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THR Two New Hips in Six Weeks

JoeKnows

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Huh - I have a hard enough time explaining AVN when people say, "you're way too young for a hip replacement!" As if I didn't know that... I'd be annoyed if I had to explain two conditions, haha.
 

1stSurgery

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Oh @Alitm as you may recall it was a very hard awakening when hip #2 gave way but in hindsight I should've foreseen the possibility. I can tell you exactly the timeframe. I did great for the first 4 wks after lefty was replaced and was upping my walking every few days, going Walker to cane to no cane, walking at the track, slow and easy, not too much. Then about a month in I couldn't add any more time on the walks and very soon thereafter I had to cut back time, then cut back drastically. From 15 mins to 10 to 5 and eventually..no walks. It was a fast decline. What I failed to consider was, ....and talk about poundage and pressure....all the added pressure that the healing of lefty -not yet fully weight bearing - was putting on poor righty, already very rickety. Excuse my poor writing, took oxy 1/2 hr ago, try to decode! By mid July I was feeling bad and then in early August all it took was one bend to pet my cat and the right just went beserk! Put me into bed, awful groin pain. Now having seen that femoral head in post op video...I get it. But the morale is, the decline can be super swift when the forgotten hip is trying to handle the recovery of the surgical one. It's double time pressure. I wish I'd known to expect that and think OS's should warn patients, psychologically it's devastating. I was planning a winter number 2 THR, Nov / Dec. as it ended up I was begging for ASAP, early sept and took first cancellation opening. Don't hesitate.
 
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EL11

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@EL11 - So you had AVN / osteonecrosis in one hip and arthritis in the other? Did I read that right? Sounds like you basically got the sampler platter of hip problems - just left out dysplasia, haha.
I had arthritis in both hips, worse in the right. He only mentioned what I'm now assuming was osteonecrosis in my left hip (because I remembered something with "necro" in it) when I asked him why the left hip would hurt more if it was less arthritic.
 

Alitm

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@ELL61 @1stSurgery @lovesstars @JoeKnows My left hip kicked up first, rightie joined in and led the charge. Two weeks before surgery, leftie started catching all the time. Had rightie done and I think the better choice is to get on with leftie ASAP before she bails!

Will let you know what OS has to say tomorrow. Fingers crossed OK?!
 

Alitm

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@Thank you! I still have something soft tissue chatting to me in my right butt from my three minute tour (there and back) on the driveway on Saturday. Icing the living daylights out of it. Hoping the OS can shed some light on that. I suspect it is the ligament on the psoas (sp) that was detached and reattached during the surgery that is grumbling. How did I manage to get to lurking outside the ODIC so quickly! Little and often strolls around the house seem to be a better option for now. Thinking of you all who have mandatory stairs:scaredycat: Wishing you a comfortable and well medicated night :)
 

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I had this revelation when doing so, that tied into something we were talking about in another thread—about committing to participating in life by taking the step to have surgery. I suddenly realized, in a visceral way without thinking about it per se, how much of my "bandwidth" had been taken up by having this inflammation in my hips all the time.
@EL11 , I so agree with you on this!!! My world had been diminishing more and more as the pain increased and my ability to walk decreased. I had basically opted out of life once the pain got too bad - was actually at the point of giving up! Once I found the right group of doctors and actually got a diagnosis (instead of admonitions to "lose weight and [I'll] be fine"), and the shock of realizing that it wasn't my fault that this "hip melt" had happened had worn off and, finally, acceptance that I was going to need new hips settled in.... well, at that point, I was already on my way to turning the corner on things. While I still am not participating in life as I once did (when I endeavored to be a social butterfly despite being a major Introvert) and, as I mentioned on my own thread, am dealing with "the blues", I realize that the surgeries were a huge step in recommitting to being present and taking part in life. It's wonderful to know that many of my fellow BoneSmarties are of the same mindset!

"It's gone", indeed; dear Lski; it... is... gone! :yay:

Hope your healing is going well; oh, and, by the way, I LOL'd (in my office) at "if I come out of this an inch taller I get to add another 3-4 pounds, right?! Yes!!"

:yes!::heehee:

Can I also add that you're humour and wisdom are an inspiration, @EL11 ? Thanks for being you!
 
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EL11

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Great post, @ladylorn, and thank you :yes:

A new physical therapist just came by. He watched me walk with one crutch and climb the stairs, a little awkward readjusting to doing it on the new side. I'm afraid I cut into my allotted time a little by taking a few minutes to feed Albert and change his box, but hey, while I was in the area, how could I not?! Anyway, the guy said I was doing great and that I should be on one crutch at this point. He suggested that I call ahead to the OS's office and tell them I'd be needing more oxycodone; speculated that since the doctor allowed me Advil last time, I might transition into having that midday instead of the prescription med when I was in tapering mode. I made notes of what I want to ask at my appointment, including a recommendation for outpatient pt.

I was talking about the pain management with two post-operative hips. He said something like, "Hey, let's face it, they ripped your leg in half!" which I found hilarious in a ghoulish way. I told him the other therapist had seen the operation and described it as carpentry, and he added, "Yeah, and more like framing than cabinet-making"; rattled off some numbers about how long muscle takes to heal, how long bones take; it was too much to absorb at the moment, but the general idea was that yes, the short-term healing was not done on my right hip when I had the left one done. I'm certainly not sorry though.

the decline can be super swift when the forgotten hip is trying to handle the recovery of the surgical one. It's double time pressure.
I told my bf yesterday that a lot of the interchanges on this forum involve people deciding how to time a second surgery. From my own experience, it's best not to wait, for the reason @1stSurgery states above. I had a similar experience. Everything was going along hunky-dory and then the still-arthritic side began to cave from the pressure. Every morning for several days now, I marvel at how many hours I've been able to sleep. The week before the 2nd procedure, my left hip was waking me up every half hour.
 

1stSurgery

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I concur and think you made the right decision @EL11. I waited too long in all respects. From first diagnosis to first surgery to second surgery and even ironically when I came home from second surgery....I waited too long to take pain meds! I am the tortoise. :)
 

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@EL11 You are doing so well to be on one crutch now! You are inspiring me :yes!:! I can feel the OA kicking up in my left hip, as I cut back on the narcodic meds during the day. So annoying. Did your surgeon say which was your nastiest hip, the first or second one? I would imagine you had the one that hurt the most removed first, but the strain the post op from the first puts on the second non operated hip...well I'm getting the idea now! I had a busy day at my check up visit and x-rays etc. yesterday. Had two tramacet at bedtime, and another with more Tylenol at three thirty AM, but sleep, for the first time post op, eludes me, even in the recliner.

I am weaning off the walker today, tomorrow, however long it takes, onto crutches. I'll intersperse with the cane, which as of yesterday afternoon, felt too wobbly and will play it by ear. Surgeon suggested going straight to cane..but I'm not feeling it yet! When did you come off the walker and onto crutches. I would imagine second time around gives one more confidence to get on with things.

I think I'm going to go back to my private phsyio for gait and "assistive aids" assessment. My husband says he thinks I just need to try the crutches and cane, and we have the information on how to use them...I just feel lacking in the confidence to do so. DH has more faith in me that I do myself it appears! I also have disc issues in my lower back, so keeping my core and back muscles strong is key. Have you had similar issues with wanting to keep your upper body strong, or is just dealing with getting through the two surgery deal back to back more than enough! Sounds like you have been having good phsyio help.

I am now waiting to hear back from OS's office about my second date. He prefers to do 8 - 10 weeks for post op, but is booking into December. His secretary is "talking to the hospital", whatever that means. I suspect it has something to do with finding an OR for me so he can do my second hip in November, instead of December. Apparently, and I'm not sure how true this is, but orthopedic surgeons are the most unemployed doctors in Canada, simply because there isn't enough OR space available...so the infastructure isn't meeting the demand, although the surgeons are available! However I do know as fact, with my husband's surgery a year ago, he had to wait a really long time, as the OR designation, for the area of surgery he needed, was limited. I digress!

Wishing you a great continued healing day!
 
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EL11

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You are doing so well to be on one crutch now! You are inspiring me :yes!:! I can feel the OA kicking up in my left hip, as I cut back on the narcodic meds during the day. So annoying. Did your surgeon say which was your nastiest hip, the first or second one? I would imagine you had the one that hurt the most removed first, but the strain the post op from the first puts on the second non operated hip...well I'm getting the idea now! I had a busy day at my check up visit and x-rays etc. yesterday. Had two tramacet at bedtime, and another with more Tylenol at three thirty AM, but sleep, for the first time post op, eludes me, even in the recliner.
@Alitm I am doing well, and honestly I hesitated taking my first narcotic of the day, as I'm more just uncomfortable than in abject pain, but just took it anyway. The pt was reassuring about the fact that I am only at half the maximum and that he'd expect my OS to help me figure out a tapering plan when I see him Tuesday. The meds make it easier for me to nap, to do my exercises, and they chill me out somewhat in general of course.

The surgeon said the right hip was worse and that's the one I had done first, although the left one hurt worse, which he said was due to something @lovesstars tells me was osteonecrosis (I remembered the "necro" part); at the time he almost fluffed it off as a side issue; he said the joint replacement would fix it so in a way it's neither here nor there.

I have not found it hard to walk with crutches, but I can understand how having additional back issues would make you nervous. You want to make sure they're the right height. it feels as if using the crutches in itself is an upper body strength exercise. I have small dumbbells, just 2 lbs, sitting on the coffee table next to the couch where I sleep, and am going to ask if I can use them.

I hope that you get a date soon; I'm sure it'll be a load off your mind. Generally, it's great that your husband has faith in you, and he must know you well. I hope you can move on to your next step soon, at whatever pace feels right for you!
 

lovesstars

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In my post-op materials there was this paragraph which described when it was the right time to go to one crutch. It said: “when you can stand at the kitchen counter with your surgical leg on the outside, and hold onto the counter lightly, support yourself only on your surgical leg and have no pain or discomfort, then it is time to go to one crutch.”
 

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@EL11 That was interesting about what @lovesstars had to report about more post op pain with the osteonecrosis issue. OS hasn't mentioned anything like that yet to me. Just used the adjectives "horrible" and "terrible", which made me feel better, knowing what was going on wasn't in my mind. I have had a terrible GP here for the last six years, and she kept minimizing the hip issues. I deal directly with OS now. With urging from my physio, GP ordered an MRI on my lower back, which I had and got the results from prior to hip surgery. I can manage it with exercise, and have been really fit up until surgery. Even though I couldn't sit in a saddle, I could still do the chores. I did a lot of additional yoga and pilates, and even as I could no longer attend those, I did mat work at home with what I could do, along with core, back and upper body exercises from physio. Can't do any of that while recovering from hip #1, so very anxious to do #2 before my back goes down hill as well from lack of fitness! Ugh!

I have a pair of crutches, with full instructions on how to fit etc, so will work on that today. I am not going to wait until six weeks to see my physio, as I need him to give me things I can do for my core and back, without disrupting the healing in my hip. My physio says he will follow whatever protocol the OS lays out, but physio can "put out fires" re my back in the meantime and won't push the hip physio exercises until OS gives OK at six weeks post op. Hopefully shortly after that I'll be in the OR again getting rid of #2!

Interesting that you are couch sleeping! We sleep where we can find comfortable. I'm on the recliner! Our bed is so uncomfortable for some reason!
:flwrysmile:
 

Layla

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You're doing so well, EL11
It's hard to believe you had the two surgeries only 6 weeks apart.
You're coming up on two months already this weekend, for your first.
Time flies during recovery, more than one imagines going into it.
Just think, the holidays will be here before you know it and you'll be feeling so good! :happydance:
Happy for you....hugs!
@EL11
 
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EL11

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In my post-op materials there was this paragraph which described when it was the right time to go to one crutch. It said: “when you can stand at the kitchen counter with your surgical leg on the outside, and hold onto the counter lightly, support yourself only on your surgical leg and have no pain or discomfort, then it is time to go to one crutch.”
That is so helpful. I’d go to the kitchen island right now to make sure I’m not on one crutch “illegally,” but as I read your post I had just settled myself on the couch with wedge, ice and blankets, and Albert immediately joined me to curl up on my abdomen. I’ll try it later.

@Alitm , that is such a drag about your GP. Good thing you pushed through. Mine spends most of his time tapping on his laptop and taking notes, but for me personally he’s fine. He did call me personally to give me my initial x-ray results and said he’d be surprised if I didn’t need a hip replacement within 5 years. I was all resistant and tearful at the time, but my bf happened to be sitting nearby and after the call he said, didn’t [actress whose husband I had worked for] have a hip replacement? This a well-known woman with a busy career, who’s 10 years younger than I, so it did help disabuse me of the idea that I would suddenly be removed from normal life. Quite the contrary, I soon realized.

@Lalyla you are so sweet. It turned out to be 7 weeks, but still, I can hardly believe both surgeries are behind me. Hugs back.
 
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lovesstars

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@EL11 under no circumstances would I even begin to suggest that Albert be dislodged. It is much too chilly a morning! (Written from couch, on ice, wool sweater on top of me. Super hard to think of icing when I am already chilly!).

Actually started log in fireplace today. Yes, I was able to. No, didn’t break my 90-degree rule. Turns out I can be resourceful.

:bolt:
 

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