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THR Recovering at home from June 17 LTHR

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CG'sknees

CG'sknees

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Thank you for the wish for a sweet day. Much appreciated. I’m washed and dressed and fed. Happy as a baby at the moment.

I counted one circle of walking at about 75 steps, and PT suggested 5 circles per session, done 5 times a day. So 25 circles per day, or about 1,875 steps.
 

Eman85

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We all get caught up in counting steps, counting distance and how fast we can move thinking that it will lead to a faster recovery. I'm thick headed and it took some time, actually took until my second THR, for it to sink in that more and faster wasn't better. I found that slower and better form helped me more than speed and quantity. With plenty of time to google one of the best things I read about any PT is doing one good movement is much better than doing multiple poor ones. With my THR's it took me some time to connect the dots about doing too much and the uncomfortableness that followed a day or so after. Be careful of the ODIC you don't want to join.
As far as dislocation goes If it did happen I don't think you would have any doubt as others have posted it's passing out type pain.
 

Layla

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Washed, dressed and fed makes for a good day this early on. Glad you’re happy!
If the walking begins to cause pain or soreness afterward, please dial it back. I’d recommend you ice afterward also. At this point 5-10 minute walks around the house will suffice, stopping before you get too tired. Some light tidying up may feel fulfilling as well as an easy meal prep, or washing a few dishes. I wouldn’t worry about counting steps at this point…but it’s up to you.
Wishing you a peaceful, relaxing weekend!
@CG'sknees
 
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CG'sknees

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It’s two weeks (Day 14) since my LTHR on June 17, and I’ve been reassured that things are going very well. I had my first follow-up with the surgeon on Day 11. First an x-ray technician walked me to the x-ray room, and commented that I was walking (with walker) very well. The bandage was removed by medical assistant, then the surgeon came in, said what he saw in x-ray was excellent, and said I was doing a great job with my incision. I am 60 lbs overweight, so he had cautioned me after the surgery to be careful about the “tissue” (i.e., fat roll) that could press against the incision when sitting, and could cause an infection. I have religiously washed and dried the area, then sprinkled some talc-less baby powder in the crease and then placed some gauze to keep everything dry. He thought the gauze was a great idea! Yay, chubby grandma!!!

I’ve had three PT home visits, and surgeon said walking and the exercises I’m doing now with PT are all I need, no need to go to outside PT. I’m happy about that because I find that PT people have general ideas about what is important to do, but aren’t always familiar with what specific surgeries need. At least that was my experience when I did PT for my knees.

The overall conclusion from surgeon was “keep doing what you’re doing, and I will see you in four weeks”. OK!

I do find it hard some days to keep ahead of the pain, so that’s still a challenge for me. The one thing that really registers with me as evidence that I’m getting better is that I can lift my leg easily when I get into bed. So I don’t feel so helpless if I have to be alone for a few hours. What is most uncomfortable now, other than the deep ache that can happen between doses of pain relief, is the tenderness of the skin on my thigh. Anytime I press against anything it’s so sensitive. So much so that I can’t wear any of the knit pull on pants I relied on with my knee surgeries. It’s either pj tops, long T-shirts, or if someone other than my husband is coming over, the baggy knit pants I have for wearing to the beach.

Hubby has been getting out, which definitely helps his mood in caretaking. His grade has moved from C- to solid B. My son was my caretaker today (husband was working), and he was a solid A, but my daughter remains A+. And she will be here today, as hubby is playing in a golf tournament.

Well, there you have it. I’m posting this just past midnight on July 1st. Wishing you all a beautiful July.
 

Jaceyduck

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Sounds like you are doing well CG And getting round the house well .mine is due 4th August and I’m already nervous. I’ll be so relieved when it’s over and I’m on the recovery journey.
 
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CG'sknees

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@Jaceyduck I know that feeling of nervousness, for sure. I’m still feeling it! :happydance:But I’m a bit of a weirdo.
Some things that have definitely helped me in recovery are the handheld shower we put in, the hip replacement kit I bought from Amazon that has a cool grabber, and this hook thing that has helped me dress myself, and the chart I made to keep track of my meds. Prepping my environment for recovery helped with the pre-op nervousness.
Sending you lots of good wishes.
 

Layla

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Happy One Month Anniversary!
How are you doing? Hopefully all is well and you’re feeling stronger and more confident each week. Please let us know how you’re progressing as time allows. We’d love to hear from you.
All the best as you continue healing! :) :-) (:
@CG'sknees
 
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CG'sknees

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Good morning, Layla, and all my fellow Bonesmarties. Yes, I’m at four weeks along and I wish I could report I was feeling fantastic, but I’m not. The promise in early days of a quick recovery have not come to pass.

I’m definitely stronger, and that’s awesome. That’s my forte. But the continuing pain and tenderness of the side of my thigh is just a big downer. It keeps me in pajamas, as any other fabric is needlessly uncomfortable. I should have invested in caftans! The heavy duty drugs did nothing to alleviate that pain, and they actually were making me a buzzing, depressed wreck, so I cut them off last week. I alternate between doses of ibuprofen and acetaminophen when I feel the need. I don’t often feel pain in the joint, so that’s good, right? This morning I feel the twinge in my butt, actually. So I’ve got some strategically placed ice packs on me at the moment.

I’m still on the walker. I had a PT visit at end of week two and he said the head guy would be in contact with me on further visits. Well, that hasn’t happened, even though I’ve texted the head man. The PT who visited said we would work on the transfer to cane next. LOL Oh well, I know I’ll get there, just feeling a teeny bit unsteady still.

As to what I can do, I’ve made a dinner once, I’ve changed the sheets on my bed all by myself, I do my laundry (as a working mother, I trained my husband and children to do their own laundry decades ago, so my husband doesn’t need me to do his). I even swept the kitchen floor several times, using the broom to keep balance. I have a rather comfortable chair in my home “office”, where I try to sit and practice some singing. I’m so bored with the whole recovery business, that this gives me some respite until I can’t stand the discomfort of my thigh.

My biggest challenge at the moment is sleeping through the night. I get restless legs, which can be so torturous. I understand from a Facebook group I’ve dipped into, that’s it a common problem. I don’t want to take drugs for it, I’m trying not to go down that road, so I stroll through my house at night. Movement is the best therapy for it, but that sure doesn’t help with sleep.

Sorry to be such a downer in my report. I face having to do this again for my other hip, so that is disheartening. And that lingering C-19 bug is messing up my happy thoughts.

Wishing all a lovely Sunday. My children will be over for their weekly visit, which I do look forward to. And the ice is working it’s magic, so I’m gonna get myself out of bed and have some breakfast, and start the day!
Cheers!!❤
 

Layla

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Hello and Happy Sunday! Thanks for the update.

The promise in early days of a quick recovery have not come to pass.
Sorry you were led to believe anything other than this recovery takes time. It can take a full year and even longer for some, so at only four weeks out, you’re really still in the early stages of your body healing from the “controlled” trauma of THR. I found the tenderness in the area of my incision lasted for several months, slowing easing over time.

As far as pain control, if you’re opposed to your prescribed meds, we often recommend Extra Strength Tylenol at 4000 mg per day. Taking 1000 mg every six hours, not to exceed 4000 mg within any twenty four hour period. You would also need to calculate in anything else you're taking that contains Acetaminophen to stay within the safe range of no more than 4000 mg per 24 hrs. You may want to run this by your OS’s office and give it a try as it may bring you more relief. Also, don’t forget the power of ice for relieving pain and discomfort. Ice as often as you’re comfortable with. It should help. Ice any / all areas of discomfort.

No worries about transitioning to the cane from the walker until you’re feeling comfortable. I did practice with my husband walking on one side and a wall on the other, it helped build my confidence. You’ll know when the time is right.

It sounds as though you’re doing well with ADL’s (activities of daily living) in changing sheets, preparing a meal, sweeping. Good for you!

I have a suggestion for you to look into regarding sleep and restless legs, it’s Magnesium.

Magnesium supports the following:
Bone health
Healthy blood sugar
Cardiovascular health
Muscle relaxation and nerves
Promotes healthy sleep (falling asleep and staying asleep)


An article on Magnesium -
https://bonesmart.org/forum/threads/magnesium-is-a-star.20301/

I've also heard of drinking 4-6 oz of Q-Tonic before bed which is a water that contains quinine can help with restless legs. Read the label as some of the waters do not contain quinine, but quinine flavoring instead.

Have a lovely Sunday spending time with family. :)
@CG'sknees
 

LeeApril26

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CG’sknees,
I have the tenderness as well and ordered two inexpensive caftans from H&M by mail. They are very lightweight and loose even on size 18 me. I pop them in the washing machine and dryer. Not generally a caftan wearer but they are much lighter than my usual.
 

LeeApril26

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Hope you can find something.i had never shopped at H&M but a friend suggested I look.
 

Eman85

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It sounds like you've reached a plateau, we've all been there. When improvement stalls and time passes it's real easy to get down about this recovery. All I can say is it will get better but it will take more time. You'll most likely see an improvement and get on the recovery is progressing high. But from experience I can say that there are other plateaus down the road. I think we've all had the recovery blues at times and most of us were pre-Covid, adding that to the recovery I'm sure doesn't make it any easier.
 

kenadle

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Oh…. I can so relate to sleep problems and jumpy legs. Both just about drive me nuts. I never sleep on my back and then I could not sleep in any other position. It was horrible until I was able to sleep on operated side without pain and then I got brave and did the pillow thing between my legs on the opposite side. Now (5 weeks into this) I can finally switch positions but still don’t sleep very long. My longest sleep was 6 hours which is long for me.
I am usually out in the living room on the recliner after 3 hours.
Jumpy legs finally improved when I could change positions.
Here’s hoping both our sleeping improve.
Kenadle
 

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Hi,
Thank you for sharing your recovery story, and what a fun sense of humor
you have! :) If you're up to it, I'd appreciate
learning more about some things you said. I am NERVOUSLY anticipating
my first THR, so I have a lot to learn!



I am 60 lbs overweight, so he had cautioned me after the surgery to be careful about the “tissue” (i.e., fat roll) that could press against the incision when sitting, and could cause an infection. I have religiously washed and dried the area, then sprinkled some talc-less baby powder in the crease and then placed some gauze to keep everything dry. He thought the gauze was a great idea! Yay, chubby grandma!!!

1. I'm obese, and already worried about sooo many things with my recovery, and
It's great that you thought to use gauze, but it bothers me that
the surgeon/ nurse didn't teach you about all of this BEFORE you had surgery.
Did they consider giving you a supply of thick, waterproof dressings?

2. What do you wash your incision with? Do / did you have staples or
some other type of closure? I'm wondering so many things, because
people talk about keeping the incision DRY when they shower. At
what point were you allowed to start washing it?

3. I didn't know powder
would be allowed on an incision. My thought is that powder on top of freshly cleaned
and dried skin is great---but if moisture builds up, it would cause the
powder to become wet/ pasty.

I’ve changed the sheets on my bed all by myself
4. It's great that you did that, but was it difficult to do all of the bending
required?

5. Am I being annoying with all my questions, and you now wish you'd
never read my post?:yes:
 
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CG'sknees

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Hi! Yes, a lot of questions! I’m not good with the highlighting quotes thingy, so thank you for numbering your questions.
1. The surgeon did mention this in the pre-op room. Then in first post-op visit he placed a clean washcloth between my incision and roll and said that this could be a way to keep the area dry. The waterproof dressing stayed on for 10 days, was removed at first checkup.
2. I was allowed to shower the first night, though I didn’t until next morning when I was getting ready to be released. Once bandage was removed I just went over the incision lightly with soapy washcloth, and rinsed well. No staples, stitches. The strings were noticeable at first and are now disappearing so it’s that type (sorry, I don’t know the name for them).
3, I didn’t powder the incision, I powdered the crease above the incision, under the roll. Then I placed these gauze “pillows” to keep the whole area dry and the incision protected. One other thing, after showering I dried the area with cool setting of my hair dryer, then applied some powder to crease, etc. So no paste situation happened.
4. I just paced myself when changing the sheets, did one side when putting on the bottom sheet, then sat for a bit before tackling the other side. The bending was the most with that sheet. I tucked the bottom but didn’t worry about tucking in the sides. Then just pulled the blanket and coverlet back up. TaDaa!!! Bed all ready for doing my hip exercises. I have a cleaning service who usually do the sheet changing, but they had a car accident and had to cancel that week. They came back this week, thankfully!!
5. LOL. No, you’re questions are fine. I hope my answers sufficed.

One last thought, my surgeon mentioned that he did the anterior incision more to the side of my thigh so that it was further from my “tissue” overhang. He was a very sweet doctor, and was not judgey about my weight. I am working on losing weight so that hip replacement on the other side will not have this worry.

Wishing you best of luck on your journey! It definitely can be scary, and subject to ups and downs as you heal. But as my PT Eddie said on his final home visit, “be careful, don’t hurt yourself, so you keep moving forward in your recovery”.
Keep moving forward, Puggles!!
 

AxeAndExtraFox

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Hi we had surgery on the same day! I read your recovery thread and am glad to hear you are doing as well as you are!
Just a note on the caregiver husband: my husband dropped the ball a few times also. I ended up peeing on the floor a couple of times!
 

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