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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: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?  (Read 1555 times)

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bosoxgordon

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Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« on: January 10, 2013, 01:29:20 AM »
I thought I'd try a new thread to see if there is anyone else out there like me. I am a professional pilot and am probably going to be having hip resurfacing surgery in the next few months. I have done my research and am pretty sure what to expect and how to handle it as far as returning to work and dealing with the FAA. However I thought I'd put the question out there to see if there is anyone else that works as a pilot that has had the surgery. Dr. Gross told me I could be back flying in 6 weeks. I'm curious if that has played out to be true in anyone else's experience. Any other feedback you may have would be great as well. Thanks again to Pat and everyone out here for all the great information.
Scott

Dr. Gross Left Uncemeted Biomet 11/13/2013

phillwad

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2013, 01:32:51 AM »
Sorry I can not help.  I fly most weeks and have become "friendly" with TSA - my 2 hips even set off the body scanners.  No big deal - just happens everytime - learn to enjoy it  :-\

patrick_d

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2013, 02:56:44 AM »
I am not a pilot (I have completed ground school and do have a little stick time), but I do have new hip from Dr. Gross.  I can tell you that I was driving with no problems at 6 weeks, however I found it very difficult to sit in my truck bucket seat for more than about 90 minutes without wanting to get up and do some walking.  On my 3 drive down to Columbia for my 6 week appointment I took 2 breaks for a 10-15 minute walk.

I think you will be a bit stiff and sore after flying for that long too.  I found that putting a pillow on the seat helped reduce the pressure on the incision and that made things a bit more comfortable, but not perfect. 

I am at 8 weeks now and can tell you that after 9 hours at a desk job I am pretty wiped out at the end of the day and still need 8-9 hours sleep each night to feel refreshed.  I would expect that a full day of flights is going to leave you pretty drained too.

Just so you know where I am coming from, I have had no issues with recovery and am doing extremely well.  I can walk 2-3 miles with no cane and am now doing the phase two leg lifts and stationary biking and ramping up my weight lifting.  Overall I consider that I am healing very well, so any complications would likely make all this a bit worse.

Hope this helps.
Dr. Gross 14-Nov-2012
Biomet Recap - Right Hip
41 yrs old at surgery

OtterDriver

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2013, 04:56:04 AM »
Hello...I presume Gordon!?

I fly Part 135 on a seasonal basis.  The off season being when I had my surgery and recovery.  My longest flights average 40 minutes so I don't know if I would be an accurate barometer for you even if I had been flying shortly after my procedure, but I can tell you that I was getting in and out of my full sized pick up and driving without any problems or discomforts at about two weeks. 

The reporting of my resurfacing on my FAA medical questionnaire (Second Class) was a nonevent and raised no flags whatsoever.

Hope this helps somewhat!

Good luck to you!

Bruce

OtterDriver

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2013, 05:03:56 AM »
Sorry!

I see by another post that it's Scott.

bosoxgordon

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2013, 01:59:09 PM »
Thanks for the feedback Bruce. I currently fly for a part 91 corporate flight department. I know the company I work for and my chief pilot will support me not matter how long it take for me to get back to flight status. We all maintain 1st class medicals mostly for the occasional international flights we do. (Those don't happen often) I was frankly a little surprised that I could be back at six weeks. With the normal lifting and weight restrictions I would have thought having to hold rudder pressure during a single engine procedure or a TR deployment would be the equivalent. I've never measured it but during an emergency procedure like that I would imagine it would require maybe 30lbs of pressure to be held by one leg. Anyway, I appreciate your feedback. It is encouraging to hear that you were driving at two weeks.

Safe flying.
Scott
Scott

Dr. Gross Left Uncemeted Biomet 11/13/2013

Ross

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2013, 02:07:33 PM »
Read through Dr Gross stories there was a guy in there who was a commercial pilot. I recall him having issues being in such tight quarters.  Will they let you put a pillow under your behind and I am not talking airline pillows.  The right seat will make or break you by a couple weeks Guess. I am at 6 weeks.  I can't ride in my wife's leather seats but my truck cloth seats Toyota I have a lot less problems.  Could go either way was a lot of guys who have singles have few problems after 3 weeks.
Cordially
Ross

curt

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2013, 02:09:24 PM »
Scott, I sent you a message this a.m.  You should have NO problems if the surgery results are average (with Dr. Gross, you should expect better than that).
The FAA does not care, just list it on the medical form that you had the surgery.  I would recommend that if you Class I is coming due in the next few months, just schedule one for before the surgery so that you don't have any issues when you have your next physical.  Gets it out of the way and out of your thoughts for a while.
Plan on taking 6-8 weeks off.  Flying is no problem and the abilty to taxi, brake etc. is no big deal.  Getting into and out of the seat with the twisting is a bit nerve wracking at first, but mostly mental after all of the post-surgical precautions.  Sitting for HOURS in the seat is no fun, so if you can make a habit of standing/moving if you can.
Good luck.  I am a better and more comfortable pilot BY FAR after the surgery than I was when I was at the height of my hip pain. 

Curt
51 yr, RHBiomet, Dr. Gross, 9/30/11
happy, hopeful, hip-full

dwbitt

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2013, 04:30:24 PM »
Hi Scott,

So I delivered Pressurized Aluminum Tubes for 40 years (OK, the first few years weren't pressurized) and retired about 18 months before my LBHR. I had a very good recovery and was driving my stick shift in about 3 weeks.

That being said I would hesitate to return to work too soon. I flew mostly Part 91 in a GIV and normal operations would be no problem early on, the difficulty would be abnormal procedures, a V1 cut (or a T/R deployment) on the wrong side could be very hard to deal with, manual reversion ever worse!

6 to 8 weeks is probably a realistic figure, hopefully the boss will be flexible and allow you to return sooner if the healing goes well.
Sorry I'm not able to give you more real world experience, except that your gonna love your new hip.

Best of luck,
Dave
Dave
LBHR, Dr. Su, 10/29/11

imgetinold

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2013, 05:36:00 PM »
There was a pilot - of a major airline I believe - who was done the same day as me.  I believe his handle here is http://surfacehippy.info/hiptalk/profile/?u=3873.  He doesn't really keep up with the forum, from I can tell, but maybe if you PM him he'll answer.

I found in difficult to sit and drive at 5 weeks, although in my car (with much more adjustable seats) I could find a comfortable spot.  In our van, which is more upright and no recline, it was not good for more than 10 min.

And, once back at my desk at six weeks, I had to get up every 30 min. or so just to keep from stiffening up.  Keep this in mind.
Andy - Right Biomet uncemented HR with Dr. Gross on 1/11/2012......GO BOILERS!

Tin Soldier

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2013, 11:01:47 PM »
Interesting discussion.  I'm not a pilot, nor do I play one on TV.  All I can offer is that there might be some less common professions out there that even a surgeon might not be super familiar with.  Presumably, if they didn't know the types of activities in the profession, I would hope that they would ask the patient and maybe even go through some of the physical movements in front of the doc pre op.  I think the detail of 30 lbs pushing on one leg for ....minutes is excellent info that would give a surgeon and even a very experienced PT the kind of info they would need for helping you get the best recovery possible.

Also, the surgeon and your employer will probably be rather conservative on the return-work form if you are claiming sick leave under FLMA (US).  I'm a desk jockey so the worst I could do would maybe slip when I'm getting my 5th cup of coffee at the coffeer bar, and bust up my my new hip, then sue.  I wouldn't do that though.  For a pilot I think the stakes could be just a touch higher so I'd like to think that the surgeon would be conservative about return to work/full activity and the patient would be, just that, patient.

BTW - I'm not a good example of patience, I drove before I should have, so maybe I'm not the guy to ask.       
LBHR 2/22/11, RBHR 8/23/11 - Pritchett.

curt

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2013, 06:35:46 PM »
    Scott, I didn't talk much about the EP scenarios, but the ability to push and hold the rudders during a reversion or V1 cut is not really a factor.  By the sixth week pushing is pretty normal (especially with your hips resisted by the seat back).  The two other guys at my company that had HRs, one a bilat a year apart, and the other a three day bilat took 8-10 weeks.
    Southwest and the FAA never asked whether I was ready to come back to work...just when!  I think that having just one hip done will make you a safe and comfortable candidate to return in 6-8 weeks.
51 yr, RHBiomet, Dr. Gross, 9/30/11
happy, hopeful, hip-full

bosoxgordon

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #12 on: January 26, 2013, 01:58:41 AM »
Just wanted to give everyone an update. I talked with Dr. Gross and got into a few specifics about the requirements involved with flying. He's pretty much confirmed everything all of you have told me out here. A 6-8 week recovery time seems quite reasonable. I also mentioned the EP scenarios and he said the 30-40 lbs of rudder pressure is really nothing to worry about since the hip normally bears 5-7 times body weight during a normal walk. So obviously a little rudder pressure is nothing compared to that.

Thanks for all the feedback and input. It really helps me work up the courage to pull the trigger on this and get it done. That by far is the hardest part of this whole process. The "when" question.
Scott

Dr. Gross Left Uncemeted Biomet 11/13/2013

Tin Soldier

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Re: Any other pilots that have HSR surgery?
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2013, 08:32:22 PM »
Cool, makes me want to learn to fly.

Agreed on the "when" question.  That was probably the hardest part, other than some jitters pre surgery, but there's not much choice then.  There is some relief to finalizing on a surgery date.

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

 

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