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THR still sore after 6 weeks.

Andyinhull

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Hi all, I'm 9 days post op had a left total hip replacement due to AVN. I have to have my right hip done hopefully in about 2 months time. I was discharged same day from hospital and all has gone really well so far . I am just a bit concerned about the swelling in my ankle and leg. Is this normal? It's not painful just really quite swollen, should I be walking on the operated leg yet? Thanks in advance.
 

Spex10

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Gosh. I can't even imagine having been discharged on day one! I was encouraged to be walking on the operated leg from the start. Movement should help in reducing swelling and, of course, icing and elevating.
Were you given a walking frame, sticks or crutches? I had a frame for a couple of days then two sticks. I soon went down to one then was managing round the house without a stick in about a week. I was lucky -no swelling at all.
Hope you feel better soon.
 
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Andyinhull

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Hi thanks for the reply. I have been waking on crutches, I am only using a crutch on my non-operated side, the trouble is the non-operated side is so painful because that needs doing, I guess most people have one good side to rely on after surgery but my right side is more painful than my left, guess I'll just soldier on until right side is done and hopefully left side will be strong by then making the second op easier to recover from.
 

Jaycey

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@Andyinhull Welcome to BoneSmart and the other side of surgery. What was the exact date of your op? I'll make a signature for you and get you added to our September group.

Swelling in the ankle and leg are totally normal. Lots of trauma during the procedure and then they pump you with fluids before, during and after the op. Ice your leg and ankle and elevate to get this under control (see guidance below).

Hip Recovery: The Guidelines
We are all different, as are the approaches to this recovery and rehab. The key is, “Find what works for YOU.“ Your doctor(s), physiotherapist(s) and BoneSmart are here to help. But you have the final decision as to what approach you use.

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 this BoneSmart philosophy for sensible post op therapy
5. Here is a week-by-week guide for Activity progression for THRs
6. Access 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 that each member have only one recovery thread. This policy makes it easier to go back and review history before providing advice.
 
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Andyinhull

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Hi I had my op on the 12/09/2021. Thanks for the add.
 

Layla

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Hello and Welcome to BoneSmart. Thanks for joining us!
Hopefully you’re icing often and finding some relief. An added bonus, it helps with pain too. I’m sorry you have to deal with your right deteriorating hip as you begin healing. Hopefully you’ll be able to schedule your next surgery soon, allowing one recovery to roll into the other. Then you’ll have two brand new hips, lose the pain and recapture life as you knew it.
Wishing you comfort as you begin the journey.
@Andyinhull
 
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Andyinhull

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I'm terrified about dislocating and getting an infection, I don't want to go through unnecessary surgery. I know fear is irrational. I'm going back to work tomorrow as I simply can't afford to live on sick pay which is another issue. luckily I do an office job and can WFH, as long as I get up and walk about often I figure I'll be okay.
 

Layla

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Hello @Andyinhull
Try not to worry as dislocation and infection are rare and stress isn’t good for anything, especially now since you just experienced the controlled trauma of surgery.
Returning to work at only ten days post op is not advised, nor encouraged. It is way too ambitious this early out. We advise twelve weeks off with a phased return, but understand that’s not always doable. However, I can’t imagine anyone expecting you to return to work a mere eleven days post op from major surgery. Please read this article and hopefully it will help explain why this is too early -
Have a great Wednesday. :)
 
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Andyinhull

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is it normal to feel exhausted 2 weeks after hip replacement? I'm so tired most of the time.
 

djklaugh

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@Andyinhull YES it is totally normal to feel tired 2 weeks after joint replacement. Your body has a lot of healing to do - both at skin level and within! You can expect this fatigue and what I call "nap attacks" to last for several months - though everyone's different and your experience may vary.
 

Jaycey

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@Andyinhull Totally normal to feel very tired post op - it's called Energy Drain and it's impossible to fight it. Your body is recovering from major trauma. All your energy is focusing on healing. This is why it is important to stay away from work for as long as you can.
 

JulieH

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Hi Andy, just saw your endo about going back to work. I had my THR on 19 August and went back to work on 6 Sept. Like you I have an office job, can work from home and needed to return to full pay. I had 4 days holiday left unallocated and have used them 1 a week - last one coming up this Wed. Other than that I've done full days. I've been really glad to have the Wednesdays, and have mainly lay on the settee on those days. I needed to add a cushion to my office seat as it pushed on bruising at the side, and keep adjusting whether I'm sat forward or back. I've also gone up to the children's room a couple of times to work on the recliner in their room.

I'd have preferred to be off but to be honest, it hasn't been so bad. I'm lucky though while I get sore, I haven't had real pain or swelling (maybe I'm enjoying the lying on the settee a bit much).

There pros and cons, in my mind. On the one hand it stops me thinking about it all the time, on the other hand I think sometimes other people do think you're then more able than you are. If ensure work are aware that returning after 2 weeks is highly unusual, and be honest with how you find it. I'm now getting asked when will I be back in the office, and will that be full time...
 
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Andyinhull

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Thanks for the reply, I too have put a cushion on my office chair for a bit of extra comfort, I find if I get up every hour and move around it's not so bad, I don't think I'll be back in the office until after Xmas as I have to have my other hip done, but work seem okay with that. To be honest I'd rather be in the office WFH can suck sometimes, but at least you can have the odd cheeky lay down and answer emails on your phone!
 
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Andyinhull

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Hi, had my hip surgery 6 weeks ago, the hip itself feels great and all the groin and butt pain has gone! However the site of my incision is still itchy and sore, it looks to have healed okay apart from one small area towards the bottom of the incision, this is a bit scabby, it doesn't feel infected or hot to the touch, is this normal? TIA.
 

Jaycey

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is this normal?
Totally normal - you are only 6 weeks into a process that can take 1 year or longer. Relax, let that hip heal. Ice and elevate - there is internal swelling. Patience prescribed in large doses!

You will notice that I merged your newest post with your original recovery thread. For several reasons, we prefer that you only have one recovery thread:
  • That way, we have all your information in one place. This makes it easier to go back and review your history before providing advice.
  • If you keep starting new threads, you miss the posts and advice others have left for you in the old threads, and some information may be unnecessarily repeated
  • Having only one thread will act as a diary of your progress that you can look back on.
Please post any updates, questions or concerns about your recovery here. If you prefer a different thread title, just post what you want and we will get it changed for you.

If you need an urgent response to a question, just tag a member of staff.

Many members bookmark their thread in their computer browser, so they can find it when they log on.
 
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Andyinhull

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thanks Jaycey for the reassurance! Have a meeting with my consultant on the 4th November to discuss my right hip which I hope to get done before Xmas.
 

Magsmom

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Hi @Andyinhull
I also had my left hip done - the day after yours. So Monday will be the official 6 weeks for me. I’m also getting the right one done in December.

Everything I’ve read on your posts so far lines up very similarly to my experience.
- my foot and ankle were also swollen in the beginning. Like, ugly swollen. Lots of ice and elevation really helped. I would also ice my knee (replacement in there also) and hip at the same time. So I made good use of the refreezable cold packs. I still ice every day after walking.

- I was also paranoid RE dislocating the new joint. So many people preached the 90 degree “rule” it started to make me nervous. But I saw my surgeon for 1st follow up yesterday and he’s given me the ok to start riding the bike, picking stuff up from a lower than waist level height. Said joint looks perfect and was very pleased w my progress so far. Whew!

I don’t know how you started working again so soon! I’m fortunate to have retired early so don’t have it to worry about that.

My first 2-3 weeks were really difficult - pain, not sleeping, swelling etc etc.

But at weeks 4 and 5, I made huge leaps in getting better. My dr had to remind me (again) that this process is not linear. I’m still going to have bad days but hopefully the good ones will outweigh the not so good.

I also watched the incision carefully. But believe me, if you had an infection, you’d likely know it quickly. I’m told to watch for redness, heat, oozing and fever. If you don’t have any of those you’re likely fine. But I check mine every day anyway!

Good luck! Do you have a date for your right hip? I’m waiting to find out (prob next eeek) but thought it would be funny if we were scheduled for the same day! (Btw, there’s no way I could’ve gone home same day. I was in for 2 nights but it was mostly to monitor some other stuff I have going on)
 
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Andyinhull

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Wow we really are on a par! I have a consultation with my specialist on the 25th of this month about my first operated one and then another one on the 4th of November about my right one, don't know why I can't just have one appointment with them been so close together but the NHS seem to like wasting money! I guess you're in the States so go through health insurance? You get what you're given on the NHS and in fairness I've been very lucky to have only been waiting about a year all in for treatment especially with Covid etc. I wish I was retired but I'm only 51 and have a fair way to go yet! anyway good luck with your procedure.
 

Magsmom

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FYI I just learned I’m scheduled for December 27. New Year, New Hips!

Yes I’m in the US and am using insurance. But since I retired early I was only able to keep coverage through my company for 18 mos. That’s long over. Now, I have to purchase an individual policy and it’s ridiculously $$. But I live in New Jersey and my ortho and other specialists are in NYC where we lived for 30+ years. There’s only 1 plan in NJ that provides any type of coverage for doctors outside the State. So, theyve got me until I turn 65 and can go on Medicare.
 

Layla

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Good luck with your appointment with the specialist tomorrow and also best wishes for your appointment next week on the 4th. Let us know if you get a date scheduled. We’ll add it to your signature and follow your journey to pain free! :yes!:
@Andyinhull
 

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