THR Roseanne in recovery

I even had a relative refer to THR as being the equivalent of an oil change in a car. Needless to say, they never had one.
On this board you will hear a reference to a car at time. The reference is THR is like getting hit by a car in an operating room. What is done to us to perform this procedure is pretty traumatic to say the least. Ask around if anyone has ever dislocated a hip, not something you ever hear about but that is what happened to us, forget about the hardware installation.
@Roseanne I'm so sorry that you have family members who are unwilling to accept that this is major surgery. Perhaps, the next time someone suggests it is the equivalent of an oil change, have them watch a video of the surgery so they can see what actually happens in the OR. Or perhaps, ask, "when was the last time your mechanic needed a power saw and hammers to change your oil."
My hip recovery got off to a slow start. I was still using my cane at six weeks post-op and I felt as though I would never recover. But, by six months out, there were days when I actually "forgot" that I'd had surgery and I was out hiking and cycling with no pain!

Little wins now are what keep my spirits up. Was able to drive to the grocery story today by myself with only my walking stick in the cart in case I needed it. That was actually a big win.
Exactly! And if you jot down your wins -- big and little -- as you are doing here, you will be able to see your progress over time.

Little wins now are what keep my spirits up. Was able to drive to the grocery story today by myself with only my walking stick in the cart in case I needed it. That was actually a big win. Being able to vent my feelings here also is a tremendous help. I just wasn't prepared for the grief, sadness and feelings of helplessness that overwhelmed me. Adjusting to the reality of my new normal is what life is all about now.
That's great! Entering and exiting my car took me quite awhile to do painlessly. Driving not a problem, just the in/out of our Honda CRV was problematic. fyi, I go for my 1 year anniversary check up in a few days.
now dealing with frequent bouts of sadness as I try to maneuver life with a disability, even if it is temporary.
Hello Rosanne,
Keep reminding yourself that this isn’t a permanent disability or handicap. You’re recovering from surgery and aside from the unexpected and unfortunate time with pneumonia, you seem to be progressing normally for only one month post op. Try to keep your focus on the brighter future you will enjoy.

Rather than look at the day to day, possibly feeling like progress is dragging, once a week, on the same week day each week, reflect back to the previous week and you will see your progress. Driving to the grocery store and shopping was a great sign that you’re on your way. Just imagine how wonderful you’ll be feeling by the holidays! :banana-santa:
Follow up appt with the PA today. Took x rays of lungs and hip. Pneumonia is gone and hip prosthetic "looks good". Decided to use the walker since the doctors office is so far from the parking garage that I was afraid of too much pain walking that distance with just the walking sticks. Started sobbing as soon as I got into the exam room and told the PA that the whole experience had been such a beat down I was having a hard time recovering emotionally from it. He said in his opinion I was not as far along as I should be for almost 5 weeks post surgery. His recommendation was take more tramadol for the pain and walk more. So frustrating having a different PA or doctor for every visit. No continuity of care. The pain I still have is from sitting to standing need to wait about 5-10 seconds for the hip pain to stop before I can take the first step. Outside of thigh is completely numb from my hip to my knee. Reading some of the other posts guess I need to return to frequent icing.

Decided to take the PA's advice and try walking more. Tossed the walker in the back of the car and drove to a spot with hubby where I could walk on a flat surface with sidewalks. Once I got moving the pain subsided and I was able to walk close to a mile. Guess there is no shame in needing a walker 5 weeks post surgery and that it probably gives me a better gait since my weight is more evenly distributed than with a cane or walking stick. From everything I have read here sounds like the pain is soft tissue healing, even around the hip joint. Hip joint pain has been the same for the past 3 weeks and worries me. Wondering if I will be needing a cane or walking sticks for the rest of my life. Have a follow up appt with OS next Friday.
Pneumonia is gone and hip prosthetic "looks good".
This is great news!
He said in his opinion I was not as far along as I should be for almost 5 weeks post surgery.
Rubbish - there is no timeline for this recovery. You had the added complication of Pneumonia! Please don't feel pressured to do anything.
The pain I still have is from sitting to standing need to wait about 5-10 seconds for the hip pain to stop
Many of our members suffer this. It's called stutter step pain. Most people find that standing in place and gently stretching before you set off eases this.
Guess there is no shame in needing a walker 5 weeks post surgery
Use the walker as long as you feel you need it. It does offer better stability and allows you to focus on making sure your gait is balanced.
Wondering if I will be needing a cane or walking sticks for the rest of my life.
No you won't. Still early days for you. Please don't get discouraged. All this just takes time and tons of patience.
No shame in using walker if needed, better than hurting yourself. I was on walker for 6 weeks due to small fracture still present after my first post op check up.
I so badly wanted to be walking free of devices by mid May last year for a wedding but still needed a cane because it was outdoors on grass that was bumpy and uneven.
I kept my cane in back seat for months.
And don't let ridiculous comments get you down. People just can't keep quiet about an experience they never had.
No shame in any of this and we've all been there. Finding a good flat place to walk is the best, I used the small walking track at our park. It's a short paved oval and had some benches so if I got tired I could sit and rest. My other favorite place to learn to walk was the Walmart. Paved flat parking lot and they have shopping carts which are the best wheeled walkers. My recovery was in winter so it was nice to walk in a heated building now it would be nice to walk in AC. I could walk very slowly and no one would even notice me. The shopping cart protects you and no one notices you're practicing how to walk.
Really appreciate all the kind, helpful comments. Went for another mile walk today with the walker and did okay without too much pain. Needed a long nap afterwards.
Surgeon approved my request for an additional 4 weeks on FMLA so looks like I will be off work until October.

Sure hope at some point I will be able to ditch all the walking devices and return to a normal life. That will be a happy day.
Hi :wave: @Roseanne
Glad you decided to baby that new hip....using an assistive device is a better way to get some gait training in without overdoing it.

Don't mean to pile on, but you are with folks who know.... these really are early days and patience is required in large portions.
Don't know why your PA would discourage you by saying you were behind the curve
Every body has its own curve and your recovery sounds like the start of many successful recoveries at not quite 6 weeks.
Try to take a closer look at this recovery article, particularly the charts.

. I still take 900mg/day of Gabapentin and probably will for the rest of my life
I don't know what other conditions would require this, but don't think you should have to expect this.

Take the walking slow and steady and stay with the ice and rest after activity.
You will get there.
At 5-6 weeks into recovery I wouldn't be embarrassed using walker.
Like I mentioned in another post I used walker for 6 weeks, (maybe more cause I don't remember)!
Kept walker by my bed even after graduating to cane for bathroom trips late at night. Better than falling.
You will get there, this is a patience game and no matter how hard you push to get better the hip pushes back and says "take it easy on me."
I'm well over 17 months into my recovery and still days I need to give in to my body, lay on couch with ice pack for an hour.
But majority of my days I'm just fine and my life has returned and so will yours. Just give it time and don't listen to anyone who says you should be further along than you are. You are you and the one recovering. And each of us has an individual recovery, no two seem to be the same.
All my best.
Thank you all for the responses. Met with my surgeon today who was very positive and upbeat about my long term outlook for a full recovery. Implant looks good, walking getting easier. Finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Able to walk with walking sticks now rather than the walker but will keep it handy for longer excursions. Surgeon said it was very unusual to develop pneumonia after hip surgery and he could not say what caused it. Asked him to look at the x-ray of my left hip as well which he said looked good, with no need for a replacement any time soon. Big relief.

So glad to have the first 6 weeks behind me and this forum as a place to vent and get information from those who are further down the road. What an emotional roller coaster this has been!
Finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
I hope you're feeling even better since you last posted.
Happy Two Month Anniversary!
A great rest of the week to you, Roseanne! :)
@Layla, thanks for checking in with me. After a few attempts to do the daily walk with walking sticks rather than the walker, my hip pain on the outside returned to a point where I had to go back on the walker. Sticks are ok for short distances and around the house but for a mile long walk even at a slow pace with the sticks, the pain returns. Not sure why that is but I have decided to keep using the walker for as long as it takes for daily walks. At first it felt like a huge step backwards but now I have come to the conclusion that the walker is my "friend" rather than something that I need to ditch as soon as possible. It allows me to walk mostly pain free which is what I need right now. Not doing any PT as this point so walking is my go to exercise.

The cautionary tales I have read on this forum prevent me from rushing into anything that may cause damage to the new implant or soft tissues as they heal. Yesterday was the first day since surgery that I was able to tie my shoe on the right foot. Felt like a huge accomplishment. Baby steps each day seem to be doing the trick. Still off work and told them early October would be my return date.
There is so much mental and emotional healing that has to take place in addition to the physical. Going into this had no clue how much pain, trauma and anxiety came with the surgery and recovery. Only those of us who have been through it can appreciate the full extent of this life changing operation. So grateful for this forum and all who share their stories. Don't feel so alone on this journey.
So sorry to hear you have been struggling but the mental seachange to think of your Walker as your afriend is huge… I feel the same way about my crutches. I know I can manage without them but they are helping me relearn the proper way of walking and form with no risk of waddling, stooping etc.

Re the start-up pain…my physio deceived this as “warming the engine” on a cold morning .. stand up straight. Engage core muscles, clenchbutticks and Walk! Small steps heel to toe and then slightly increase stride.

I walk around on the grass in our garden as well as on the concrete to give my legs just a slight balance challenge. I measure in time not steps. After 45 mins (with a short rest in between fir stretching) I then stop, have a mug of tea and ice up for 30 mins…

This routine over the past two weeks has helped. Yesterday I went back to the physio who was very pleased but she added three exercises which, at the time, I thought “easy Peasy”… nope!

Really sore this morning and waiting for my dose of parecetemol and eyeing up the remaining bottle of morphine..

Today is the start of the 6th week so I really empathise with you.

We will get there and it will take as long as our own bodies dictate! Best of luck!
@SurreyGirl, that's pretty funny about eyeing up the remaining bottle of morphine. This morning before my walk I popped two tramadol pills that were left over from my last refill. I ended up counting the remaining pills in the bottle knowing that I had better make them last since the doc will not refill again. Tramadol has been a lifesaver as far as pain management goes. Nothing else worked for me. Found out that it is going to be discontinued in the US as of January 2024. Bummer!

I do want to learn the proper way of walking again. The earliest PT appointment I could get was the end of October so between now and then I think the walker will help with my gait. I had a horrible limp prior to surgery and the doc said my hip was at stage 4 or severe osteoarthritis. I think that is why my recovery has been slow with all the soft tissues completely out of whack from limping for so long.

Thanks for all the suggestions and encouragement. We will get there. Our new hips are now the boss and dictate what we can and can't do. So be it! :)
I do want to learn the proper way of walking again.
Try heel-toe walking if you are limping.

This involves striking the ground with your heel first, then rolling through your heel to your toe, and pushing out of the step with your toe.

It takes a concentrated effort, but I believe you'll notice a difference. Give it a try.
@Jaycey yes, I have been practicing the heel to toe walking with the walker. And of course I overdid it to the point where my big toe was hurting from all the pressure.
Have backed off a bit from that and feel my gait is much improved. Not much limp left which I am happy about. Thank you for the reminder.

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