Laurie’s Hip Resurfacing with Dr. Gross 2008
September 20, 2008
My Hip Resurfacing Tips about surgery with Dr. Gross
Flying: I’m not sure if you are flying or driving. I flew from Charlotte to Phoenix with no issues one day after I was released. I had someone traveling with me, so I crutched my way through both airports (he took all the carry on bags). Everyone was very accomodating. The "exercise" actually felt good, especially after being on a 5 hour flight. Depending on how far you have to walk, however, your arms may get a little tired. I did alot of upper arm work outs before the surgery knowing I’d be on crutches for a week or so. I would agree, though, to be careful if there is any possibility of "pushing and shoving". You may want to consider a wheelchair as some people just don’t pay attention to anything around them. I bought a pillow to place in my seat so I would be sitting a bit higher and softer.
PolarCare: This will be one of your best friends. DO NOT leave without it. I still use it occasionally now 6 weeks later, especially if I have taken a longer walk and stressed the muscles a bit. I did not need it on the plane ride, but it was utilized as soon as I got home to help with the swelling from the flight.
Recliner: I have seen a number of posts regarding the zero gravity recliner. I think everyone has different needs and comfort levels. I never considered getting a recliner of any sort and never needed one, although it may be a nice investment in general. I had no problem sitting on a couch, but had to be careful getting up. I only had one hip done, so my good leg got well used getting up off the couch or out of chairs. Don’t laugh, but the best chair for me was actually one of my plastic outdoor patio chairs. I went back to work full time 7 days after surgery (I could work from home) and this chair provided the best height and overall comfort (especially in front of the computer) and the arms allowed me to easily push myself up to standing. I place a pad on it for added comfort.
Physical Fitness: I too got myself in the best possible shape (and weight) prior to surgery, and I believe this along with a positive attitude (and a fabulous surgeon) is why my recovery as been so good. I used a stationary bike, eliptical and swimming plus upper and lower body weight workouts 4-5 days per week. I know many folks posting just can’t do alot physically because of their pain, but if you can do anything, do it. I am now 6 weeks post op and started back at the gym with upper body workouts at week 2. I went to 1 crutch after the first week (it is easier with one than two) and went to a cane after 2 weeks. I used the gym track to walk with my cane (too hot in Phoenix to walk outdoors). At 4 weeks I was already walking 1.5 miles every day. But everyone must listen to their bodies and they should not compare themselves to others. You may read some posts where people are out skiing, dancing, cycling already at week 6. I feel like I’m in good shape, but I choose to stick to walking and will slowly add swimming, eliptical and biking in the next several weeks.
Here is another tip that I sort of fell upon. If you are staying at the Courtyard on the hospital campus, tell them you are having hip surgery and request one of the handicapped enabled rooms. My room was a couple doors from the elevator (nice not having to walk too far down the hallway), the shower was handicapped equipped which made it easier/safer getting in/out and they provided a raised toilet seat, for which I was grateful for. When I made reservations I told them I was having hip surgery with Dr. Gross (they of course were very familiar with him), so I assume the reservation agent put a note on my reservation. But others we met in the hotel who also had surgery had not been given this type of room, so I assume one should request it.
You will be in great hands with Dr. Gross, Lee Webb, his entire team and the staff at Providence. Top notch surgeon and all very experienced professionals. I couldn’t have had a better experience. I thought I was "nuts" having major surgery with a doctor that I only met over a 20 minute telephone conversation. This has been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made going with this team.
I too won’t say it’s a success until that 6 month mark and ultimately 3-4 years from now when more results are available, but if my recovery continues as it has been, I have no doubts I will be making the same comments as I am now. After 7 years of ongoing pain, I’m thrilled to have that gone and be back on the road to participating in activities I had to give up. Prior to surgery I slept maybe 2-3 hours at a time. I now sleep pretty much through the night. I had forgotten what that was like. And it still amazes me how pain free this whole experience has been for me as well. A couple of pain pills one day after release, none since.
November 8, 2008
I had surgery (uncemented) with Dr. Gross on Aug. 4th. I am extremely happy with my results to date. Please understand that everyone recovers differently and I know mine may not be average… with that said my recovery has been great. I had surgery on a Monday, out of the hospital by Wednesday midday, flew home to Arizona on Thursday. I crutched my way through 2 airports with no problem (I did have a friend who carried all my bags though – highly suggested). I had relatively low swelling and low to no pain after surgery and only took a couple of Tylenol the first couple of days. I was in good shape going into surgery (I worked out 4-5 days per week prior to surgery: elliptical, swimming, stationary bike and weights). I used crutches for a week, a cane for a week and was walking unassisted by week 3. I was back in the gym by week 2 (walking and upper body work).
I am now 3 months out, and just came back from a cruise. Determined not to gain weight, I walked 2-4 miles per day on the outside deck and was able to walk up the stairs (8 decks) with no problem.
I will take some credit for the good recovery, but personally I give Dr. Gross most of the credit. He is a talented surgeon. I do have a ways to go – since uncemented is so new only time will tell how successful it is but so far it has been a good recovery and I’m just sorry I waited so long.
December 20, 2009
BIOMET Cementless – 1 year anniversary and loving every minute of it!