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The Hip Talk Discussion Forum was hacked a few weeks back. It has taken me a long time to fix it. The only backup I could use was way back to April 2020. All members and posts up to that date are available. Anything newer has been lost. I am sorry, but that has been the only way to get things up and running again.

Author Topic: How long did you wait before deciding to go ahead with your operation?  (Read 1322 times)

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SteveT

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There seems to be so much variation on this site: some people could barely walk when they went it; others were a little more pre-emptive.

I've noticed some changes in the last few months: more frequent pain in certain motions, etc. but am by no means desperate.  I don't run anymore but I probably could; I'd just pay for it afterwards.  On my bad days  my hip smarts and I worry what it will be like if/when it gets worse but most of the time I can get around fine, climb stairs, chase my daughter (she's 2 so she doesn't move very fast yet).

I have the definite sense that this surgery is in my future but am, not eager to have a major surgery with the fairly long recovery afterwards.  I'd just love to know when people felt they needed to get it over with and whether they wished they'd done it earlier.  Or, if anyone has regrets about pulling the trigger sooner than they needed.

Thanks,

Steve

Caroline109

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Re: How long did you wait before deciding to go ahead with your operation?
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2009, 09:49:53 PM »
Hi STeve. I am new to this site but as someone who has had other joint replacement fairly recently (just over a year ago), I can say that when your life is interrupted terribly by your pain, when you just were sitting down in a chair doing nothing and get awful pain, when you can't do things you want to do without pain, when pain in the affected joint wakes you up, then it is time to seriously planning to have joint replacement surgery. There are people who put off having any kind of joint replacement because they're afraid of the recovery, the pain, the surgery itself, but I, for one, couldn't fathom spending any more time than I already did in such pain. I was ready to be out of pain!  I am not quite at that point yet with the hip but I am guessing I will be within the next year, maybe a year and a half at most.
I hope that helps!
Cortisone shot in my left hip, July 2009
Already have a partial knee replacement (Sept. 2008)
I also have ITP, a blood disorder that can make me bruise more easily than most people, though I have a fairly mild case of it.

Pat Walter

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Re: How long did you wait before deciding to go ahead with your operation?
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2009, 12:20:35 AM »
Hi Steve

You are correct that hip resurfacing is major surgery and should not be done until you are in pain that can not be controlled or very inactive.  Most surgeons will take you thru steps to solve you hip problems from giving you NSAIDS like Celebrex, then Steroid shots in the hip capsule, even PT or water exercises.  They will try every non-surgical approach possible before they suggest major sugery.  No expiernced hip resurfacing surgeon will perform a resurfacing if they don't feel it is necessary. A number of patients have been told to wait until their hip deteriorated more.  You do need to keep in touch with your doctor so he/she can watch your hip so the deterioration does not go so far that you miss the window of opportunity for resurfacing.

So unless you are in such pain that meds don't work, shots don't work, you can't sleep at night and can't do anything much but sit in a chair - you most likely are not ready for major sugery. It is something you need to talk to your surgeon about after he has examined you and your x-rays.  It is not a guessing game of trying to guess when.  You go thru the steps to reduce pain until there are no options left.

Good Luck.

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

muzza

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Re: How long did you wait before deciding to go ahead with your operation?
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2009, 02:46:30 AM »
I've had  both hips resurfaced. Both times, I got in sooner rather than later. I reached a stage with both where I wasn't in constant and unbearable pain but where I couldn't walk my dogs, I couldn't get around my favourite haunt , the racecourse without great discomfort and where I couldn't get in and out of my car without pain.

When this happened with my first hip, I didn't want to exist on debilitating drugs and I didn't want to get around on a stick before doing something about it.  After learning about resurfacing, I decided that's what I wanted. After going to several local GPs they gave me the line that surgery was a last resort, something to be avoided until you were at the end of your tether, in pain and dysfunctional. They prescribed drugs which didn't do much good and upset my stomach in to the bargain.

Not satisfied with their attitude, I travelled to my old family doctor of thirty years, some two hours drive away.  He looked at the X-rays, listened to my problems and just said "Where do you want to get it fixed?". He recommended a surgeon and I ended up having the hip resurfaced soon after.

My other hip lasted another eighteen months before I felt that it was time to have it done as well. It was maybe a little less advanced than the first but still interfering with my ability to work and play. I went to my surgeon with x-rays and symptoms and he resurfaced the second hip last August.

If anything, I was the one pushing for the operation, I wanted it as soon as possible.  The alternative frightened me more than any risk from the surgery. Many family and friends fell silent, or went "oooh!" when I said I wanted to have the operation. "Can't you wait? Can't you take drugs for it? That surgery looks terrible, it's dangerous, etc. etc."  

Considering the success rate of resurfacing surgery and knowing all the associated risks, I find the attitude that a person should be in uncontrollable pain and seriously impaired, hard to understand. I suppose it's a matter of how much risk you are prepared to take.  Maybe I'm in the reckless category. Anyway, it's all turned out well for me and I'm glad I did both hips sooner rather than later.

« Last Edit: October 08, 2009, 03:12:55 AM by muzza »

stevel

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Re: How long did you wait before deciding to go ahead with your operation?
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2009, 06:21:23 AM »
Although I didn't have much pain, my Internal Medicine Doctor showed me x-rays of my left hip and advised a hip replacement in August, 2007.  The x-rays showed obvious bone on bone with bone spurs already developed.  I wasn't keen on a hip replacement because of the limitations and didn't know about hip resurfacing until about 8 months later.  I downhill skiied the entire 2007-2008 season with some discomfort after a full day of skiing.  After an alpine grouse hunt in May 2008, my hip condition noticeably deteriorated and I had a significant loss of function.  I had a chronic limp and used a cane when walking about 1/2 mile.  After mowing the lawn, my left hip was toast.  I never had much pain that couldn't be alleviated with a pill or two of ibupropen, but my loss of function mandated a hip resurfacing.  My left leg atrophied to 2/3 size of my right leg.  So I had surgery on September 29, 2008 and now a year later I'm doing great.  Had I known about hip resurfacing, I probably would have had the surgery in September, 2008 after my Internal Medicine Dr. recommended a hip replacement.  He surmised I was tolerating pain and I should restore the function of a normal left hip.  When you are bone on bone, why wait?  Your bones are wearing away and may become too deteriorated to do a hip resurfacing.  Although it is major surgery, the surgery is highly successful when done by an experienced surgeon at a reputable hospital.
« Last Edit: October 08, 2009, 06:34:30 AM by stevel »
Steve
LBHR 60mm/54mm Dr Su 9/29/08 age 55
RBHR 60mm/54mm Dr Su 11/1/19 age 66

medgerton

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Re: How long did you wait before deciding to go ahead with your operation?
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2009, 06:04:58 AM »
I just read the replies and they are very good.

I am going to use just a few words.

If you are bone on bone and losing joint function you are not going to grow new cartilage. You will continue to lose function and pain will increase. Your everyday life fuctions will be compromised.

If you have an osteoarthritis diagnosis by two doctors why are you waiting? You are trading good days for bad.

I am 30 days post op, was off crutches in one week, have no pain whatsoever in the hip. I went back to work after 10 days, took nothing but Tylenol after leaving the hospital.

There are plenty of people with slower recoveries but a good number recover just like me. I am 53 years old, athletically active my whole life and looking forward to being so again.

Gav

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Re: How long did you wait before deciding to go ahead with your operation?
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2009, 01:17:14 PM »
Hi Steve

I think I was pretty much at the same stage as you, in May, when I was diagnosed with the dreaded Arthritis. I was still running then, but my groin was continually swollen and tight. Consultant tried to ease it with cortisone, but that didn't help.

I too thought about putting it off, but I thought why should I I'm only 42, and it will ultimately stop me partaking in my hobbies of gym, running and golf. I was very nervous about the surgery, but I decided to get it done. I'm 5 weeks post op now and doing ok. I have a little clunking, but I think that the muscle has not yet tightened up over the joint yet, least I hope so!

I have made a good recovery so far I think.

Go for it, don't give up things you take for granted as a result.
4th September 2009, Mr McLauchlan, Preston

DePuy ASR  Right Hip-

No worries now!!!!!!!!!!!

 

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