Author Topic: Please help, wife cannot move leg after surgery  (Read 3231 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.


  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 3
Please help, wife cannot move leg after surgery
« on: March 16, 2008, 03:20:01 AM »
I can really use some help and support. My wife went in for a resurfacing surgery for her left hip last Thursday morning, she came back to the Room after the surgery and was in a great deal of pain, severe pain. Around 7 at night she told the nurse her leg and foot was getting numb, she also stated she had a lot of pain in her butt area. The nurse paged the doctor on call Thursday night and he stated there was probably swelling against the siatic nerve and it should go away. At this point the only thing my wife could move was her toes, the next morning the surgions nurse came to the room to check my wife out, she was very worried because of the little movement in my wifes toe's, she could only move the toe's down, My wifes blood count had also dropped to 22, and now she was enimec( i am sure not spelled right) so they started my wife on blood transfusion, this was aroud 7:30 am on Friday. She stated she was going to page the doctor right away and he would be coming up. He finally showed up at 1:00 pm in the afternoon, he stated that he measured the hips and he was sure the siatic nerve didn't have any tension on it, he stated that he thought she was bleeding because of the low blood count, he ordered a cat scan and had her  rushed in, he said he had never had a complication like this before and that this was not normal, he said most of the people are walking the day of the surgery. The cat scan was completed and they found a large blood clot, he said about 2 to 3 units of blood. She was rushed back into surgery and the two softball size clot was removed. He said he found a artery and a large vain still bleeding. He said he fixed everything and cleaned everything out and he seen no nerve damage and that the nerve was loose and not strained.. She woke up after the surgery with little to no pain in the hip, good thing, the problem, she still has a lot on numbing in the leg and can still only move her toes, the leg seems like dead weight, she cannot bend the leg or control her ankle, the doctor said the nerve and muscles went thru alot of pressure and trama and that it will take a little time for it to go back to normal. He said nerves are unpredictable, could be a day or up to a couple months before thet return to normal, but he did say she would be fine. Saturday morning really no change, she can now move the ankle a little more in the upward position. My wife started her therapy today and I had to hold back my tears, her leg was basically just hanging there she had no control to turn her foot in or out or move the leg, after about a half hour of therapy she could barely pull her foot a few inches. I almost broke down and started crying right there. She is scared to death and so am I that she will not gain control back with her hip and foot. I am 44 years old and my wife is 45 and we have three children, I would really like to hear from anyone to see if they have had a similar experience or can shed some light on this situation. I could also use a little bit of support too, she is still in the hospital and this is killing me. Everytime I think of her I just want to break down and cry, my youngest son asked me yesterday what happens if it doesn't get better, I almost died trying to explain, I am normally a very strong person, but this is difficult, she was suppose to get her right hip done on April 2nd, but I don't need to tell you our thoughts on that now

Thanks in advance for any insight.


Pat Walter

  • Patricia Walter
  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3934
  • Owner/Webmaster of Surface Hippy
    • Surface Hippy about Hip Resurfacing
Re: Please help, wife cannot move leg after surgery
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2008, 08:37:29 AM »
Hi Jim

I am very sorry to hear about your wife's complications. 

Normally, as the doctor said, people are up and walking the next day usually on crutches.

I think it is a good thing he found the blood clots.  I have read of several people that almost died from blood clots after they got home from the hospital.  Fortunately, they went to the ER and were helped.

There have been a few people that I read about that have had nerve damage permanently and some that just had short term problems.  The people with short term problems had to deal with variations of numbness and problems for some months.    It is a very individual matter that no one can predict.

Who was your surgeon?  What approach did he/she use?  Anterior or Posterior?  Most surgeons use the posterior because their is usually less possible nerve damage.  There is much greater chance of nerve damge with the anterior.

Has her surgeon done a lot of hip resurfacing cases?

I ask because if you are using one of the newer surgeons with little hip resurfacing experience and your wife continues to have problems, you will probably want to eventally consult with a really experienced hip resurfacing surgeon.  They have experienced a much larger number of problems than the newer surgeons.

That is one reason I choose Dr. De Smet of Belgium. He has done over 3000 hip resurfacings.  I was older with a loss of bone density and wanted a really experienced surgeon.  Many people will argue the point, but I have read hundreds of personal stories over the last 3 years and read many medical studies, and the experience is very important in a difficult surgery like hip resurfacing.

Everyones legs seems like a dead tree stump when you first start to move and walk. You can't lift it yourself or hardly move it much.  That is pretty normal.  Some can do better than others.

I was able to lay on the bed with my opererated leg on the floor and lift it to the bed without help a few days after surgery.  I was told that was unusual.  I was 61 and my muscles were not in very good shape.  I had a very difficult time because my upper body strength was weak.  I used elbow crutches since I was in Belgium and they are much easier to use the under the arm crutches.

I think you just need to take each day - one at a time.  Some people have had very, very difficult recoveries.  Fortunately they are in the minority.  It sounds like your wife might be in that category.  I am really sorry to hear that.

Again, this sounds like a very unusual case - which of course doesn't help your wife.  The normal is to walk the day after surgery and be released from the hospital 2 1/2 days after surgery.

I think we will all keep your wife in our thoughts and prayers.  Please keep in touch with us. 

Webmaster/Owner of Surface Hippy
3/15/06 LBHR De Smet


  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 149
Re: Please help, wife cannot move leg after surgery
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2008, 10:24:23 AM »
Hi Jim,

I am SO sorry to hear of the problems your wife has had and is having.  Unfortunately with any major surgery, there is always the risk of complications.  It is a really good thing that they found the blood clots and were able to remove them.  As you are probably aware, blood clots can be life threatening, so please do look on the positive side.  Your wife is still here and even though she is having some troubles, she is now pain free and on the road to improving, but she is still here.  Nerve damage is probably due to the clots and is in most cases temporary.  This can happen with ANY major surgery. 

Please know that I am NO medical expert, I have just spoken to many patients over the past three years, and a couple of them had temporary nerve damage.  One was a fireman and had a real burning sensation and a lot of pain and numbness in the operated leg.  It takes a lot more hard work and rehab to gain back normal use.  The good news is, he is back to full duty at his firestation as if nothing ever happened.  His recovery just took longer than most.  It is extremely rare for it to be permanent nerve damage.  Hang in there, feel free to email me offline for any support you need as well.  I will also send you a private email.  Your wife is lucky that she has you here.  What a wonderful husband you are.  Keep the kids spirits up, this will all pass.  I always try to be a real optimist and look at things on the positive side.  There is truth to the power of positive thinking.  So, again, please keep in mind that blood clots can be life threatening, so you are blessed that they caught that and she is on the mend.

Sometimes it is harder on those around the patient because they tend to feel helpless.  Feel free to fall apart on the message board and reach out for support.  I have helped a lot of patients offline go through some really difficult times.  Feel free to email me any time offline as well.

My best to you, your wife and family,




Recent Posts

Donate Thru Pay Pal

Surface Hippy Gear


Patricia Walter- Piano Player Pat

Powered by EzPortal