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Total Hip Replacement in 30's

Discussion in 'Hip Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by Sanj, Feb 13, 2018.

  1. Sanj

    Sanj new member
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    Hi,

    I just wanted to get any feedback from anybody who has had a similar issue and went ahead with the surgery. I was hoping to get any personal experience from someone who has had THR surgery in their 30's and the post operative issues they may have dealt with.

    I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in my right hip at the age of 33. At the age of 31, I felt a pinch in my right hip and I attributed it to a strained muscle from sports but it was always there when I walked or got up from a sitting position. I was still able to do my daily activities and I got accustomed to the pain. After my MRI, the osteopathic surgeon said that I have no cartilage in my right hip and he could not find any cause. He told me that I will need a THR and I was in shock for days. I am a very active person and this is the last thing I would have thought was wrong with me.

    The surgeon said that having surgery at a younger age would be beneficial in regards to recovery but I would most likely have to have it re-done at some point.

    Has anybody been through this surgery in their 30's? How was your recovery and activity level afterwards? Thanks.
     
  2. burtival

    burtival junior member

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    Hi @Sanj, I am 38 and had at THR end of November. Sounds like a similar story and I was in total shock to be told I had to have one. It has been the best thing I could have done. By 1st jan I was walking without any aids, by 8th jan I was working full time with a long commute, i’m back in the gym and swimming and feel amazing. I’m not going to do any high impact sports anymore to try to ensure my hip lasts as long as possible, but I thought it’s.l not the end of the world if I need another one in 20 to 30 years as by then they will have probably invented something else that will see me through! Happy to answer any other questions you have. I’ll be 3 months post op in a couple of weeks and going to start playing tennis again.
     
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  3. Toddlermom

    Toddlermom senior

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    @Sanj My OS didn't give me the option of THR, at 37 and came out of my arthroscopy repair saying that we probably should have discussed it instead. Sure enough I was back in a few years for the THR, and I was back in pain. Wish that I had done it then!
     
  4. Jaycey

    Jaycey SUPER MODERATOR Moderator

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    @Sanj Welcome to BoneSmart! We have plenty of members your age and a whole lot younger who have had THR. There is no age discrimination for this surgery. And literally every recovery is different. We really can't predict how you will react to the procedure. I'll give you our guidelines so you can get an idea of what this recovery entails.
    This is very old school thinking. Here's a couple of articles from our Library that might be useful.
    Hips that have lasted 32, 40, 41 and 45 years
    67½ year old - the THRs, not the patient!

    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

    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.
     
  5. ketchup

    ketchup junior member

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    @Sanj - I haven't had mine done yet, but they both have to go. I'm 29. The OS I am using supposedly tends to lean towards talking younger patients out of replacing their hips unless it is a last resort situation, but unfortunately, I'm last resort. I explicitly told them that I wanted both hips gone, and gone ASAP. I've been living in horrific pain for far too long at this point, and want a quality of life back.

    I also told them I understand I will most likely need revisions in the future, and that I was okay with that. To that, they did ask if I was okay with possibly being unable to get a revision past a certain point. When I asked them to explain, they basically said that there could come a time in which there just isn't enough bone left to work with. I wouldn't be wheel chair bound or anything, but walking would require dragging my leg as I'd no longer have a functioning hip.

    Did that sound scary? Sure. But you know what sounds scarier? Looking back on the "best years of my life" as I raise a young family, and knowing I could have had a surgery then to get out of pain but chose to wait until I was older with less responsibilities to get it done. Does that even make sense for you? When will it be more important to you in your life to be at your physical/active best? Those are questions I'd ask myself if I were you... it will tell you a lot about where your mind is regarding all of this. It is definitely life changing, and I get it.
     
  6. Sanj

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    Hi Guys,

    Thanks for all your responses, I really feel much better with this support and information. Burtival, your story definitely gives me more assurance about returning to normal and doing sports and activities as before. I think that is one of my biggest fears that I won't be able to do the same activities as before. I also have a fear of the surgery, I have never spent a night in the hospital, I have always considered myself super healthy and then Wham! this happened. I guess it's an OCD thing that a part of my body will be gone and replaced with something else. For the past few years, it has been a mental struggle but I finally feel that I am getting over it.

    Every year I see my OS and he asks me if I'm ready. Every year I say "not yet" and he can't believe I am still functioning as I am with little to no cartilage. Ketchup, I totally see your point about the "best years" passing by and being in pain all through this time. I think the main thing with me is that I can pretty much function at normal capacity although I take the odd naproxen after strenuous activity or work. If I was in severe pain, I think I would have had the surgery by now. I have a fear that my activities will be limited after the surgery or that I will have to be more cautious before I do things and now, I can do whatever I want as long as I take naproxen after.

    Another big concern for me is my occupation. I am a dentist with my own office which will either be shut down during my recovery or I will have to get someone to replace me temporarily. For the past few years, I have been building up my office to the point that I can take some time off to recover. The whole 4-6 weeks of recovery was advised by many people but my OS said that I should be quicker as I am young and healthy. Any feedback for recovery times? I think that is the biggest question mark in my head now. How will recovery be? How long will it be? Thanks in advance guys.
     
  7. ketchup

    ketchup junior member

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    @Sanj - I obviously don't have any advice/experience with recovery times, but there is a ton of info if you skim through posts and then the library on the forum.

    Honestly, the fact that you function at normal capacity most of the time and naproxen alone is all you require to take in order to deal with painful days, that kind of changes things for me. From everything I've heard across the board from all three OS I've seen, they really prefer to push off THRs in younger people until age 55 or until the pain of the joint becomes so severe that it is negatively impacting quality of life.

    Being young, it seems to be the pros/cons weigh more in favor of replacement being a con if we could feasibly hang on longer before replacement, primarily due to the increased likelihood of future revisions, lifestyle restrictions, needing to take time off of work, etc. --- basically everything you're concerned about. Is there a specific reason you're wanting to get it done now vs. waiting until you're older and/or your situation progresses to the point of it negatively impacting your daily life?
     
  8. Sanj

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    The main reason why I am wanting to possibly get the surgery done now is even though I can do most things normally, there is still some pain and I do have to be cautious and consciously think about being careful before I do it. I just want to stop second guessing myself before doing activities due the pain during and after. I just want to be normal again to a certain extent. Also, another issue is that since I am in Canada, private clinics don't perform THR. To have the surgery, I would have to go on a wait list and hopefully time it right with work. Not a huge issue but still annoying to deal with.
     
  9. Hippielife

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    :bicycle1:Most of us hippies have made the same decision based on many issues. Mainly getting our mobility back without all the hassles we had to endure prior to surgery. I am grateful to have THR option and you will be too. It is always nice to get back in life enjoy the things we love and basically back to business in no time. Really when you think about it, the surgery & the rehab process is a short amt of time compared to getting on with life. It's over in no time! Good luck!
     
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  10. rjenee

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    Hey @Sanj

    I’m 31 and 3 weeks post THR. Mild hip displaysia and a sports injury when I was 12 cause me to have significant osteoarthritis in my left hip. I was first told I needed a THR when I was 25(I had a second opinion so 2 OS gave me the same diagnosis). My reaction was very similar to yours. At the time I was super active, doing 4-5 high impact workouts per week. The only thing that was really impacting my quality of life at that point was a limp and some stiffness when attempting deep stretches. Because of this and my age I decided to put it off. About 4 years later I kind of hit a wall. My workouts went down to 2 low impacts per week. My limp became a full waddle because of the length disparity in my legs. I couldn’t stand for extended periods of time (necessary because I’m a teacher), and mall visits or running errands were almost torture. I had to use my hands to help physically move my leg sometimes. I decided last fall that it was significantly diminishing my quality of life, and scheduled my surgery for this summer .

    I’m still in the early days of my recovery but I already feel 200% better. My OS was able fix the length disparity in my legs. I’m already walking and using my leg more effectively than pre-surgery. The only pain I had post op was from the incision sight. I stop needing pain meds a week ago. They had me use a walker when I first left the hospital. It felt like it started to get in my away around week 1.5. I’m using a cane instead of the walker now to help me with balance and weight distribution until my hip is stronger. I’m able to walk about a 1/2 to 3/4 of a mile without getting tired (good for this stage of recovery). I ice my leg after a longer walk, so no soreness the next day.

    Although it got rough for a minute, I think not doing it as soon as I was told was a good decision for me. I would advise you to listen to your body. It will tell you when it’s ready. That and deciding that I would rather do it now than be miserable trying to wait until I’m “old enough” is what influenced my decision. I hope my story provides some perspective.

    Best wishes!
     
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  11. Dracia

    Dracia junior member

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    I'm 27 and one week post op LTHR! I could immediately tell I was "better" in terms of arthritic pain. I still have a long road to recovery ahead of me, but I'm very optimistic! I think it's definitely a hard decision to make when you're younger because revisions are almost a certainty at some point. However, having years of my youth pain free was incentive enough for me to get it done. :)

    Each persons recovery is different, but I'm not allowed to drive for 6-8 weeks. I'm a therapist and therefore have a very sedentary job, but won't be returning for 8 weeks minimum. It seems like people around me think that because I'm younger I should heal faster, but I'm not seeing that as the case. Being younger may help in terms of strength to move around with using your arms, but the hip needs to heal and that takes time no matter how old you are. :)
     
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  12. Jaycey

    Jaycey SUPER MODERATOR Moderator

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    If you read the articles I posted above you will get an idea of the time frame for recovery. There is no predicting how your body will react to the procedure. Some people sail through and others struggle. And as Dracia says, 8 weeks minimum to return to work. There is recovery from the trauma and energy drain (article above). Best to allow yourself enough time.
     
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  13. Sanj

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    Hey Rjenee,

    Thank you for that encouraging response, it has been a while since I have visited this forum and it was pleasant surprise to see a new response. I am still contemplating when to have my surgery done but all the positive outcomes I am hearing is building my confidence. I hope everything works out for you and the recovery goes well. I can't wait until I can share my post op story on this forum, hopefully soon!
     
  14. sequin98

    sequin98 graduate

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    Hello and welcome to the forum!!!

    Another factor with recovery is breaking all your bad gait habits, which takes longer to break them, the longer you had that 'limpy' gait.
    Being from Canada myself, I waited 3 years with all of the 'triage' and the like.
    I know that some Canadians have gone to Montana to have a THR done.
     
  15. Eman85

    Eman85 graduate

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    I sat in a surgeon's office right around my 30th birthday. I had been having hip problems and pain from about 12yo. SFCE in both hips, pins in L hip. Surgeon was honest and said they are making better parts and procedures every day. Keep in mind this was over 30 years ago. He took surgery seriously and didn't hesitate to let me know how major of a surgery it was, complications and the having to do it again possibly 2 more times if I stayed active and alive. I waited, the choice is yours.
     
  16. LuvDisney

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    I’m 41 and looking at LTHR on 7/23 and RTHR on 8/22. I also had doubts on wether the timing was right but after years of on and off pain and not being able to work extra to pay the bills, go up or down stairs, walk around for extended periods of time I decided it was time to get things resolved. My R hip does not hurt near as much as my left and I could probably wait to have it done but I want to be able to live my life to the fullest and not have to worry about when is the right time for that one.
     
  17. Josephine

    Josephine FORUM ADMIN, NURSE DIRECTOR Administrator

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    Of course you do! That's the whole point of this surgery is it not?
    I think that might be a little over-optimistic. I know websites that promote the anterior approach as being a fast recovery but that's not something you can 100% rely upon. Returning to work after 4-6 weeks would be a big ask. Plus as a dentist, you risk getting to a point where you really cannot carry on any longer - what do you do then? You can't ask your patient to come back the next day, can you? I really do urge you to rethink this and plan for a 8-9 week return instead. and perhaps give yourself some breathing space by getting in a locum.

    We had a neurosurgeon on here a couple of years ago. He had a knee replacement but even so, he was feeling very pressured to return to work at 6 weeks and I talked him out of it. Later he came back and posted to me that he was so grateful I had urged him to change his plans as it was just about right and he knew then that he never would have coped with a return at 6 weeks.
     
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  18. Gypsy

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    Younger people are less likely to have chronic illnesses (e.g., diabetes or cardiovascular disease) that could increase risk for complications, but recovery is still recovery. Surgeons can unintentionally set the stage for expectations that don't match reality regarding recovery timelines.
     
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  19. taylor3

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    Hi
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2018
  20. Dan Zulu

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    There are a lot more of us under-40 patients getting hips than I would have expected. A little aftermarket hardwear is all good.
     
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