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[THR] SelfHelp's recovery Thread

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SelfHelp

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Had my 1st post-op today with OS. X-Rays looked good, hardware position looks good, no fractures, continue with recovery.
When sleeping on the good side the pain I felt from the operated hip comes from the Greater Trochanter and is due to stretching of the tissue, it will take time and doing the recommended exercises and stretching.
OS noted that flexibility of my new hip was not where he expected it to be by week 2. I told him that I had focused more on walking than doing the exercises and stretches outlined in his handbook. He asked I take the exercises and stretches serious and do them on a regular basis. Among the exercises outlined the Lying Butterfly Stretch was the most important. Another important one was to lay the ankle of the operated leg on top the ankle of the good leg and gradually move the ankle of the operated leg up until crossing the good leg above the knee, similar to ankle-on-knee sitting position, forming the number 4. I was appalled since it looked like legs were crossed and violated one of the precautions. But OS says that it is ok to cross at the ankles and this stretch does not cross legs at any time. Anyways, in 4 weeks he wants me to be able to demonstrate forming the number 4. I will need a lot of courage with this stretch.
Overall, the post-op was good and I feel confident that my recovery is progressing.
 
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Layla

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Great news that all looks well. That's always reassuring.
I hope you're soon able to achieve your goals through your surgeon's guidance.
I didn't even attempt side sleeping for several months, you're braver than me, lol.
Wishing you a great evening and rest of the week!
@SelfHelp
 
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Thanks @Layla , I have been side sleeper all my life, last 2 weeks sleeping on my back have been difficult, my back gets sore and I snore so loud that I wake up everyone in the bedroom including myself. I wish I could only go back to my side sleeping position and get a full night sleep. I ordered a body pillow from amazon, it is made of memory foam, I am hoping it will keep the legs further apart when in side sleeping position and eliminate the pain I now feel from stretching of tissue around the Greater Trochanter.
 
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@julesglass , congratulations, we made passed our 2 week post-op! How are you doing with your recover? Are you doing hip exercises and stretches, recommended either by OS or PT? I saw list of exercises and stretches in the handbook I received at my pre-op, but ignored them thinking I would just walk and let the hip heal. At my post-op I find out that OS and PT want me to do these exercises and stretches to increase flexibility and strength of the hip over the 6 week recovery period. They could tell that I had not done these exercises and stretches and my hip had less range of motion than it should. They urged me to start doing them and the Lying Butterfly Stretch was the most important one.
@Mojo333 , @Elf1 , @Layla , did you do any recommended hip exercises and stretches? Or just rest with occasional walks and let the hip recover?
 
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Layla

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Happy Two Week Anniversary!
I did a handful of exercises for a couple weeks then stopped. Standard exercices such as ankle pumps, quad set, hamstring set, glute set, straight leg raises, ascending / descending stairs etc. At three weeks I went to three PT sessions, then stopped. The physical therapist had me doing clamshells which I found out are not beneficial, she massaged my incision, then she'd put me on machines while she sat on her computer typing and printing things off. She spent more time doing that than working with me. I decided it wasn't for me.
My big takeaway was heel-toe walking which she taught me. It was effective in helping me lose a little limp I had. So it was not a complete waste of my time.

Recovery is personal. You need to do what's right for you. My only advice is not to push through anything that hurts. If it hurts stop. Your body is injured and trying to heal so please take it slow and easy.

Wishing you only the best, please stay in touch and let us know how it's going for you.
@SelfHelp
 

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High five to you @SelfHelp, we've got two weeks under our belts. I go for my check up tomorrow to see how things are. I have struggled with keeping the pain at bay so I haven't done much with the three exercises they gave me. Standing lifting leg with bending the knee, swing leg out to the side and then toward the back. That butterfly move looks like a good one however I'm unable to that one due to pain in the groin area when I swing my leg out to the side in a standing position. I'll find out tomorrow about exercises. I do plan on doing some PT later in recovery closer to going back to work. Take care
 

Mojo333

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This has been an oft mused conundrum...PT or no PT?
At my post-op I find out that OS and PT want me to do these exercises and stretches to increase flexibility and strength of the hip over the 6 week recovery period.
Do they mean initial 6 week recovery?

They could tell that I had not done these exercises and stretches and my hip had less range of motion than it should.
This doesn't seem possible to ascertain at 2 weeks out.:scratch:
Do remember, Tightness is a normal occurrence after this kind of major surgery. Your surgeon did major carpentry work and disturbed every millimeter of soft tissue in this area. At this stage...You aren't tight because your muscle is underused and needs to be stretched and rehabbed. You're tight because your tissue is healing...
I did some light stretching...not pushing anything to the point of pain...so you can try it and see if you feel it is helpful.
I wouldn't do any motion repetitively or push myself...plenty of time to strengthen and tone after things are more settled.
 

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@SelfHelp I really didn't do much the first two weeks, some heel pumps and bending my knee, etc. I guess some of the stuff I did was basically some of the exercises they wanted me to do. I basically just kind of did what felt good to me. I rested, elevated when needed, iced a lot and walker around in the house.

I just started outpatient PT this week as my OS asked me to go to work on gait/limp. Jury is still out on whether I will continue, not sure I agree that she should be working on my core now at 2 1/2 weeks. Taking things slowly and in my own time!
 

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I did clamshells but not till 6 weeks out. At 2 weeks I still had log leg! Can't even imagine a PT or OS passing judgement on mobility at 2 weeks. You've got tough taskmasters! :holysheep:
Listen to your body. Yes stretches and strengthening exercises may have their place but...all things at the right time. Don't feel pressured. You've got a lot of healing to do. I found the ROM came with normal activity.
 

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@SelfHelp I'm 4 weeks out and have had 2 follow up visits at the OS office (with his PA) and nothing has been said about flexibility. I had in-home PT for 3 weeks and she gave me some gentle strengthening exercises but said to hold off on things like the butterfly stretch until more healing has happened. I seem to remember with my first THR a couple of years ago--different in-home PT--doing some very gentle flexibility work at the 3 to 4 week mark. As others have said, if it hurts, don't do it.
 

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My OS said no PT for at least six weeks
Just walking. He didn't not mention PT. he addressed it specifically.
At that visit we would evaluate the need for PT
I am flummoxed at the range of aftercare.
 

linette333

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I too am amazed at how advice differs. My OS is totally against any formal PT even after 6 weeks. He insists that normal activities suffice, as long as you push yourself.
 
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Tomorrow, I will be 3 weeks into my recovery. With posterior approach I have 3 more weeks of precautions.
I started working from home 2 weeks into my recovery, my work is all on the computer and my manger is happy I am back working since most of the group have taken time off and are vacationing. Work keeps the mind busy and pay the bills :)
Yesterday I have 2nd PT session, OS ordered total of 3 PT secession, this PT has worked with OS for years and is familiar with the program and the expectations. At first I did not understand the point of some the PT exercises, but it now makes sense to me and I am fully on board with the plan.
Besides the Lying Butterfly Stretch I have 3 new exercises, they are standing and balancing on one leg at a time, Heel and Toe rises on both feet while standing, and the most difficult being the surgery ankle-on-knee sitting position, this last exercise gradually opens the hip and goal is for you to reach the surgery foot by end of 6 week recovery period.
At the 2nd PT session I also transitioned to the cane, now using the cane exclusively. Past few day I have also been able to sleep for several hours at a time on good side with pillow between the legs. Being able to side-sleep is such a relief.
I stopped taking pain meds 1 week after surgery and have not had to deal with all its side-effects.
Almost no swelling and bruising left. The incision area feels hard and lumpy, but PT says I can massage the area with lotion to loosen the underlying tissue and accelerate the healing process.
Overall I am very satisfied with progress.
 

julesglass

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Well, look at you go @SelfHelp! It all sounds great with your PT. I'm very apprehensive about the PT yet. Still got soreness from bum down the outer thigh and my knee is complaining about bending. I will go, just not for a couple more weeks. Going to start walking tomorrow now that I'm using the cane 99 o/o of the time. Good luck with your new start!
 
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Well, I learned and changed my mind on PT along the way. Once I understood what the objective of these exercises were, that they are meant to increase the muscle strength around the hip so I can walk without the cane and increase flexibility so I can eventually reach my operated foot, then I was on board with the PT exercises.
 
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Layla

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Hi @SelfHelp
I hope you're having a good week. PT is personal. Some like it and thrive, others don't.
Some surgeon's favor it, others don't. You need to do what's right for you.
Wishing you all the best and a happy Thursday!
 

Mojo333

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Still early days.
Big one month Hipversary!!! Tomorrow.
Just take the PT slow and make sure its helping and you will do splendid!

Onward and upward!
 

Layla

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Happy One Month Anniversary!
I hope you've enjoyed a lovely week so far.
Drop us an update, we'd love to hear how you're doing.
Best wishes as you continue the journey! :walking:
@SelfHelp
 
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Thanks you @Layla and @Mojo333 , today is my 5th week of recovery, had my surgery exactly 5 weeks ago today. One more week of recovery and I expect to be cleared by surgeon. I am still observing the restrictions but not like I did on day 1. The hip and overall the leg just feels stronger, and I am more confident putting weight on it. For past week I have been walking around the house and backyard without the cane, some days around 2K - 3K steps. On day I push myself I can feel pain in the thigh muscle and my knee. But I can see improvements every day. I am doing my hip stretches and exercises which has helped the recovery.
In retrospect, some of my worries about the involved risks were overblown. But I am glad I researched the procedure and learnt about those risks, along the way I learnt from bonesamrt how to choose the best surgeon and staff. I believe that having the best surgeon and staff made all the difference.
 
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julesglass

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Morning @SelfHelp. Sounds like you are doing well in your recovery. You're walking without cane much more than I. I still have soreness in thigh and knee, not nearly as much as a week ago though. I've been working on going down stairs one step at a time. I've been working on going up stairs one step at a time, however that is tougher so not as much. 6 weeks here we coming!
:egypdance:
 

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