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THR On day 5 after THR, I found you. This is rough - thankful you're here.

ncarlson

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I figured there had to be a place like BoneSmart.org. So thankful I found you today. Started the day off crying, and it went downhill from there. Then I found you, cried again. But knew I was ok and this was normal. I also learned how to elevate my leg. From you, not the vague, cookie cutter materials I was given before surgery.

My surgeon was good, the facility was good, but I was NOT adequately prepared for this reality. Every person I talked to about THR said, "oh, it's wonderful! can't believe I waited so long..... It's really easy to recover from, my 84 year old mother did it!, yada yada". Nothing but raves and positive feedback. Pretty sure they forgot all about the first few weeks.

I'm so disappointed with the vague, ambivalent information I got from the PT visit ahead of time. Why would they not provide patients with useful and real information in the fancy spiral bound notebooks? Just pages filled with cartoon people doing exercises. Nothing preparing you for the trauma this really is. I don't even have anything in my materials about elevating my leg. How to, or even that I should.

My husband has been wonderful. But I have no idea what meds I was actually getting for the first 2 days - I just took what he handed me. By day 3, my stomach hurt so bad I said enough. What am I getting and when? I took over my own meds. And stupidly made my own trial and error adjustments. "Take as needed every x hours...". How about some specifics? Do I need to take this until it's gone? I stopped taking what turned out to be a once a day anti-inflammatory thinking I would be better off taking ibuprofen a couple times a day in between Tylenol and the dreaded "opioid". By evening yesterday my entire leg AND hip were so swollen I was scared.

Day 5. Today. As I said, started it crying - I don't know why. Found your forum. Found the forum on Post Op Depression, and posted my first post. I've been looking at all the helpful articles here for the entire day. It's been more helpful and informative than anything I got from my Orthopedic Surgery Center before surgery. So - thank you.

After finding BoneSmart: Been keeping my leg elevated today, have stopped feeling like I need to be up and racing around the house in my walker because I should be fine by now right?, and I'm going to take whatever meds I have as long as they are needed, including the opioids. And if I need a refill, so be it. I'm completely constipated, yes, have taken many things to help. But - this too shall pass ;-) If I'm not in misery over it, not going to worry.

So I guess this takes time. Thank you for being here. Thank you for validating what I intuitively knew - this is a really big thing that just happened to my body. It will heal, but it has been very traumatized. My own best friend hasn't even been here for me - she has no clue how hard this has been. "Hey, it's no big deal anymore I guess, it's same day surgery now - no biggie.....".

I'm sorry for any person I couldn't help through something like this in the past, but I will dam well be there for those in the future. And understand what they need and are going through.

Here's to a better day 6 on this journey. Thanks for letting me vent. And helping me understand, I don't need to be up walking around, standing around, or something other than resting on the couch with my leg truly elevated. With ice.

PS - I only took one week off work - "hey, not a big deal, right? back in my chair in a week". I'll be changing that Monday.
 

Mojo333

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:wave:
So glad you are here and ...officially:welome:
Thank you for being here. Thank you for validating what I intuitively knew - this is a really big thing that just happened to my body. It will heal, but it has been very traumatized.
Yes! And you will heal, but some major carpentry has been performed by a skilled surgeon and it is not a tonsillectomy.

I'm sorry for any person I couldn't help through something like this in the past, but I will dam well be there for those in the future. And understand what they need and are going through.
That is exactly what the forum represents, and I for one was the recipient of a lot of great advice and affirmation through my struggles, thus...the need I feel to give back.

I don't need to be up walking around, standing around, or something other than resting on the couch with my leg truly elevated. With ice
:yes!: Exactly.

PS - I only took one week off work - "hey, not a big deal, right? back in my chair in a week". I'll be changing that Monday.
Please do.... This recovery process takes time, and I really do mean it is well worth it.
Full recovery can take up to and over a year, but you will be feeling much better before then.
Keep the faith... And ask anything you want to ask from those who really know.
Healing hugs xxx
 

Mojo333

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Here are your very own recovery guidelines..

Hip Recovery: The Guidelines
1. Don’t worry: Your body will heal all by itself. Relax, let it, don't try and hurry it, don’t worry about any symptoms now, they are almost certainly temporary​
2. Control discomfort
rest
ice
take your pain meds by prescription schedule (not when pain starts!)​

3. Do what you want to do BUT​
a. If it hurts, don't do it and don't allow anyone - especially a physical therapist - to do it to you​
b. If your leg swells more or gets stiffer in the 24 hours after doing it, don't do it again.​

4. PT or exercise can be useful BUT take note of these

5. At week 4 and after you should follow this

6. Access to these pages on the website


BIG TIP: Hips actually don't need any exercise to get better. They do a pretty good job of it all on their own if given half a chance. Trouble is, people don't give them a chance and end up with all sorts of aches and pains and sore spots. All they need is the best therapy which is walking and even then not to excess.

We try to keep the forum a positive and safe place for our members to talk about their questions or concerns and to report successes with their joint replacement surgery.

While members may create as many threads as they like in a majority of BoneSmart's forums, we ask that each member have only one recovery thread. This policy makes it easier to go back and review history before providing advice.
 

djklaugh

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@ncarlson
My own best friend hasn't even been here for me - she has no clue how hard this has been. "Hey, it's no big deal anymore I guess, it's same day surgery now - no biggie.....".

If your friend has never had a joint replaced she sure does not know one single thing about what you are going through! It may, in these days of COVID, be same day surgery but that does not mean it isn't MAJOR surgery. Even when patients stayed in hospital for 2-3 days following this surgery they were not fully healed when they went home... they were sent home to heal and recuperate in familiar and more relaxed surroundings. If you want your friend to understand (maybe) you can find videos of actual hip replacement surgery on You Tube ... bet she would be totally shocked to see the real thing.

Medications can be tricky. I would urge you to call your surgeon's office and ask to speak first to his nurse or assistant (many surgeons have a PA or NP who works with them in addition to their office RN) and have that person help get the medications sorted out. It's OK to take less than prescribed .... but that may not keep ahead of your pain. Please do not take more of any medication without checking with your surgeon/his staff first.

I am glad you found us here at BoneSmart! The folks here have all been there, done that, and have the scars to prove it :yes!: And do keep us informed about how you are doing.
 

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Hi and Welcome to Bonesmart, we’re glad you found us! I agree with all you said, and I am another one who was very poorly prepared for this recovery.

I didn‘t have a hip replaced, I had a partial knee replaced, and my understanding from what I was told (and not told) and from what I’d read, it was not a big deal, less everything than a total knee replacement. Reality was a shock!

I heard the same things you did, my friends who’d had a replacement said it was the best thing they ever did and wished they’d done it sooner. Not one mentioned how hard the recovery was.

Then there were friends who‘ve never had a joint replacement encouraging me to “do all my PT”

I found Bonesmart at 4 weeks post op after suffering quite a bit with the PT, trying to be a good patient. Thanks to Bonesmart, I learned lots, and over time, took charge of my recovery. (It was a little scary ”defying” my medical authorities at first!)

Hang out here with us.
Bonesmart has a wealth of advice, information and support.
We will offer helpful suggestions, :idea:

Cheer your accomplishments :happydance:

And send hugs when you are feeling down. :console2:

Best wishes!
 

Eman85

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The one thing about all of us here is we've all been there and done that. The first 2 weeks are no day at the beach, but it does get better in time. Ice is the trick if you haven't figured it out yet. If you're using ice packs or bags keep them on long enough. My OS had a good program with the full color book at hip class and an icing machine that I used at the hospital and took home with me. I iced continuously for the first weeks. If I was still it was on me, makes a big difference in pain, bruising and swelling.
 

chialiyu

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Hug @ncarlson . The first several weeks are hard. It will get better.

After my surgery, I got up walk around the house every hour for at least several minutes, not to train the muscle or PT,etc, but to prevent blood clot. Feet pumps help too. Last time I didn't take any narcotic (seems I naturally have pretty good pain tolerance) but I did take all my aspirins as prescribed to prevent blood clot.

Elevate your legs and ice frequently will make you feel more comfortable. ICE, ICE, ICE.... As the amount of standing, walking, etc, if you don't feel comfortable, don't do it. Listen to your body (as all the forum advisors said).

You are still so early in the recovery. Be patient - don't listen to ppl who told you how easy it is because I bet they don't live with the one who experienced it. Now I am in my 5th months and I am telling all my coworkers how wonderful it is to live pain free, etc, which is true, but I didn't tell them how many weeks I can only sleep for less than 5 hours - the path of recovery.

Bonesmart is the best place for us. Glad we both find it here. I will be cheer for you.
 

FCBayern

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Welcome to BoneSmart @ncarlson :flwrysmile: Glad you found us, and sorry you weren't given a better idea of what to expect, unfortunately it's all too familiar a story. Don't be afraid of your pain meds or not doing any PT that will only aggravate your new hip. If you read the articles Mojo posted above for you and:ice::ice::ice: I think you will see improvements. this is a long haul recovery but we will be here to support you the whole way!
 

Jamie

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@ncarlson .... I'm so pleased you found us and are being helped by the educational information and personal support of staff and other members. That is why we exist! We recognize that many surgeons just don't accurately portray what a patient needs to know about life after surgery.

No more crying....you're part of the BoneSmart family now and we'll always be here for you. :friends:
 

Layla

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Hello @ncarlson
Welcome to BoneSmart. Thanks for joining us!
Your tears of joy in finding the goldmine of information and support BoneSmart offers is much better than tears shed due to pain, fear and uncertainty. I feel your relief through your words and its heartwarming.

I’m sorry you felt so misinformed by your medical team and mislead by well meaning people, many who’ve never experienced joint replacement themselves most likely. BoneSmart was a lifeline for me also. There is something so comforting in communicating with those who’ve “been there, done that” or are going thorough the same experience as you in real time.

Read through the Recovery Guidelines when you’re able, it sadly took me a week or more before my concentration allowed me to absorb anything I read. The Guidelines hold a lot of useful information and if questions arise, lights never go out here. You’ll most often find someone to offer helpful advice or the support and encouragement that make this site such an asset.

Wishing you comfort as you begin the journey! :)
 
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ncarlson

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You are all angels. :angel: Truly. It is good to be shedding tears of gratitude and love for such wonderful people. Thank you so much.

Something unexpected that comes from this (no matter what my end result is), is a new understanding for what I could not understand before. I think of all the people I've seen over the years using walkers. I never knew how much it hurts their hands, and their shoulders, and how helpless you feel because you can't just carry your laptop and water and all of your "stuff" while you are struggling to walk. Unless of course you shove it into a tote bag hanging on the walker and/or a fanny pack and haul it along with you. I didn't realize how hard it would be to be dependent on someone else for help, and what it feels like to lose your independence. I'll definitely be finding use for this reality in my future to do for others.

Today is such a better day - thanks to you all. It's just day 6. And it's ok that I'm not out conquering the world yet.
:fasthorse:

I'm sleeping well at night - thankful for that. And since I started elevating legs yesterday, staying with the right meds at the right time, swelling is so much better.

Glad to hear the input on keeping it iced. Sounds like there is no such thing as too much ice time. I have large gel packs and keep rotating them.

@Mojo333 - while reading through some threads yesterday, I found one where you said something like at first with the walker, you were "leaning on it so heavily you were nearly levitating at times"
:heehee:
Still makes me laugh every time I think about it and picture it - well said.
Another piece of this thing I wasn't prepared for - the walker world.

I, of course, was going to use crutches - decided during my pre-op PT training. Because we have stairs. Hey, I got this, I'll just pop around on crutches as needed.

Then reality came. The moment after they let you wake up just enough from surgery, eat some animal crackers, get your pain under control and say "Ok, now we need you to get up and walk to the bathroom so we can send you off home". :yikes:

Will you be using a walker dear?
Um, no I went with the crutches. But how bout we try that walker instead.

After they wheeled me to the back door where my husband waited with the car, I looked at the crutches they handed me and said - oh dear what have I done! I'm going to need a walker.
No problem, they had them ready and waiting.

Here's to day 6!!! You are all so wonderful.

Thank you XOXO
 

Layla

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Something unexpected that comes from this (no matter what my end result is), is a new understanding for what I could not understand before. I think of all the people I've seen over the years using walkers. I never knew how much it hurts their hands, and their shoulders, and how helpless you feel because you can't just carry your laptop and water and all of your "stuff" while you are struggling to walk.
I can relate to this. I felt a measure of shame once I began limping because I never really gave enough thought as to WHY most people are limping and that there was pain involved. I have a heightened awareness now when I see someone limping even lifting a quick prayer at times. So a lesson of humility for me.

I think you’re going to do great. Stick with us...we’ll happily see you through. :)
 

FCBayern

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So happy to hear your are feeling better @ncarlson. :) I can relate to having a different understanding of people after you walk in their shoes for a while. I can be an impatient person when I'm trying to get something done but I no longer have any problem patiently waiting for someone with a limp, cane, walker. I was that guy not long ago. Stick with us for support and advise, we'll help guide you to the light at the end of the tunnel.
 

Merrytaylor

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I figured there had to be a place like BoneSmart.org. So thankful I found you today. Started the day off crying, and it went downhill from there. Then I found you, cried again. But knew I was ok and this was normal. I also learned how to elevate my leg. From you, not the vague, cookie cutter materials I was given before surgery.

My surgeon was good, the facility was good, but I was NOT adequately prepared for this reality. Every person I talked to about THR said, "oh, it's wonderful! can't believe I waited so long..... It's really easy to recover from, my 84 year old mother did it!, yada yada". Nothing but raves and positive feedback. Pretty sure they forgot all about the first few weeks.

I'm so disappointed with the vague, ambivalent information I got from the PT visit ahead of time. Why would they not provide patients with useful and real information in the fancy spiral bound notebooks? Just pages filled with cartoon people doing exercises. Nothing preparing you for the trauma this really is. I don't even have anything in my materials about elevating my leg. How to, or even that I should.

My husband has been wonderful. But I have no idea what meds I was actually getting for the first 2 days - I just took what he handed me. By day 3, my stomach hurt so bad I said enough. What am I getting and when? I took over my own meds. And stupidly made my own trial and error adjustments. "Take as needed every x hours...". How about some specifics? Do I need to take this until it's gone? I stopped taking what turned out to be a once a day anti-inflammatory thinking I would be better off taking ibuprofen a couple times a day in between Tylenol and the dreaded "opioid". By evening yesterday my entire leg AND hip were so swollen I was scared.

Day 5. Today. As I said, started it crying - I don't know why. Found your forum. Found the forum on Post Op Depression, and posted my first post. I've been looking at all the helpful articles here for the entire day. It's been more helpful and informative than anything I got from my Orthopedic Surgery Center before surgery. So - thank you.

After finding BoneSmart: Been keeping my leg elevated today, have stopped feeling like I need to be up and racing around the house in my walker because I should be fine by now right?, and I'm going to take whatever meds I have as long as they are needed, including the opioids. And if I need a refill, so be it. I'm completely constipated, yes, have taken many things to help. But - this too shall pass ;-) If I'm not in misery over it, not going to worry.

So I guess this takes time. Thank you for being here. Thank you for validating what I intuitively knew - this is a really big thing that just happened to my body. It will heal, but it has been very traumatized. My own best friend hasn't even been here for me - she has no clue how hard this has been. "Hey, it's no big deal anymore I guess, it's same day surgery now - no biggie.....".

I'm sorry for any person I couldn't help through something like this in the past, but I will dam well be there for those in the future. And understand what they need and are going through.

Here's to a better day 6 on this journey. Thanks for letting me vent. And helping me understand, I don't need to be up walking around, standing around, or something other than resting on the couch with my leg truly elevated. With ice.

PS - I only took one week off work - "hey, not a big deal, right? back in my chair in a week". I'll be changing that Monday.
Ncarlson, you sound exactly like I sounded. I was totally unprepared for what was to come. No specific direction and minimizing the recovery from everyone including the surgeon and his staff. I too,had an excellent surgeon and the hospital was great. The minute I got home though, it all went downhill fast. The pain, I thought, was horrific. I was taking Norco two tabs every four hours day and night. Instead of lying in bed elevating and icing (although I did do it at times) I was up and walking around because this is what I thought I was supposed to do and after all, this was going to be a very easy and quick recovery. Not so much!
Anyway, fast forward to now - it will be six weeks Tuesday - I feel great. I have little or no pain. I’m almost, sort of walking normally and I can finally say that I’m glad I did it. At the beginning I kept thinking, why did I ever do this? It gets much better!
 

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I was exactly like you. Surgery went well. Spent the night in the hospital then I went home. I thought I was prepared but heck no I wasn’t. It was hell for the first 3 weeks. Not from pain. Tylenol and ice did the trick but I couldn’t sleep in my bed. First 2 weeks on the recliner day and night. My independence was taken away. I cried got depressed and even wonder why I had this operation. If it wasn’t for BoneSmart and the advisors I would of never made it. I’m 4 months post op now but I will never forget those first 4 weeks and I will never forget the support I got from this site.
 

Jamie

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@ncarlson .... if you feel like you're bending over when using the walker, be sure it's not set a little too low for you. Here's how to properly set a walker so as not to put strain on your arms and back.

1610328753868.png


If you find yourself leaning over, try a notch higher and see if that works better. You can also make the wheels one notch higher than the legs. Some people find that is more comfortable.
 

Eman85

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Jamie probably has the answer to your problem. The height of the walker and how you use it will make a difference in how your arms feel. If you use crutches or a cane it's important to have the adjustment right. A trick for a walker if you want it to slide easier on hard floors is tennis balls on the back legs.
 

Moreaumarc

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Take your time, head in the sand, do what you can tolerate each day. Ice and elevation are key. I am 4 weeks in still have some minor swelling, and I continue to ice and elevate morning, noon and night. Be sure your are hydrating and taking colace or something similar. The first two, two and half weeks were definitely way more difficult than I was led to believe. We all recover at our own pace, there are no points for rushing anything. Best of luck and do not hesitate to ask questions, especially to your surgeons office. They are also there to support you post op.
 
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ncarlson

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Day 8 was a better day. I am just so overwhelmed by the love and support here. It is truly a gift and answer to prayers. I just knew there had to people like you out there :) . It has changed things from seeming "really bad" to "having hope".

@Merrytaylor and @Nchiodo and @Moreaumarc - thanks for your understanding and encouragement. I'm not at the point yet where I'm NOT sorry I did this, but sounds like it's still hopeful to come.

@Jamie and @Eman85 - the walker is supposed to slide? Mine doesn't have wheels, I have been picking it up for each step, then leaning on it as I walk toward it. My palms are bruised. Figured that's a sign I'm leaning too heavily and need to relax a little. But I think it's at the right height.

I was able to use 1 crutch to get around for short distances today - yay! I also did go back to work - I'm remote, but have a good setup at desk and chair, a cozy couch with leg pillows, a lap desk, and laptop. My office is in lowest level, so once my husband dropped me off down here (I'm not allowed on stairs alone) :) :-) (: , I could keep my ice pack in the "beer" fridge and at least get cold water without getting help.

And I didn't cry once today. Grateful for a better day.
 

chialiyu

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Looking back - day 8 is SUPER EARLY in the recovery. From what I can remember - the most important thing is to keep yourself comfortable, do activities (feet pumps, short walks) to avoid blood clots, and don't expect you can walk one mile the next day! I still remember several times I was frustrated at myself when I got swollen and sore after cooking a meal when I was in the 2nd week, until I found this forum and knew it was expected.
I will have my LTHR surgery tomorrow. Wish me luck! You will soon have someone joining you on the recovery road!
 

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