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THR Now my hip has given out

Mollymax

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Hi all. Well I have moved from the knee side to hip side. Sorry for this being a long post but it's taken me a while to brave coming back on. Now 18 months and 12 months after my knee replacements I am in great pain with my hip. I had what I thought was a pulled muscle in my groin. The pain was severe and walking up a hill agony. In July I went to doctor who, after examination, sent me for xrays. Two weeks later got called in for results - severe arthritis in left hip and minimal in right hip. To say I am gutted is an understatement. He advised I get physio and sent off a referral. However before that appointment came through we moved house so just 2 weeks ago I went to my new doctor. After examination he has referred me to physio but fears my hip is too far gone. He suggested injections but I said no because of my fear of needles. He then said pysio may refer me to orthopedic surgeon. Being in a new town, new doctors and new hospital is daunting.
Over the last couple of weeks the hip has got worse. At least I think it's the hip. The pain starts in the groin area, moves round to the bum. It also goes down the inside of my thigh down to my knee and I worry its my new knee causing the pain. Walking (which is why I was desperate to get knees done as I am a long distance walker) is proving hard. After two miles pain kicks in. By 4 miles it's agony. Today by 5 miles I was crying. When I got home after 6.5 miles I could barely lift my leg. Also getting in to my car is hard. Being in UK it's right hand drive and I have to put left leg in first. Its hard. My left leg just won't lift to get in. I have to help it by lifting it up. A huge part of me still wants to think it's muscular. Is this pain I am getting really arthritis. I cried so hard today thinking I got through the fear of two knee operations which for me wasn't easy, just for my hip to give out. Today I am so down. How can this have happened. Is doctor right when he said 20 years of running marathons has caused this.
Sorry folks for this long post. I am so unhappy. It certainly looks like in 2020 I may be looking at hip replacement. Thanks for reading.
 

BruceH

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Hi Mollymax,

It sounds like you already have the proof it's your hip from the xray. I understand the unpleasantness of not being able to walk more than a few miles without enduring pain after.

Steroid injection only helped me for a few days, it wasn't worth it in my case and prolonged my wait for surgery. I'm looking forward to a new hip, it's just part of what I have to do to feel better and become active again.

I'm sorry to hear of your hip troubles, to me it sounds like you know the answer. Good luck in your doctors visits.

Bruce
 

Eman85

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Can't say why your hip wore out, but they do seem to do that with a lot of use over periods of time. Of course the good news is we can get them replaced. People long for the old days but I'm pretty satisfied where we're at now in medicine considering where I'm at in age. I was thrilled with my new left hip as I was able to go walking again. Unfortunately it led to the quicker demise of my right which had to be replaced. It's no fun but it could be much worse as we know.
 

CricketHip

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Hi Mollymax. Gosh, that is tough..I think it's our one of our worst fears, that we will have other joints "go." From what I've heard from others, the hip seems to be easier to recover from. I've only had my hips replaced, and I think of my recoveries as wonderful miracles and I hope it will feel like that for you, too. Well, I wish this for you, too!
We have a member who has had both knees and hips replaced - recently a hip. @leejaa
I'm sure there are many others but leejaa came to mind and maybe you could visit her thread for starters?

I never ran marathons but ran 5 and 10 k's and taught aerobics for a lot years. It crossed my mind many times if I did some of the damage to myself? But it is what it is. I loved every minute of my fitness years..loved them and now I love my bionic joints!

Welcome to the "hip side" :flwrysmile:
 

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@Mollymax I'm sorry you're going through this. The symptoms you describe sound very much like what I have experienced with first my right hip (THR 2014) and now my left (THR next month). I too am an avid walker/hiker and former runner, and I can tell you that my first hip replacement recovery was much easier than I thought it would be and I was back to the fitness level that I had enjoyed pre-THR within 5 months of surgery. I hope the doctor hasn't caused you to regret your marathon years, I'm sure they brought you much joy and sense of accomplishment. Best of luck - you will be fine!
 
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Mollymax

Mollymax

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Thanks folks. I loved my running years. It's so hard knowing those days are behind me. I will be 66 years old in 5 weeks and I get depressed due to age and all those aches. I will be the bionic woman soon if i need hips replaced. It just doesn't seem fair after getting my new knees i am no better off. I actually feel this hip pain is worse than the knees ever were. The knees were painful but I still managed to run and walk up to marathon distances. I can't do that with the hip. Its much more painful. Of course I can't run now due to my knees but I really thought I would get back to marathon walking distance. I have heard that hip replacement is c easier than the knees. Hope this is right. At the moment I don't know if I will be offered a new hip. Still waiting for my appointment.
 

Going4fun

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Well ... a different perspective here ... I don't think you need to assume your running days are behind you. There are an increasing number of hip surgeons who do not recommend against patients running after surgery. Apparently the evidence for not running was always iffy. It was more intuition on the part of surgeons to ban patients from running.

But in recent years, more and more surgeons are fine with patients running, jumping and whatever. I had the surgery specifically so that I could run and dance again ... without pain. I could walk (sorta like you) up to a few miles without pain ... but exercising brought on pain. I found some surgeons who understood I wanted to exercise again--aggressively! And I wanted people at highly regarded practices who were up on research. And ... it turned out to be surprisingly easy to find surgeons fine with exercise after surgery. The biggest obstacle is that in my view surgeons don't like to announce loudly on their websites, "you can run marathons again after surgery." But ... read some of their patient stories (on the surgeon sites or online reviews) and you'll see stories of patients running after surgery without objection from their surgeons! I think I get it: surgeons are cautious and they don't want to go around over-promise.

Anyway, it's been a journey of ups and downs, but I'm running and dancing again. My surgeon placed zero restrictions on activity after the surgery. And he's a cautious guy who draws heavily on research and lectures around the country and keeps current with journals and is part of a major practice.

Oh ... and it's my understanding that surgeons are not clear at all in declaring that marathon running "causes" arthritis. I wonder if your doctor was speaking more casually as if to say "those hips are worn out."

There are lots of studies out there ... and there is no clear finding, to my understanding, that activity causes hip arthritis. A bigger predictor is apparently weight.

So yes, feel the sadness over possible surgery, but hold off on the sadness about the end of your running days. Consult with multiple surgeons, find some that attract athletic patients and tell them of your goals. You sound pretty determined to me.

Good luck.
 

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Hi Molly, I'm so sorry to read that your hip now needs replacing. That's bad luck. :console2:

Since you have X-Ray proof of arthritis, you do need to get that hip replaced.

If you give her your new zip code, and tag her, including how far you're willing to travel, Jamie may be able to suggest a surgeon you could contact.

You can do this - you've done the harder joint replacements and recovery from a THR is said to be easier than from a TKR: TKR or THR: which is more difficult surgery for recovery?

It would be a good idea, for the sake of your comfort, if you cut back on walking - there's no point in hurting yourself.
 
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leejaa

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@Mollymax. I had both my knees done in 2013 and thought I was done. I had great recoveries and life was good but it was not to be. In 2016 it started with groin pain radiating to back and down leg. After seeing chiropractor who thought it was SI joint, pain management doctor who gave me 2 injections in my spine with no relief and then the PA at my PC sent me for PT including water therapy. I spent many weeks and dollars going to PT with no resolution. Back to my PC who examined me and said hip and ordered an MRI.

You can follow the rest, back to OS and surgery. The hip pain for me was also worse than the knees and more limiting in what I could do. I could not find a comfortable spot upright or sitting. Had my left hip replaced and again thought I was done. Then this spring my right hip started, same thing with the groin and radiating down to my butt and down the leg to the knee and even below the knee to the ankle. Scary considering I have the knees replaced. This time I quickly went to the PC and OS within a week. Yes, needed another replacement. I am lower extremity fully bionic. I will say I was scared with this last hip more than with the others - I had good recoveries and kept thinking I was going to run out of luck. I was angry and frustrated that my other hip needed replacing just when life was getting back to normal again especially as I had retired in 2017 after the hip replacement.

I am not a proponent for PT when your hip has major arthritis - for me it increased the pain. I also had a hip injection since my OS had to prove to insurance that we did conservative treatment. This decreased my pain 20-50% depending on my activities and did not last. The only reason I agreed to it was for insurance approval - I did not want to be denied when it came to the date and my OS was scheduling 5m out. My OS scheduled my surgery at the first visit 6m out after injection so I did not too long to wait and knew it would be approved.

I am now 7wks post right hip replacement and life is again bright and getting brighter. I can do things around the house and drive again. I can get in and out of the car without pain and tears (toward the end it was awful). I was actually using a plastic bag on the car seat so I could slide around easier. I feel fortunate that this recovery is moving along well. I am over the frustration and just thankful. My personality is even coming back. My husband says he feels like he has his wife back (long term pain does interesting things to our personalities). He says even at 7 weeks he sees me full of interest in things and more energy.

I was not a runner like you or multi mile walker (unless you count work when I was younger) but I did enjoy riding my bike and walking my back fields as we have 70 acres. I now look forward to doing this again come spring and riding my bike again as well as going on vacation and walking lots.

I can relate to your upset, we think we have the knees done and can have our lives back and then something else. The good part is that the hips are a quicker and easier recovery as a rule than the knees and I had good knee recoveries. Within a year I never thought about my left hip - but I still notice the knees some days. I just look to getting my life back and am thankful we have that technology. There are quite a few people on bonesmart that have all 4 lower joints replaced.

Keep us posted, the hip side is as friendly as the knee side.
 

Jamie

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@Mollymax, I'd love to be able to help you find a good surgeon but I see you you're in Scotland. Celle must not have noticed that. Unfortunately I don't have access to surgeon information outside the United States.

I'll second what the others have said. Get your hip replaced as soon as possible so you can realize that happy life you want. You'll be able to do marathon walking after your recovery. I'm not sure who may have told you that you can't, but normally it's only the higher impact sports that can be frowned upon after a THR. And even that is in question these days as more patients go on to run and play some high impact sports. I hope you can get a surgeon locked in soon.
 

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I am in great pain with my hip.
I am so sorry @Mollymax to hear this. After two knee surgeries, you may have thought you were good to go for a while. How disappointing, but I hear hips are easier than knees because knees are so much more complicated.
I was a runner in my youth, and did jazzercize classes, plus my job had me on my feet most of the time.
Tonight I almost did not make it out of a chair with a pillow, from the severe pain, while having dinner with friends. Surgery can’t come soon enough. The pain was absolutely searing from hip to knee. It took my breath away.
Could your former primary doctor be able to help you find a referral in your new location?
Maybe your former knee surgeon may be able to refer you to someone in your new location?
In my youth, I did not understand why people moved slower as they age. Now I thoroughly understand.
 

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@Mollymax Please don't make the mistake that I made with my left hip. I went to endless PT due to the pain that you are feeling. In the end it only caused more damage meaning a longer, more complicated recovery. If the diagnosis is arthritis nothing will improve. My hip collapsed due to all the activity.

Are you on the wait list for a consultation?
 

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Hello @Mollymax. Love that you’re in Scotland. My ancestors hail from there. I so agree with @Jaycey. Don’t wait any longer than you have to. I “jumped through all the hoops” with steroids, PT, etc. all the while intuitively feeling that none of it was the answer. The pain became increasingly worse to the point of 18 months later, I was almost disabled before I finally got a referral to OS. Then I was lucky that my husband knew one from his work at the medical center or I would have had to wait another 3 months just for the consult. The OS looked me straight in the eye and said, with so much compassion, it brought tears to my eyes: “Really, Pat, 18 months?” Never again will I suffer that way and I’m on a mission to try and get the message out that no one needs to suffer and just bear with it, either. Some timing aspects can’t be helped but I was more scared by what I couldn’t do than having surgery. I had too much of an active life I wanted to lead and I had a doctor who listened and helped me get there. I don’t know about your knee surgeons but my OS and his group’s specialty are just hips AND knees. Please, keep us posted on your search and progress. Prayers and blessings to you in the coming New Year that you find answers to restore your health. Pat.
 

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@Mollymax

Here's another warning about PT. Prior to PT I was able to play golf while walking a few times a week, walk dogs 2-3 miles a few times a week, and use an elliptical a few times week while enduring the pain and knowing it would also hurt after.

In just two weeks of unneeded PT (my leg muscles were fine) my condition degraded to the point that I can only walk the dogs a few times a week. It hurts when I start and then numbs up for a few miles but hurts after and the next day.

I still do it because I want to heal from the surgery and not have to rebuild and overstretch atrophied muscle at the same time. I've also been advised that anything that keeps the muscles active prior to surgery helps with recovery. Of course the risk is a collapse and I pray it doesn't happen prior to surgery.

I wonder how many of us were runners for years and had career jobs that required standing and walking during the entire shift? I'm a yes on both of those but I didn't run marathons, did a few miles every other day for stress relief and physical fitness.
 
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Mollymax

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Hi all. Hope everyone had a good new year. Here we are in a new decade, a new year. Thanks everyone for your replies. I guess I am disappointed because I thought getting my knees done would let me back to pain free walking. I know the surgeon said I couldn't run with knee replacements but I thought I would walk ok. That's not the case. I was worried that the pain I was getting in thigh and down leg to ankle was from my knee but reading some of your posts it does seem to be from the hip. The hip pain is much more severe than the knee pain. I was walking up to 26 miles just the week before both knee ops. I can barely walk 6 miles now without being in terrible pain.
I really can't see that PT will do me any good as many of you are saying however I have no choice. Only once I see them can I get referred to orthopaedics. If I was still at my previous doctors it would have been a referral to ortho right away. I don't know these doctors and they don't know me. I feel like moving in with my daughter back home just to go back to my old doctor. I wonder whether phoning my previous OS would do any good but I doubt it as it's a different area now. I am 130 miles further away from her.
I do worry that by continuing to try walk distance I could cause my hip to collapse. Walking through the pain of my knees was doable but walking through the hip pain is very hard.
A big part of me says quit complaining things could be worse. We lost my son in law to cancer 7 months ago. Sadly it was my daughters second husband. The first also died from cancer at 39 years old and now her second husband too. That is unfair not my hip giving out you could say. I just can't cope with the pain and lack of mobility it is causing. Yes I am selfish in thinking I got my knees done to get my life back and now I am worse. Sorry for the moan.
 

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Welcome to the hip side @Mollymax I'm happy you've joined us as you are already familiar with the infinite encouragement and support found through engaging on the forum. May you find the same consolation on the hip side as you did during your knee surgeries and recoveries.

It sounds as though an x-ray already confirmed you have severe arthritis in your left hip. Given that diagnosis, please consider scaling way back on your walking until you begin slowly easing back into it after your THR. Most of us can relate to the pain of a deteriorating hip that you describe having experienced it ourselves. It can be truly miserable and definflty hinder us from engaging as we desire, but thankfully it's only temporary and you will get through this with the same strength and determination that carried you through two knee replacements and recoveries.


A big part of me says quit complaining things could be worse. We lost my son in law to cancer 7 months ago. Sadly it was my daughters second husband. The first also died from cancer at 39 years old and now her second husband too. That is unfair not my hip giving out you could say
You're right, things can always be worse and while it's only cold comfort realizing our situation could be worse, it does help to put things in perspective for us. It may not alleviate your fears, but given the choice between the loss of someone you love, or facing your own mortality over joint replacement, I'm quite sure all would choose joint replacement.

You can do this and we'll be here to motivate, uplift and inspire you all along the way. That you can count on.

Wishing you comfort, peace of mind and a New Year filled with many blessings!
 

leejaa

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Hang in there. It seems overwhelming when our hopes are dashed but there is a way out and you have already experienced it with your knees. For me also, the hip pain was much worse and more limiting. Whining is OK, this is a safe place to let our feelings out - most of us have had the same feelings at one time or another. You are also dealing with being in a new locale for you so do not have the comfort of same doctors who already know you. We are here to support you through this.
 

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I do worry that by continuing to try walk distance I could cause my hip to collapse.
@Mollymax ... it's good you recognize this risk. It's real and it's why you need to go easy on any activity right now. You do not want to further damage a hip that is already in bad shape. But know this is only temporary. It will all be resolved once you are able to get your hip replaced.

If you have to jump through the medical hurdles of therapy first, just try and go with it. I suggest you meet with your new orthopedic surgeon and tell him how fast it's worsening. If he requires you to try therapy or cortisone shots first, I suppose you have no choice. But tell him you know that will not help a hip that is bone on bone. Ask him to show you your hip's x-ray so you can both disucss the state of your hip joint. This image shows the difference between a heathy hip and one that needs to be replaced.


Since even if you schedule the surgery today it might be months down the road to get it done, ask if he will schedule you now while you are trying whatever alternatives he wants you to do. Then if things do improve, agree you would cancel the surgery. But, of course, we all know a hip that is bone on bone will not improve and you'll have your date faster once you've leaped through these hoops.

I do think you could have a heart-to-heart discussion like this with your surgeon about the issue of you being bone-on-bone. A surgeon knows this won't improve and it just makes no sense at all to put you through other treatments. Be as assertive as you can be with him.

We lost my son in law to cancer 7 months ago. Sadly it was my daughters second husband. The first also died from cancer at 39 years old and now her second husband too.
I am so very sorry to hear this has happened within your family. Losses like this on top of physical problem can easily get to a person. It's easy for us to all tell you to be strong, but I do understand that all this together makes things more difficult for you. But we're here to support you when you need it. We care about you and want you to get this hip problem behind you.

Sorry for the moan.
Never, ever apologize for venting here on BoneSmart. As I said, we understand and will do everything we can to help you get through this challenge.
 

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@Mollymax , hi whereabouts are you in Scotland? I’m in Ayrshire (Isle of Arran) and have had my two knees done in last 3 years. I have suffered from groin pain for last six - seven years and consultant physio told me back then that it was my hip. The pain was bearable back then and didn’t interfere with my life too much.
When I got my second knee done last Feb my surgeon got my hip x-rayed at same time and said it was time for a referral to one of her colleagues who specialised in hips. He wasn’t convinced that I needed a THR at first because I still had some cartilage at the joint, however he did say that there was another part of the hop further down that could go bone and bone but he couldn’t see it as it was occluded on the x-ray by pins that were in situ from a varicose vein op years ago!
Anyway to cut a long story short, he took me in as a day patient, put me under a general anaesthetic for a very short time (10 mins) and injected a local anaesthetic into the hip joint in the two areas. When I came round if there was no pain then it was the hip, if there was pain then that was the indicator that it wasn’t the hip and the pain was coming from somewhere else, prob my back.
There was absolutely no pain at all and for the first time in a long while I could walk with no pain or limp. So onto the waiting list I went, this was last Sept and my surgery is on 8th Jan.
Since the beginning of Nov, the hip has really gone downhill and I’m in a lot of constant pain and surprise surprise my knees have become really painful also. They are obviously taking a big hit from the hip and dont like it.
If no-one is too sure if it is your hip it might be worthwhile mentioning the local anaesthetic surgery to a consultant or consultant physio. Hope you get something sorted out soon
 

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