BoneSmart® Hip / Knee Replacement Forum
Knee Replacement & Hip Replacement
Patient Advocacy & Online Community

THR Left, Anterior - also return to work questions

Discussion in 'Hip Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by laureleee, Aug 10, 2017.

  1. laureleee

    laureleee New Member
    Thread Starter

    Age:
    65
    Member Since:
    Aug 10, 2017
    Messages:
    4
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Country:
    United States United States
    Hi everyone,

    I just found this site and forums today - yay! I will probably have my surgery in September (don't yet have the date), and am very concerned about returning to work as soon as possible. I am 65, single, no kids, no family, and self-supporting and really need my income. I will be able to take maybe up to a month off, but really need to get back after that. Is that unrealistic with an anterior surgery?

    I keep mentally comparing it to when I broke both bones in my ankle 10 years ago. I had surgery on it, and was non-weight bearing for a full 8 weeks, but I did go back to work after a couple of weeks.

    Am I fooling myself? Thanks for your input.
    (haven't been able to save a signature yet, sorry!)
     
    Tags:
  2. Irish Joe

    Irish Joe Forum Advisor Staff Member Forum Advisor

    Age:
    52
    Member Since:
    Dec 13, 2016
    Messages:
    755
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Co Louth
    Country:
    Ireland Ireland
    Hi @laureleee.
    Have a look at the article below.
    A lot depends on your type of work.
    In any case 4wks is a bit adventurous. You would need to give yourself at least 6/8Wks and at that maybe only a phased return. Many people go back too quick and have to take extra time off because of overuse complications.
    http://bonesmart.org/forum/threads/phased-return-to-work.5696/
    Best Wishes.
    Joe......
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. laureleee

    laureleee New Member
    Thread Starter

    Age:
    65
    Member Since:
    Aug 10, 2017
    Messages:
    4
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Country:
    United States United States
    Thanks, Joe. The main reason I am hoping for such a quick return is because of the anterior (vs posterior or lateral) approach. Recovery is supposed to be significantly faster. Having said that, I do believe my employer would allow a phased return. And I have an office job. Mainly I don't know how I'm going to live without income, if I run out of my sick/vacation time. I have no savings, no family. Also, someone where I work just got fired because she was out for back surgery for almost a year. I CANNOT afford to lose my job at my age.
     
  4. Pumpkln

    Pumpkln Forum Advisor Staff Member Forum Advisor

    Age:
    66
    Member Since:
    Oct 27, 2011
    Messages:
    16,331
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    United States, West
    Country:
    United States United States
    laureleee,
    Welcome to BoneSmart, glad you joined us.
    There is a September Sapphire group you might want to join, you will find others having surgery in September.
    https://bonesmart.org/forum/threads...re-you-having-hip-surgery-in-september.42147/

    Post your surgery date in your next post, a moderator will add your date to your signature, Thanks!

    If you are at the stage where you are planning to have surgery but are looking for information so you can be better prepared for what is to come, take a look at these links:
    Recovery Aids: A comprehensive list for hospital and home
    Recliner Chairs: Things you need to know if buying one for your recovery
    Pre-Op Interviews: What's involved?
    Longevity of implants and revisions: How long will my new joint last?
    Score chart: how bad is my arthritic hip/knee

    And if you want to picture what your life might be like with a replaced hip, take a look at the posts and threads from other BoneSmarties provided in this link:
    Stories of amazing hip recoveries
     
    • Like Like x 2
  5. laureleee

    laureleee New Member
    Thread Starter

    Age:
    65
    Member Since:
    Aug 10, 2017
    Messages:
    4
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Country:
    United States United States
    Thank you, Chris. I have been told surgery should be within a month, but don't have a date yet. Will post it when I do.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  6. Hip Hip Hooray!

    Hip Hip Hooray! Post-Grad

    Age:
    52
    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2015
    Messages:
    1,532
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Santa Clarita, CA
    Country:
    United States United States
    I had the anterior technique. My surgeon, Joel Matta, told me I would be able to work after six weeks. He thought it would take me longer, "because I wasn't in very good shape". I was a professional dancer, so that shocked me. (that he thought I was out of shape.) I had no range of motion or flexibility before the surgery. I had an excellent recovery, but it did take time.

    Maybe you can find a way to work things out financially so that you have more of a cushion. Can you sell some stuff or reduce your expenses? I think you will feel much better when you go back to work, but the healing time is very important. Could you work from home? That way you could rest, ice, nap, etc...
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. Mojo333

    Mojo333 Forum Advisor Forum Advisor

    Age:
    54
    Member Since:
    Mar 8, 2017
    Messages:
    1,002
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Statesboro, GA
    Country:
    United States United States
    I agree with Hip Hip Hooray...plan for a buffer. We were debating on my thread the pros and construction of anterior vs posterior approach and long term prognosis...and some say better with posterior. I had bilateral THR anterior approach so no restrictions. No-one said I could not go back to work at any time as I was pretty good at 4 weeks. But that deep healing is EXTREMELY important and I think it is very easy to overdo when you feel so much better hip pain wise.
    I went back at 6 weeks but I work for a charity 6 hour day, 5 day with week...and found it was hard to back off on the days I needed to because once you're back you are back.
    At 3 months out I work and come home exhausted. Have to pay the bills, but have to do pretty much nothing when I get home.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Informative Informative x 1
  8. zauberflöte

    zauberflöte Don

    Age:
    65
    Member Since:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    4,671
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Country:
    United States United States
    welcome @laureleee ! I am your age, and just had anterior for my second (first was anterior also but 4 years ago). It really all does depend on what kind of job you have, and how you are doing afterwards. There is a significant amount of energy drain post-op, that can go on for months and attack you when you least expect it. Factor in such variables as your commute (do you drive? if it's your right hip, you'll have to be able to make that panic stop as well as be off narcotics. Do you public transit? Ay-yi-yi! Do you carpool? Fabulous!), how often you may and/or must move around at work, if you do shift work can you get a lock on a good shift for a few months, etc etc. Make those pro-and-con risk/benefit charts for yourself.

    I really think that the only major benefits to anterior during recovery are that you don't have to panic about whether you just broke the 90-degree short-term precaution (the fact is, it won't be very comfortable to bend that way for quite some time!), and you can if you have to use a low toilet, but you may not want to if you're like me! Our bodies don't heal any faster: human flesh is human flesh. Our incisions may or may not be shorter-- and we can see them, which I guess is an advantage! Otherwise, we are on the same footing with all the other approaches. Also we can sleep on our side, which some aren't allowed to do for some weeks. That's no guarantee it will be comfortable.

    I am making things sound very bleak, aren't I? But truly, I think you will come up with many options to choose from, to help yourself out during your return-to-work phase.

    Meantime, you'll find the nicest bunch of people on here that you could ever wish for! :smile2:
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. Jaycey

    Jaycey Moderator Staff Member

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Messages:
    21,837
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    UK
    Country:
    United Kingdom United Kingdom
    All marketing hype I am afraid. The major issue is the skill of your surgeon and how you personally react to the procedure. Each and every THR is different - even on the same person.

    Recovery from my LTHR too over one year. Recovery from my RTHR took a matter of weeks. I was back to work (phased return) at 6 weeks but had been working from home at 4 weeks. You just can't predict or push this recovery.

    And don't forget - there is the energy drain. It's real and you just can't fight it.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Mojo333

    Mojo333 Forum Advisor Forum Advisor

    Age:
    54
    Member Since:
    Mar 8, 2017
    Messages:
    1,002
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Statesboro, GA
    Country:
    United States United States
    Good job zauberflote .
    I think you thought of everything..but all I agree with. I do work less than 4 miles away. I can barely make a 45 min car ride without getting pretty uncomfortable.
    Bucket seats are no good
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  11. 1hipwonder

    1hipwonder New Member

    Age:
    48
    Member Since:
    Aug 5, 2017
    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Derbyshire
    Country:
    United Kingdom United Kingdom
    Hi Laureleee
    Like you, I've only recently joined this forum. I think everyone's thought of pretty much everything but I'd suggest exploring whether you can work from home. If you need to attend meetings, could you maybe dial in to them remotely or use Skype? Could your employer send work to you via email or maybe give you remote access to the systems and files you need to use? I'm fortunate in that I now have a job that pays sick pay but in the past I've had jobs that didn't so I know how worrying it can be when you need to get back to work quickly and I really empathise with that. Hope you manage to work something out with your employer, and good luck with your op!
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  12. laureleee

    laureleee New Member
    Thread Starter

    Age:
    65
    Member Since:
    Aug 10, 2017
    Messages:
    4
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Country:
    United States United States
    Thanks so much, everyone, for the info.

    I do work only 4 miles away (20 min in the morning, 30 min at night), drive myself, but am having the left hip done and my car has an automatic transmission, meaning I don't use my left leg at all while driving. So I figure as long as I can get in and out of the car, I can drive, at least for short distances. Of course I wouldn't attempt it until I'm off any narcotics, but I will also get off those as soon as possible, as they generally don't work well for me.

    I'm the Office Manager, but despite the title, I'm not a real manager - small company, do everything myself. I work at a very low key non-profit agency. Some of my stuff can be done remotely, but I do have to be physically in the office for much of it as well, and for some of those things I'm walking around. But I also think I might be able to shift some duties here and there for awhile.

    I'm also the de facto human resources person, and the IT liaison, and the assistant to the Executive Director, oh, and the office supplies person and the mail room, and facilities, etc, etc, etc. But frankly, a huge part of what I do is help prepare proposals, and that happens throughout the first quarter of the year, so by January, I should be doing well.

    I'm still pretty freaked out at the prospect of having to be at home for more than a month. I understand that it may be out of my control, but I have to hope and plan for the best. Gonna go and read some of the posts now!
     
    • Like Like x 2
  13. Jaycey

    Jaycey Moderator Staff Member

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Messages:
    21,837
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    UK
    Country:
    United Kingdom United Kingdom
    I can't take narcotics either and left the hospital after both THRs without them. There are other alternatives. Discuss your pain management plan with your surgeon.
     
    • Like Like x 4
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. Josephine

    Josephine NURSE DIRECTOR, BONESMART Staff Member Administrator

    Age:
    75
    Member Since:
    Jun 8, 2007
    Messages:
    71,337
    Location:
    The North
    Country:
    United Kingdom United Kingdom
    Somewhat. But you just cannot tell this side of the surgery. You can make all the plans you want to but you may find them all scuppered when it comes to it!
    I agree with Jaycey. Marketing hype. We've generally found that though people with other approaches do tend to have to slightly more protracted recovery, anteriors rarely bounce back quite as quickly as those 'selling' would have their patients believe!
    Chalk and cheese, my dear. Even having both ankles repaired does not in anyway compare to the impact of this very major surgery. And no innovative methods will make it less so.

    I've always lived by these maxims -
    Expect the best and you're bound to be disappointed.
    Expect the worst and you may come to have pleasant surprises!
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 2
  15. Mojo333

    Mojo333 Forum Advisor Forum Advisor

    Age:
    54
    Member Since:
    Mar 8, 2017
    Messages:
    1,002
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Statesboro, GA
    Country:
    United States United States
    Beginning to think there is something substantive in the concept that because there is somewhat less trauma that anterior hip replacement patients experience, they routinely expedite their activity in response to less restrictions and less short term recovery issues, therefore they negate their leg up ( no pun intended) on long term recovery and create extra complications due to the short-term improvements.
    I really think if you can embrace the bone smart philosophy while healing, anterior might actually be able to see even more positive results. It's going to take time to heal irregardless of the procedure
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2017
  16. zauberflöte

    zauberflöte Don

    Age:
    65
    Member Since:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    4,671
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Country:
    United States United States
    well spoken @Mojo333 !!!

    @laureleee oh my one of those jobs where you actually are indispensable! Maybe Mojo can help you brainstorm on how to replace yourself for phasing-in to work.

    I believe I also agree with what Mojo says about us anteriors rushing the goal because our first few days feel better than some others' might. I am currently in the middle of an apparently endless "no progress" period. Nothing has changed, of substance, in a week and a half. I sleep poorly, mornings are awful, pain level is stagnant (although an extra advil in each dose, which I take to supplement the tylenol, seemed to help last night), I have no more energy than I had last week and considerably less than I had the first 3-4 days....etc etc. And sitting, to put it bluntly, is a pain in the wazoo!

    All that said, none of us can predict what will be the path of our recovery. Yours might be stellar and comfortable, like Jaycey's second was!
     
    • Like Like x 4
  17. Me2

    Me2 Post-Grad

    Age:
    58
    Member Since:
    Jan 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,290
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    Country:
    United States United States
    Well, way back when, I put off having my hip surgeries because I just knew I could not take more than a few days off work. Finally, I had no choice. I started hearing about anterior, faster recoveries, no restrictions. Well, I found I recovered just fine . . . I had very little pain - actually after surgery was less than before! My surgery each time was on a Wednesday. My surgeon insisted on staying thru Friday. I came home Friday evening and was back to work on Monday. I have a child care in my home, had a terrific assistant teacher, great kids, understanding families. I was able to leave hospital with just a cane and kept forgetting it by the ten day mark. I worked a ten to twelve hour day with two fifteen minute to half hour breaks and slept mostly from the time I got off work til I needed to get up the next morning.

    My first left hip turned out super fantastic, still have problems with my right hip but the replacement part has been deemed perfection! Would I recommend doing these surgeries this way? Heck no! BUT I did not have the luxury or even the ability to take more time off. My business would have closed and I would be living under a bridge. I have since survived a back surgery and three shoulder on basically the same schedule. Again, I don't recommend it but will be happy to share tips on how you can. If there is no other way, you can still have the surgery done with fantastic, change your life results!
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  18. Lerwick8

    Lerwick8 Member

    Age:
    56
    Member Since:
    Jun 10, 2017
    Messages:
    145
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Country:
    United States United States
    @Me2 ..

    A bit confused by your post. Are you saying that you regret/don't recommend having the anterior procedure?
     
  19. Me2

    Me2 Post-Grad

    Age:
    58
    Member Since:
    Jan 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,290
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    Country:
    United States United States
    Oh no, I thoroughly feel the anterior procedure is/was fabulous for me! I was addressing the back to work question. When I had my anterior left and right thr, I was able to be back to work on Day 5 after both surgeries. I don't regret going back to work at Day 5 either -- I, like Lauralee, could not see anyway to take the recommended 6-12 weeks to recover. I avoided the surgery for several years with recovery time being a primary factor. I do recommend having the surgery even if you cannot guarantee how long you can stay away from work life.

    I am living proof that you can have an amazing recovery with minimum time off of work. In my case, five days and back to ten hour days with two short breaks (initially longer then weaned down to none). However, if you can take more time, by all means do it.
     
  20. Lerwick8

    Lerwick8 Member

    Age:
    56
    Member Since:
    Jun 10, 2017
    Messages:
    145
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Country:
    United States United States
    @Me2

    Thank you for the clarification. Much appreciated!

    Indeed, part of the reason I have taken so long to is the prospect of the lengthy recovery period and completely losing my ability to get around for a few months. I can relate to those apprehensions completely!
     

Share This Page

Loading...