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[HEMI-ARTHROPLASTY] STILL FRUSTRATED after 6mos postop

JamieCat

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My surgery was March 6 this year. I was previously doing t'ai chai so my legs/arms are still strong. Just started doing it again.

I also started to drive and begin doing what I was doing before surgery. My main issue is I overdo - had car inspected, went for hair cut, went grocery shopping this past Wednesday and got home at 11pm, exhausted and achy. Resulted in sleeping almost all Thursday and got up late today. I had to ice upper thigh area and baby my walking using walker rather than cane or free walking (in house).

Anyone have suggestions on how not to overdo? I seem to be taking 3 steps forward but then same back. I'm impatient as I didn't think it would take forever to move forward!!!
 

Layla

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Hi JamieCat,
Welcome to BoneSmart! Thanks for joining us.
I'm not sure of exactly what you're doing activity wise that's causing exhaustion. Getting a haircut and having the car inspected isn't really being active, but grocery shopping can be somewhat. Your body is still recovering from a major surgery, but your explanation of the activity you're engaging in doesn't correlate with sleeping the day away and feeling the need to revert back to a walker or cane.

The only advice I can offer is to try really hard to stop overdoing. If you've established a pattern of overdoing it, recovering, then overdoing it again, you're only option is to discipline yourself to stay on a more even keel or you'll continue on the same trajectory.

Let's ask the forum nurse @Josephine to check in and see what she may have to offer. I've tagged her for you. I'll leave the Recovery Guidelines of which some may still pertain even at four months post op. Please check back periodically in case Josephine has questions.

Wishing you comfort, restorative rest and healing.

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
elevate
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

Pain management and the pain chart
Healing: how long does it take?
Chart representation of THR recovery

Dislocation risk and 90 degree rule
Energy drain for THRs
Pain and swelling control: elevation is the key

Post op blues is a reality - be prepared for it

Myth busting: on getting addicted to pain meds
Sleep deprivation is pretty much inevitable - but what causes it?

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 the at each member have only one recovery thread. This policy makes it easier to go back and review history before providing advice. @JamieCat
 

Layla

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Hi again,
Will you please leave which hip was involved and the exact name of the procedure?
The information will be applied as your signature.
Thank you in advance :)
@JamieCat
 

Josephine

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Did you have a fractured hip? Was that why you had surgery?
 
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JamieCat

JamieCat

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I fractured the ball part of left hip and left femur. Emergency surgery was preformed in which a new ball was put in as well and a metal post for support of the femur. I'm not sure what the name of the metal post is called but according to xrays I viewed, it goes approximately halfway down from top of femur (where break was) to half way down top thigh part of left leg.

I don't know the actual name for this type of surgery.

The surgical incision was done towards the back part (close to left buttock) so it would be "Posterior"?

This all happened due to a freaky fall. I was pushing off back of living room couch. Wasn't aware of how strong the push was (was told later on by physician that my arms and legs were extremely strong and powerful due to doing T'ai Chi, Yoga, and low-impact areobics I did for past 5 yrs.) ...next thing I knew, I was falling backwards very fast (seemed to be at speed of lightening at time) and had to make a split second decision - fall backwards and possibly injure back, spine, and head or go to the left and fall and my left side. Chose falling on left side.

I remember hitting ground (living room has a cement floor with very low pile rug over it) and bouncing about 3 times before I finally settled. Once movement stopped, I checked to be sure could move fingers, toes, neck etc. Then I tried to get up - didn't work. Had to do a pushing side stroke with my arms to get to table/chair. Was able to pull myself up to get on chair to call ambulance.

I was told it was actually a good thing my arms/legs were strong cause otherwise I wouldn't have been able to get to the chair or get my body on it. I would still have been where I was in a big heap :)

PS: I sincerely hope I'm doing this correctly to answer both Layla and Josephine's questions. I'm still very new to this and not sure about replies, etc. Please forgive if I've done so incorrectly.
 

Jaycey

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I sincerely hope I'm doing this correctly to answer both Layla and Josephine's questions.
You are doing just fine! I am sure Josephine will be along soon to comment.
 

Josephine

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What you fractured was the hip joint - the femoral neck and head.
The surgery you had was a total hip replacement.


Here are some pictures to show what it was all about

fractured neck of femur.JPG
THR (2).jpg
 
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JamieCat

JamieCat

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Please forgive my lack of knowledge regarding THR. I was under the impression that a THR included both parts of the hip? I only had the ball part replaced (not the socket part) as well as the repair of upper part of femur. Would you be able to explain how only part of hip being repaired is considered a THR?

I'm very blessed by the responses, support, and information I've received since I joined BoneSmart. There are some issues I need to get resolved due to what I was told at 6 weeks by my Orthopedic Surgeon. I had a surgeon that seemed to think I no longer needed to have further followup visits. I was told this was based on x-rays (which looked fine) as well as statistics and research which is what this surgeon bases her treatment plan on (rather than the person themself??).

I was told I could do whatever I felt like doing, i.e. bending, driving, no longer needing to follow the initial protocol, etc. So not having previous experience, I followed what I was told. When I called , asking to speak to surgeon with questions and/or concerns about what I could expect with healing process in future, my answers were given by secretary! Like playing telephone game. This has resulted in having to deal with swelling of feet, legs, and inflammation around the surgical incision area, etc.

I've had low grade fevers as well (only other time I ever ran fever was related to wisdom teeth. My children/g-children same way. My normal temp is between 97.2 - 97-6. I've periodically had fever spikes in 98's and low 99's. This would be considered fever for me.

I was concerned about some type of inflammation. I spoke with my Primary Dr who did previous training in Orthopedic Surgery. She ran a barage of tests to rule out blood clots, circulation up/down legs, as well as more x-rays of hip, pelvis, leg, and chest (rule out pneumonia). All came back OK which made me feel so much better.

Now, at over 4 months, I think there is some bursitis acting up. It is difficult to truly determine what is causing the issues of inflammation etc., as I also have Fibromyalgia . I decided to retain a different Ortho Dr (recommended by friend who had two THP and was extremely happy with the personal care received by her Dr) but before I see this Dr, I called my Orthopedic Surgeon and insisted I be seen by the Dr herself to review what has been going on, not her secretary or walk-in clinic etc. I have appt this Tue 7/16/19.

PS: Once again, if I am replying in the wrong place (still trying to find my way around the block) Please forgive me and let me know. I appreciate any and all help/ suggestions, etc. you are able to send my wayl My kitty says "Meow"
 

Josephine

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You are replying perfectly. Don't worry about it.

I was under the impression that a THR included both parts of the hip? I only had the ball part replaced (not the socket part) Would you be able to explain how only part of hip being repaired is considered a THR?
Yes, I got that muddled, my fault entirely. What you had was evidently a hemi-arthroplasty like this

hemiarthroplasty.JPG
 
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JamieCat

JamieCat

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Thanks for your help. Seeing Orthopedic surgeon tomorrow (who doesn't really care about people once she's opened/closed them up and 6wks comes around). I can't prove negligence due to poor communication and incorrect info (at least the info they gave me, based on studies and research, rather than my recovery at a week, a month, etc., down road).

I plan to let her know if I have a question or concern, I expect her to discuss with me and not base her reply or treatment on something else not even related to me. Does anyone out there know if this happens often? I wasn't in a situation where I was able to research doctors and choose one since it was an emergency situation. However I don't think people should be thrown out in the dark by a surgeon because they were on call at time so did surgery!!! Appreciate some input from others if they had same problem. meow meow
 

Jaycey

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Does anyone out there know if this happens often?
I think lack of available information both pre and post op is the main reason this site exists. Many surgeons assume the patient has information but in many cases they don't. Take your list of questions to your appointment and go through the list one by one. Write down the answers while you are there so that you can refer back to the list. If the surgeon is not willing to answer your questions ask them where you should go to get the answers. You are paying for care - this is part of it.
 

Josephine

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I think lack of available information both pre and post op is the main reason this site exists.
Exactly so.
who doesn't really care about people once she's opened/ closed them up and 6wks comes around
That's quite common so don't worry. And also don't expect too much from your surgeon now you know that's how she works!
 
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JamieCat

JamieCat

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Since I'm now having issues which are extremely frustrating, thought I'd give a 6mos post op update. I seemed to be doing fine and moving along as I should at this point in my recovery. My balance is great but I'm still being careful, utilizing my support equipment, i.e. cane, super walker (one with covered basket and brakes etc.) when needed while doing things i.e. shopping, laundry, various activities, etc. I've been faithful to do my recovery exercises and even started to do my t'ai chi exercises again (I modified certain moves to accommodate my physical situation.) Then BOOMSY...as of a few days ago...I began to have swelling and pain (not acute but noticeable) around my LEFT UPPER FEMUR. My upper left thigh area and anterior buttock area below the surgical scar is slightly swollen again and tender to touch. In addition, I don't seem to have strength in my legs I had previously post op?? AND even up until few weeks ago.!! Before my surgery I was extremely strong in my legs and arms (due to doing t'ai chi and yoga for 5yrs). Now suddenly, I tire easily when walking on my legs?? Don't understand why this is happening? I'm sure there have been times recently when I overdid it...too much activity at once (who hasn't done this when feeling great??) but this still doesn't seem OK to me?? I'm not able to afford outpatient Physical Therapy and don't want to have anything further to do with the Dr. who did my surgery (... Like a rancher who brands their cattle, get ready, brand, and then bye bye...can't be bothered taking time cause $$ is the focus, not patient who is already branded.) I would greatly appreciate any insight, suggestions, etc. from anyone who has previously had this type of surgery (Repair BALL part of HIP and FEMUR) or who is familiar with and has knowledge of this type of injury/surgery. Thanks in advance and much appreciate any help available.
 

alexthecat

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I'm sorry you're still having issues with that hip, after all this time.
I've been faithful to do my recovery exercises and even started to do my t'ai chi exercises again (I modified certain moves to accommodate my physical situation.)
Can you expand on this a little? What specific recovery exercises and tai chi exercises that you are doing? How many of them are you doing and how frequently?




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Jamie

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@JamieCat ... you may notice that I have merged your latest thread with your original recovery thread. We prefer that members keep all their recovery information in a single thread so that we easily have access to your entire history before providing advice to you. So please continue to post any questions, concerns or comments here regarding your March 6th surgery.

I agree with Alex that we need to first find out exactly what your normal activity routine looks like. So if you could tell us a bit more about that it will help.

I agree that you need to find a different surgeon. I can help you with that if you like. You also can check out our BoneSmart Joint Surgeon Locator (tab at the top of the page) to find potential surgeons near you. If you would like my assistance, just tag me. To do that you type the "at" sign in front of my username like this: @Jamie That way I'll see your post quickly. I'll need to know the name of the surgeon who did your hip so that I can stay clear of their practice and hospital. When seeking a second opinion it's always important to get a totally independent viewpoint and that can't be done when doctors know each other through work or social activities.
 

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