehensive-list-for-hospital-and-home.12499/

    I wish you the best moving forward. Stop back often, we'd love to support you along the way.
    @Chappyd
     
  4. SurreyGirl

    SurreyGirl post-grad

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    Hi there. I started to have problems at 55. Was told to lose weight. Did so and therefore delayed the op. The pain got to the stabby stage and was unbearable. Averaged 3 hours sleep a night and full time work was very hard.
    Now I have had the op it is still early days but that horrible pain has gone, I am back at work, very tired, but getting there.

    Please don’t leave it as long as I did! Maybe wait until you get back from Disneyland but once you get to that stabby type of pain that makes you want to leap out of your chair it is time.

    Good luck with your decision. There are some great people in here and lots of good advice from people who have been through it.
     
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  5. Jaycey

    Jaycey SUPER MODERATOR Moderator

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    Just a warning - the situation can go from where you are now to horrid literally overnight. Pre-op my LTHR my hip collapsed. I waited too long and also took the PT route. The joint just gave out. You are right - crutches and intense pain until you can get a THR.

    I understand you want to take that family vacation. But please don't be fooled into thinking the injection will correct anything. If you react well to the injection it may mask the pain for awhile to buy you some time. But too often patients assume no pain means everything is fixed. Baby that hip as much as you can. PT will do nothing for you at this stage and indeed it can add to the wear and tear.

    I hope you can get this hip replaced soon so that you can get on with living again.
     
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  6. Chappyd

    Chappyd junior member
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    Thought I would leave an update. First of all thanks to you folks who replied to my thread. It is much appreciated.

    So I got my cortisone shot on 12/20/18. We left for Disney on the 27th. By the late afternoon I was on the phone making an appointment to meet with the surgeon. While the pain was improved, the miles of walking through airports and at the park left me a little depressed. We were there 5 days, and while one day was really not too bad, I was constantly lagging behind and unable to keep up.

    Shortly after returning I had my physical with my primary Doc and I discussed the situation.He said on one hand it might make sense to wait a while so it would most likely be a once in a lifetime event. Then I told him about not being able to do the things I like to do, like long walks with the dog. He said, if it is impacting your life then maybe you should. A week later I met with the surgeon. I really liked him, lots of experience and a sense of humor while being very frank at the same time. At the end of talking with him, he said I could come in as often as I like to talk about the surgery and ask questions. He said as far as making the decision to go ahead only I could do that, and there was no clear answer but could coach me through the decision making process. He said that I most likely had seen the most benefit I would get from the shot by this point.

    After talking to my wife and my employer, I decided I wanted to do this and get it over with. All have been supportive. That was about 1 week ago. since that time I have been mostly feeling pretty good. Minimal pain, mostly after exercise or walking a lot a work. I started thinking am I doing the right thing? I have another appointment with the surgeon on the 30th, and my plan was to ask my questions, but essentially set the appointment for the surgery. So I'm thinking, second guessing myself- So I thought if I am going through with this I think I ought to be in worse shape than I am. So the last couple of days I decided to start taking walks and also yesterday and today rode my dirt bike on my backyard track. As I write this I am fresh off a half hour riding. I feel a little pain, but not bad at all.

    Then I think back to when it first flared up a few months ago and I couldn't put any weight on it. The next couple of months prior to the shot I could not have done what I did today- Walk a mile or so at lunch at work, and come home and ride my bike. I know the shot is temporary, but when it doesn't feel bad it's hard to remember what it was like prior to it.

    The surgery wouldn't be until April. This decision is a scary one for me, as I'm sure others can relate. I'm happy to have found this forum, and thanks for listening!

    Chappyd
     
  7. Wayfarer

    Wayfarer member

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    Chappy, I think you can see the writing on the wall. I had my surgery a week ago; still in discomfort and will be for a spell, but guess what? No hip pain; don't feel anything of pain where I use to feel it and what curbed an active life.

    My pain (steadily got worse) lasted over a year. I was "in line" for surgery for about six months. Not because there was a waiting line, but wanted the surgery when I thought it was most appropriate for me. So then I had six months to contemplate the inevitable. Thinking some days, oh, this isn't that bad, but only to have it get worse that same day; some days worse than others, but pretty much ALL days being bad. I probably got use to the pain to some extent, but that didn't help me, it just meant I was becoming less and less active. I was accommodating the pain by inactivity; not a good way to deal with it.

    Even weeks out, I was like, really? I really have to get my hip replaced? I'm really going to have something artificial in my body? This is something I want? "Yes" on all accounts. It's tough, you just gotta resign yourself to doing this; and resignation to something isn't necessarily a bad thing.
     
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  8. Eman85

    Eman85 post-grad

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    Few ways of looking at it. I waited, I had pains after walking and I had limited ROM but I guess I had become used to it after all of those years. When it really started to bother me I asked my GP and the one thing he said that made the most sense was I'm in as good of shape as I'll ever be. That did make sense as far as recovery and getting use out of a new hip. I hate to buy something I don't get value out of. My ROM on both of my hips has been bad since I was a kid. It progressively got worse to where the hip would lock, you could hear it pop when I forced it. I don't know if yours bothers you when you ride. I rode for many years and it hurt holding my legs apart straddling my bike. It got so it hurt on the riding mower and the tractor. After having 1 done I can use the mower and tractor with no problem. I still have my bikes but have no pressing urge to ride but I'm sure I could and it wouldn't hurt.
    As your Doc said it's up to you and you have to know you're ready.
     
  9. dapplega

    dapplega member

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    @Chappyd - you are not alone. Many here had second thoughts leading up their surgery. Am I bad enough? Should I be totally hobbled? Am I jumping the gun? All common when considering something that has no guarantee won't need to be done again... I was 52 and still going to the gym up to the day before the surgery. Nights were difficult and I was developing a limp. There is no conclusive evidence on how long the new materials will last but registry data is encouraging showing only about a 5% revision rate at 15 years for ceramic on XLPE (which along with Ceramic on Ceramic seem to be the most commonly used). For folks in excruciating pain it is an easy decision. For folks like you (me) hoping to strike the balance between quality of life and longevity it can be a difficult decision process. Trust you will be at peace with your decision...
     
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  10. Windsong

    Windsong junior member

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    Ahh yes, wanting to believe you can put off the inevitable because right now the pain is tolerable. You’ve already gotten a glimpse of how bad the pain can be and believe me you don’t want to wait until that pain is an 8 for 24 hours a day non-stop. I know it seems like you can put it off and and hope for the best but it truly shocked me at how quickly I went downhill.

    I had made the decision to have surgery at the end of 2017 but for job reasons wasn’t going to schedule it until April, 2018. A series of events out of my contol happened and the surgery eventually got scheduled for October 23. By June my limp was so bad it was affecting my sciatica creating more pain than I thought humanely possible. I started using a walker and by September I was in so much pain, I begged for an earlier surgery date with any available surgeon. Lucky for me on the list was an OS who had done a co-worker’s hip replacement and I was able to get a new date of October 1.

    It has been almost 4 months now and this surgery has been life-changing. I have my life back. This forum and website helped me understand the recovery process. We all had to go thru the process of making the decision but the more I read on BoneSmart, the better I felt about making the decision.
     
  11. Chappyd

    Chappyd junior member
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    I sold my street bike a few years ago. I got to the point where it was painful after a 1/2 hour-1 hour in the saddle. I can remember 1 time in particular when I was almost home and the pain was getting unbearable. Like you said eman85,

    - " I rode for many years and it hurt holding my legs apart straddling my bike. It got so it hurt on the riding mower and the tractor. After having 1 done I can use the mower and tractor with no problem."

    Now that I think of it, towards the end of last summer the mower pretty tough on me too. I would limp for a while afterwards. I rode only dirt bikes since I sold my last road bike. They are very narrow and don't force the legs apart. I too have had severely limited motion for as long as I can remember, on my right side anyhow..I think I have been compensating for a long time.

    Thanks to you all for sharing your stories, no doubt I'll be coming here more often.
     
  12. Mojo333

    Mojo333 FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    :wave:Good for you for getting this new hip show on the road.
    You will be so happy to get your life back.
    I was also bone on bone...but for both hips at the ripe old age of 52.
    Now with two new hips, I feel decades younger and have returned to riding ATV (wide) and a very labor intensive job.
    We will be here to cheer you on!
    Roll On April...:yahoo:
     
  13. Carriemay60

    Carriemay60 post-grad

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    @Chappyd I had a partial hip replacement almost 5 years ago due to a fall. I've had rheumatoid arthritis since my early 20's and after breaking my leg and hip found out I also have osteoarthritis. Considering my arthritis history I still don't really understand why they did a partial but it was urgent, while travelling and they had me full of morphine so I was not part of the conversation. Anyway, for 4 years I was getting cortisone shots in the hip, doing PT on and off and had lost all quality of life. When I finally got in to my surgeon of choice he insisted the shots be stopped immediately because they break down the muscle and are basically a bandaid. If you are bone on bone, there is no point using bandaids, you are only delaying the inevitable and as many say it only gets worse. I would guess that one in about 15 people on this forum at one time felt like a fraud because they were not in constant pain and/or could do some things without much pain. You also see a high ratio of people regretting they had waited so long. Some because they had simply gotten so much worse, the hip had collapsed or because after surgery they had discovered just how much they had been missing
    :flwrysmile:
     
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  14. lotusbuds

    lotusbuds member

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    @Chappyd I can totally relate to what you are saying and all of the above comments. I am scheduled for surgery March 01 and have a lot of fear and anxiety but also am so glad I finally made the decision to go ahead. My story started with a fall at work over hanging computer cords resulting in a torn meniscus. It took a year to heal although I could walk after a couple weeks. Just after it had completely healed (a year later) while on holidays I developed hip pain. Long story short I likely always had arthritis there but the limping and compensating aggravated the situation. Its now 2 1/2 years later. I had 2 cortisone shots (one worked for 5 weeks the other for one week) and this fall decided enough is enough. After weeks of agonizing pain I had 3 days of barely no pain and had my doubts again about surgery but I am looking ahead and know this is the right decision.
    I am so grateful to have found this forum once I made my decision and talked to a few friends who have had a hip replacements.
    The one thing I keep hearing over and over is
    "I should have done this much earlier" Why did I wait so long!"
    Good luck with your decision!
     
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  15. Eman85

    Eman85 post-grad

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    Everyone's situation and place in life is different. Everyone will tell you how great a THR is but do keep in mind it's a pretty major operation with a lengthy recovery. Work and the time off from it comes into play. Also what you do for work matters also. I worked mine out and had a short and long term disability policy and also planned on retiring so it worked out for me.
     
  16. Chappyd

    Chappyd junior member
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    Saw my surgeon today for the 2nd time. I really like him and feel good about this. Surgery is scheduled for April 15th. Today tried to walk at lunchtime, and it was uncomfortable/painful. It seems that any activity more than 10 minutes long produces enough pain/discomfort I need to stop. I was thinking the other night I have really put up with or compensated since 2013-2014. I remember having to give up road motorcycles because the pain in my right hip made it hard to ride for more than 20 min.

    As a bonus I get 6 weeks off of work. Since I left high school I've never had more than 3 weeks off, ever. 42 years straight in machine shops.
     
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  17. Eman85

    Eman85 post-grad

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    I would look at more than 6 weeks if I was you. Generally 12 weeks especially for any physical labor type job.
     
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  18. Mojo333

    Mojo333 FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Good to have a date for getting this hip fixed...so you can get on with life!
    Which hip is it @Chappyd ?
    We will add a date to your signature.
     
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  19. Chappyd

    Chappyd junior member
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    I don't run machines anymore. I'm the manager now. So my days are spent 50/50 at a desk and walking around. I wish I were closer to retirement. The shop is going to set me up so I can log into the system from home, of course that will be all desk work and if I feel up to it. My wife retired last summer so she is coming out of retirement to play nurse for me.
    The Dr. said I will be going home the same day, and that they make that decision prior to surgery based on general health being at least one of the factors. I'm sure there are others but I'll leave that up to him. I think that is a little scary, not knowing how I will be when I wake up. Most other folks stories I've read about online seems not too many go home the same day.
     
  20. Jaycey

    Jaycey SUPER MODERATOR Moderator

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    @Chappyd Please do not feel pressured to go home the day of the op. It is important to get your pain management cocktail balanced while you are in the hospital. This sometimes takes a day or 2.

    I agree with Eman85 - you will need more than 6 weeks off work. 10-12 weeks is recommended and then a phased return.
     
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