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Author Topic: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op  (Read 2773 times)

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Biscuit

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Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« on: November 29, 2011, 01:48:46 PM »
Good morning, Everyone. I'm new here, been lurking and reading for about a week.  I have questions about the support you've all gotten from spouses, family and/or friends before and after your surgeries?

My husband was diagnosed with osteo-arthritis in both hips about 8 years ago, and is scheduled for resurfacing on the left hip in January with Dr. Brooks at Cleveland Clinic, the right hip following in May.  He's only 48, is a very athletic person, loves to play hockey, run, hike, camp, etc. - you name it.  Unfortunately, despite his best efforts to do everything he can to manage the problem (swimming, glucosomine-chondritin, strength training, etc.), his quality of life has deteriorated very badly the last couple of years, and he can barely rake leaves anymore (a problem when you live in NE Ohio!), and he hasn't run or played hockey in probably 2 years or more. He also doesn't sleep well and has trouble with basic things, like tying shoes or getting into the car.  His morale is about as low as it can go, I think. This surgery offers his best chance at becoming fully active again, and we are both pretty excited about it. 

Anyway - I've been reading this board for many days now, and found a lot of terrific information and general comfort from all of your very positive stories.  But - I've not yet seen anything regarding how your families, spouses and/or friends have supported you through this process?  My husband and I are a team - we tackle every issue that comes up from a "we" perspective - it just makes everything easier.  I assume many of you have support in one form or another, and I just want to know more about the role they play in this process, or the role you wish they had played, so that I can be better prepared and be the best partner possible while my husband is approaching his surgery and recovering from it.  Any insight would be very much appreciated. 

hernanu

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2011, 03:17:13 PM »
Hi Biscuit, welcome! Any hippy spouse is welcome here.

You ask a great question, and I think my answer is that family help is crucial for both the hippy (to be) and to you and yours. I had the help of my parents, who were with me for the first week after the procedure, and continually on the phone after.

I know that before the surgery, I was deeply depressed, since all of the activities that I loved were cut down and I wasn't even able to do normal things without pain. Surviving that was a weight not just on me, but my family and friends - they saw me wince in pain, move slower, struggle through the day.

The time leading up to the surgery is also stressful, since it is a nervous time even when you know the outcome will be good (like my second HR). Then afterwards, you need to keep your spirits up as you recover, which although an optimistic time and hopefully comparatively quick, is not easy. Then you get to enjoy his return to life afterwards with him, knowing how much you've helped him.

All of this you can play a huge part in, your husband is lucky to have you and to have you understand the pain and the relief afterwards. Of course you have a major part to play in this, sounds like you already are playing that part.

So no specific thing that you need to do, as questions come up, we'll gladly answer them, and you can use them as needed, I think being there is a great help on its own.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2011, 03:53:08 PM by hernanu »
Hernan, LHR 8/24/2010, RHR 11/29/2010 - Cormet, Dr. Snyder

Aerial

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2011, 04:05:28 PM »
I can tell you that I am newly married (4 years ago).  I have had a deterioting hip for three of these years.  My husband has seen me though alot and has seen me deteriorate.  He has been super supportive in terms of being encouraging and helping me see things in a better light.  He cares and that is what matters most.  He was wonderful and compassionate after my hip arthroscopy a year ago and he was a darn good nurse.  Be truly interested in your spouse and give him some loving!  The rest will happen (recovery, etc.).  Knowing someone cares makes all the difference and you seem like that type of person.  I will be glad to have my husband by my side next week when I go through surgery.  I also look forward to being the active person I once was (and so does he)!
Right hip resurfacing with Dr. Gross on 12/5/11!

Woodstock Hippy

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2011, 05:04:53 PM »
My wife has been great.  It's been kind of like this;






Bilateral, Dr Scott Marwin, NYU Joint Disease Hosp, 11/15/11

hernanu

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2011, 05:15:08 PM »
So Woodstock... it was the grapes that helped you recoup?  ;D
Hernan, LHR 8/24/2010, RHR 11/29/2010 - Cormet, Dr. Snyder

DGossack

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2011, 08:18:48 PM »
I agree that is very important to have people close to you around, after surgery especially.  You need someone who can provide that emotional support when things aren't going great.  And then someone to share the joys of that first walk without crutches. 

And of course someone who can tell you that your ass is still cute even with a big scar on it. ;D

Your husband is lucky to have you taking such an active interest in this procedure.  Just be aware that this is a major surgery and he may get a bit grumbly because of the pain, drugs, constipation, or limited activity.

Best wishes.

Dan
LBHR, Dr. Pritchett, 8/1/2011
fullmetalhip.wordpress.com

Tin Soldier

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2011, 08:48:56 PM »
Excellent question, Biscuit.  I have pondered many times what my wife was thinking or how she was feeling, while dealing with several years of my discomfort, grouchiness, limited ROM, limited energy, poor mood,... leading up the time of surgery.  I helped her out a few years ago with an illness and it can be very trying for the caregiver.  I like to think that I was actually pretty easy to deal with, but looking back, yikes, I think I was not too fun to be around.  Unlike Woody's photos of the grapes.  ::) Dude, I think the last we did that was in High School. 

On the recovery side, both physically and mentally I didn't need much help and I think I a number of folks here were the same.  Sure your're crutching around, but with time off from work and a good set up prior to surgery, life isn't too bad during recovery.  Mentally, recovery will have it's ups and downs, but generally, I felt charged and positive, looking forward to a getting my life back. 

However, leading up to surgery a few weeks, and going in for surgery, is where I felt it was absolutely necessary to be with my wife.  It was simply mental, I didn't want to go through that alone.  For an active guy like your husband, that might be the hardest part of this journey. 

I'll share the joys of my first steps on my HR with you guys.  You're like family to me! ;)

LBHR 2/22/11, RBHR 8/23/11 - Pritchett.

hernanu

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2011, 09:00:09 PM »
Love the shot, Tin - pretty much how I felt walking at first.
Hernan, LHR 8/24/2010, RHR 11/29/2010 - Cormet, Dr. Snyder

Tin Soldier

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2011, 09:32:49 PM »
Didn't really hurt, it was more apprehension that caused the grimace.
LBHR 2/22/11, RBHR 8/23/11 - Pritchett.

mslendzion

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2011, 12:57:45 AM »
dang, it looks painful. 
Left BHR 1/9/12 Dr. Schmitt

Biscuit

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2011, 02:44:53 AM »
Thank you so much for your replies.

I know he is nervous - very nervous - but he's generally a pretty quiet person, so I'm probably the only person who can tell.  He doesn't like doctors, doesn't like medications, doesn't like being ill.  But he really liked Dr. Brooks and he is feeling very positive about him and the surgery; not to mention that he's at the bone-on-bone point - if he doesn't have the surgery, he'll be using a walker within the year.  He knows he is out of options.  He just has natural nervousness of the "unknown", I think. 

I did turn him on to this site, and convinced him to come here and talk to all of you about it, that it would help with his anxiety to talk to others who have done this.   He's never participated in any sort of internet chat before, but he's registered on the site now, so you may meet him soon.

Woodstock - I think that's what my husband is hoping recovery will be like.   :)

Tin Soldier - thanks for the photo.  First steps are powerful things - 




Cantab

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2011, 03:59:22 PM »
Biscuit, Your husband's story sounds a lot like mine. 
Quote
He's only 48, is a very athletic person, loves to play hockey, run, hike, camp, etc. - you name it.  Unfortunately, despite his best efforts to do everything he can to manage the problem (swimming, glucosomine-chondritin, strength training, etc.), his quality of life has deteriorated very badly the last couple of years, and he can barely rake leaves anymore (a problem when you live in NE Ohio!), and he hasn't run or played hockey in probably 2 years or more. He also doesn't sleep well and has trouble with basic things, like tying shoes or getting into the car.  His morale is about as low as it can go

I'm 52, played hockey, not in the last 4 years, was very active but over the last few years slowed down alot. The putting on shoes and socks was the last straw, damn I'm only 52 I shouldnt't need help.  I tried all the same "solutions" even a cortisone shot in the hip joint.  I finally decided that the resurfacing was the best solution.  My wife was posting here a few times before I finally started reading the hip stories to get a better idea of the surgery and recovery.  I have never been on a forum before and I am so glad  i came here.  This forum really helped with what to expect and talk to others who have been there.  Hope to see some posts from your husband soon, but if not it's OK to just read what others post.  Good luck going forward.
RBHR Nov. 10, 2011.  Dr Specht Lahey Clinic, Burlington, MA

manyworries

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2011, 08:54:07 PM »
Just stay supportive and ignore the moodiness that accompanies the serious conditions that we have. Positive reinforcement, read all the great results stories to him,  Remind him that you will be back to having great sex soon... how's that idea?!!  I can hardly even TYPE the word sex anymore, haha !!

Who said that he'll be in a walker within a year due to being bone-on-bone??  I haven't been told that YET, but I sure feel I need a walker at times.  Can't even walk down my driveway to get the mail... just debilitated... UGH :((

Elle

mslendzion

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #13 on: December 01, 2011, 01:03:04 AM »
Biscuit, Your husband's story sounds a lot like mine. 
Quote
He's only 48, is a very athletic person, loves to play hockey, run, hike, camp, etc. - you name it.  Unfortunately, despite his best efforts to do everything he can to manage the problem (swimming, glucosomine-chondritin, strength training, etc.), his quality of life has deteriorated very badly the last couple of years, and he can barely rake leaves anymore (a problem when you live in NE Ohio!), and he hasn't run or played hockey in probably 2 years or more. He also doesn't sleep well and has trouble with basic things, like tying shoes or getting into the car.  His morale is about as low as it can go

I'm 52, played hockey, not in the last 4 years, was very active but over the last few years slowed down alot. The putting on shoes and socks was the last straw, damn I'm only 52 I shouldnt't need help.  I tried all the same "solutions" even a cortisone shot in the hip joint.  I finally decided that the resurfacing was the best solution.  My wife was posting here a few times before I finally started reading the hip stories to get a better idea of the surgery and recovery.  I have never been on a forum before and I am so glad  i came here.  This forum really helped with what to expect and talk to others who have been there.  Hope to see some posts from your husband soon, but if not it's OK to just read what others post.  Good luck going forward.

Cantab,
I'm much like you.  At 46 I'm walking with a can and can't touch my toes on my bad hip leg.  It is hard to put on pants.  I tried cortisone as well and it did not help.  Are you pre or post surgury?
Left BHR 1/9/12 Dr. Schmitt

Cantab

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #14 on: December 01, 2011, 02:54:03 PM »
mslendzion, I am 3 weeks post op today.  Every day is better than the day before, but still real stiff, IT band is inflamed as the surgeon had to split it to get to the hip.  Down to one crutch outside and a cane at home.  PT has helped and hope to be driving by end of week.
RBHR Nov. 10, 2011.  Dr Specht Lahey Clinic, Burlington, MA

mslendzion

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #15 on: December 02, 2011, 12:58:26 AM »
Cantab, that is awesome. I'm glad to hear you are recovering well.  Driving will be a big step.  How many hours of PT do you do each day?  Best wishes on you continuing your rapid recovery.  What approach did your surgeon use? 
Left BHR 1/9/12 Dr. Schmitt

rbt2011

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2011, 03:28:54 AM »
Biscuit,
Family is super important.  I know that I couldnt have gone through it without the support of my wife.  She has been awesome through all of this and I owe everything to her.  Your husband sounds like he has picked a great doctor and is healthy enough to get the surgery done.  Best of luck and let him know he is welcome here. 
Right side BHR 11/29/2011

manyworries

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #17 on: December 02, 2011, 06:20:22 AM »
Biscuit... I really want to know if they said for sure your husband will be using a walker in a year being that he is bone one bone!  Is it just one side??  I haven't been told that yet, just that "walking is not my friend?!"  Think the Dr's would be afraid to tell me that right now, as I'm at my wits end.  If your husband is a candidate and has a great surgeon picked out, get him fixed ASAP!  Absolutely no reason to wait and worry.  The great majority of people here are thrilled with their outcomes!!  Best of luck to you both...

Elle

Biscuit

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #18 on: December 03, 2011, 12:26:18 AM »
Manyworries - I'm so sorry it took me this long to reply.

No, no one told him that specifically.  He was told a couple of years ago by his orthopaedic physician that if he would need a hip replacement on both sides in the "next few years", and that if he didn't, that he would probably need a walker eventually to get around.  There was only a general time frame mentioned, and he IS bone on bone now.  Even Dr. Brooks commented, when he put his x-rays up, "How are you still walking?"

A couple of months ago he saw our family physician to talk about more pain management, she was concerned enough about his condition to inquire if he would be more comfortable with a cane.  He was horrified at the thought.

That's when I put my foot down and told him that he needed to stop all this "hate doctors, hate being sick, I'm young, I can tough it out" crap and either find a surgeon and get scheduled for surgery, or he'd be using a walker within six months and THEN he'd really be hating his life!

Honestly - I love men, and I love MY man most of all, but they can be difficult.  ;)

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Manyworries, is there no hope at all?  I know you said you have the metal allergy, but can't you get a hip replacement?  I feel horrible for you that you are in so much pain.

« Last Edit: December 03, 2011, 12:28:22 AM by Biscuit »

PistolPete

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Re: Question about family/friends support pre- and post-op
« Reply #19 on: December 03, 2011, 12:42:24 AM »
Cantab-  You're still not driving yet?  It's really not that bad.  I was driving at around 2 weeks or so.  Each day certainly gets easier and having support at home is very helpful.  The first few days I was home from the hospital and my wife went to work were quite challenging for sure.  I'm almost 4 weeks post op and doing pretty well.  I'm already walking with just a cane and don't use the crutches at all and I'm walking with no cane around the house as much as possible.

 

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