Author Topic: THR surgery plus what I did for a speedy recovery  (Read 2390 times)

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strost

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THR surgery plus what I did for a speedy recovery
« on: April 14, 2012, 07:12:38 AM »
Since I've been asking lots of questions over the past few years - especially agonizing over when to have surgery and how to prepare for it, I wanted to give all that helped me an update. If you search my prior posts, you will see my definite angst. Here is a nutshell - almost 48, likely a structural deformity (at least 2 surgeons suggested it), one of the worst hips my surgeon had seen (worse than the x ray), virtually no internal rotation or ability to pull it higher than 90, minimal external rotation, and a definite limp. I found something that took away my bone on bone pain, so I canceled my 7/11 resurfacing surgery. My other hip has a bone spur and the same femoral neck shape, but there is still joint space and range of motion. I had back surgery from some injuries in 2010 - ruptured l5-s1 and re-ruptured the same disc in January of this year (likely contributed by the total lack of range of motion in the hip).

My recovery from an anterior total hip replacement on 3/13 was nothing short of amazing to me, my surgeon, primary care dr, chiropractor and physical therapist. They have never seen anyone recover so quickly. I had no pain (despite how aggressive the surgery is) and went off pain meds in the 4th day post op, no bruising and minimal swelling. I walked a mile 4 days post op and by 7 days, I was not even taking naps. I'll give some basics of what helped make a difference later.

Here is why I'm glad I did it now versus waiting. Since I did not have pain, I could have easily put it off for several more years.
1. Huge difference in the how my low back feels - PT says it is like putty versus the rock it used to be. My sciatica has not been bothering me. My SI joints are not as tight. I can lie flat on my back (versus one side being jacked up).
2. My gait is improving which is eliminating compensation patterns. Having that range of motion in my hip is huge. I still have a ways to go to get all the range of motion back because some of the muscle fibers have shortened. I'm also retraining myself not to take as short of step with my right leg (because I needed to in order to push my hip around before surgery).
3. I'd have even more atrophy in my leg if I waited. My go to leg was having spasms from overuse. It is quite a bit larger and stronger than my new hip leg. I think I was delusional about the atrophy that was happening because I could not exercise in the full range of motion.
4. It would take me more time and effort to get back that full range of motion if I gave it a few more years.
5. I was putting my whole body at risk for major injury. Without that range of motion and leg strength a simple slip on the ice or stumble could have set me up for really hurting my back, knees or my other hip. Force has to travel somewhere.
6. Having a normal gait should extend the life of my other hip and reduce the formation of bone spurs.
7. It is giving me my life back - I was giving up several things that I loved and I should be able to do them again easily soon.
8. It helps me mentally - I've always been very active. To not do all I love, to have people ask me about my limp and to walk like an old lady was depressing.
9. I'm going to go into my 50s active and healthy versus fighting off further decline. It is a completely new mindset.
10. I'm going to have more time to enjoy life. I've spent countless hours researching healing and hip stuff.
11. It was such a small amount of time for recovery (especially in my case) versus the decades of enjoyment I will have. If I would have known it would be that easy, I would have done it years ago. Maybe it would have prevented my ruptured disc and surgery. Who knows?

Email me if you want more detailed info on what I did. It is very late, so I'm going to high level it.
Pre-op:
1. Get your conscious mind out of fear. That was a huge challenge for me. I did it by making up my pro and con list, making a vision board of all the things I'm going to do on my new hip and looking at it every day before surgery, getting acupuncture to calm my mind, improve energy flow and prepare my body, a variety of energy work to help my mind/body connection and acceptance of this traumatic surgery, developed some healing rituals and meditations, praying (found it calmed me more to pray for others in the hospital and surgical suite than just me), listened to theta wave music, etc.
2. Prep your body. The day prior to surgery, I had acupuncture, massage and a chiropractic adjustment (helped get my body in the best shape and position and reduced my leg length discrepancy). I also had been doing direct current therapy to strengthen my body as well as loosen various muscles.
3. Prep your cells. I took several homeopathy formulas designed to reduce inflammation, edema, and pain as well as promote healing and the reduction of oxidative stress and scar tissue. I did this both before and after surgery (granted the pharmacist came down and told me to stop taking all my stuff, I said OK and then kept taking it. I figured most of these natural ingredients had been used for these exact purposes for centuries and all they were giving me was pain med and a bag of ice! I also used a pulsed magnetic field mat to help get my cells functioning optimally.

Post op:
1. I started using my biaxial magnet by my hip as soon as I was back in my room.
2. I put on my earbuds and had a variety of subliminal healing recordings, theta waves and more playing while I rested.
3. Started taking my homeopathies as soon as I stopped being nauseated - lasted the rest of that day.
4. Used my own infrared blanket instead of their blanket.
5. Got up and moved around as much as I could. Walked the halls. After discharge, I walked big box stores for the first few days. I used a walker mainly because of my dogs, but stopped using it on day 5 as I felt stable.

I hope this info is helpful and that my journey and recovery gives people hope.

Again, please email me with any questions.
Susan
« Last Edit: April 14, 2012, 01:19:22 PM by Pat Walter »

strost

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Re: Why I'm glad I had surgery plus what I did for a speedy recovery
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2012, 07:16:24 AM »
I forgot to add one of the most important pre-op tips - do your research on your surgeon. I was willing to travel for the resurfacing, but found one of the top dr in the surgery I had was just 20 minutes away. My PT texted a bunch of his surgeon contacts and asked who they would use. One dr rose to the surface in the area. I had a friend who used him and was tickled with her results. All the other tips in the world won't make up for a hack job. Don't take chances with an inexperienced surgeon - not with such a major and important operation.

hernanu

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Re: THR surgery plus what I did for a speedy recovery
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2012, 09:28:29 PM »
Glad for your results, thanks for posting your decision process and what led you where.
Hernan, LHR 8/24/2010, RHR 11/29/2010 - Cormet, Dr. Snyder