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Author Topic: New here, time to decide Bilat or not?  (Read 2168 times)

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Quig

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New here, time to decide Bilat or not?
« on: January 06, 2016, 05:34:56 PM »
Hello all. Great site, thanks for allllll the info...


I'm 38, very active and fit. Avid mountain biker, motorcyclist. Been battling hip arthritis for about 8 years.


So the short version of the story is that I'm in the process of scheduling surgery with Dr. Gross. My right hip is shot, has been bad for years but has really, really deteriorated lately. The pain is significant and I'm waaaaay over it. My left hip has similar problems but not nearly as severe but it has become much more painful lately. I'm leaning toward a Bilat to get it all done in one shot. Dr Gross basically said it's up to me. He said the X-rays on the left are certainly not pretty but indicate we have time to wait.


Any helpful suggestions from you folks will be appreciated. Right now I'm counting down the days getting to the 'Other Side' and trying to be patient getting surgery scheduled.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2016, 03:15:28 PM by Quig »
Bilateral Hip Resurfacing by Dr. Thomas Gross
  -Right Hip; April 11, 2016
  -Left Hip; April 13, 2016

jd

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Re: New here, time to decide Bilat or not?
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2016, 06:36:09 PM »
It's a tough decision and I think comes down to just how bad your left hip is and how long you think it'd be before it became limiting in your activities if you had a perfect right hip after resurfacing.

In my case my right hip was terrible and my left was clearly deteriorated, but it wasn't particularly bothering me. All my limitations were due to my right hip. Since I'm 35 and want to maximize the chance that the implants will outlast me I decided to wait on getting the left done. I assume I'll need to some day, but I have no idea if that'll be in one year, ten years, or maybe even more. I have to also add that having gone through a single-hip recovery, I found having one "good" hip to be enormously useful post-op, particularly during the first six weeks when you have more ROM restrictions.

Having said that, blinky recently had a bilateral operation and she seems to be doing fantastically (and I'm sure she'll chime in here)! She has the advantage that once this (harder) recovery is done, she's done!

So, it's a judgment call. You say that your left has become much more painful lately. That to me seems to push toward the bilateral if you're actually noticing your left on a regular basis.

blinky

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Re: New here, time to decide Bilat or not?
« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2016, 06:38:03 PM »
I did bilateral nine weeks ago. Terrible left hip, bad but not that painful right hip. I knew they were both bone on bone. My initial thought was one at a time: see how the surgery went, have one good leg to work with, stage them four months apart or so.


Dr Gross raised the possibility of doing them both in the same week, getting it over with. It would be tougher initially, but just one recovery.


I thought about it a few days and saw his point. One at a time would be a full year of recovery vs six months for two in a week. Reading accounts of bilat here, it sounded like the first week was really hard, then it got easier. My husband could be home with me and help me for a week. (He travels a lot; he could take a week off from traveling in the fall and then again in the spring, but it seemed easier to just have him work from home and not travel once, not try to schedule it twice.) And we have to juggle the kids and my obligations and work....could I disappear twice?


Besides, I thought I had missed out on enough due to having painful hips. Did I want to sacrifice a whole other year when I could do it in half that time?


I went for it.


No regrets.


It is tough. You won't have a good leg to help you. But if you do vigorous sports now, you know how to put your head down and work hard. Can someone be with you that first week until you gain some strength/figure out how to maneuver? Doesn't have to be 24/7, H did leave me at home alone for several hours at a time, but you will need some help.


edited to add: I am older, 53, and it was clear both my hips were shot.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2016, 06:40:27 PM by blinky »

Quig

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Re: New here, time to decide Bilat or not?
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2016, 07:03:07 PM »
Thanks, I appreciate the replies.


I've read endlessly on this site trying to learn about the process and prepare myself for what I'm getting myself into. I think the hardest part is the 'roller coaster' of ups and downs I'm going through lately with these hips. They've both become much worse the last year or so. I've been told by doctors for years "You'll know when it's time". Now I know what they meant, it's TIME. I'm sick and tired of sacrificing so much due to my hips. For the last few years the cycling has seemed to help significantly but lately even that hurts. Getting to the gym has become more and more difficult and I pay dearly for the workouts. I'm soooooooo looking forward to getting this done!


I guess I'd already really made my mind up for a variety of reasons but was just curious what some of you who've been through this thought. I appreciate the info immensely! I even have a friend here in town who had Bilateral surgery with Dr Su and he's been incredibly helpful. He also encourages Bilateral for all the obvious reasons, most specifically ONE recovery.


Of course I know the early stages of that recovery are NOT going to be fun but I have a very high pain tolerance and am stubborn as a mule. I think the hard part will be following protocol and waiting per the Dr's instructions.


Now the hard part is the waiting game. I've been dreading this for YEARS and even though the surgery scares the hell out of me I know it's time and I want to get it done ASAP.

Bilateral Hip Resurfacing by Dr. Thomas Gross
  -Right Hip; April 11, 2016
  -Left Hip; April 13, 2016

Snowbound

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Re: New here, time to decide Bilat or not?
« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2016, 08:27:01 PM »
I did bilateral last January and have absolutely no regrets, I'd highly recommend it. It wasn't as hard as I expected, and having one surgery and rehabbing both hips at the same time gets you active again that much sooner.


My surgery was the end of January. After I started rehab I joined the local gym and worked out through the summer. In September I started playing hockey twice a week (I'd retired from playing a couple of years earlier due to pain). In October I started a weekly squash game with my son and I have a ski trip planned for the end of the month (it's been about 4 years since I skied).


Last weekend I did 8 km on snowshoes, and while my calves really ached the next couple of days there was no hip pain at all.


Also a couple of weeks ago we had a 90th birthday party for my father, and I was on my feet all afternoon without any trouble. Before the surgery I would have lasted about 15 minutes standing at a party.


After the surgery they got me up walking the next day. I needed help from my wife for the first few days to get my legs up on the bed and I was on crutches for 4 weeks. I could have walked without them sooner, but I followed with the surgeons instructions.


The hardest part of the recovery was sleeping. I'm a slide sleeper and I don't sleep well on my back. I found sleeping on the recliner helped a lot, and in bed I put pillows under my knees.


Quig

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Re: New here, time to decide Bilat or not?
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2016, 12:39:03 AM »
It's great to hear some reassurance about bilateral. As of now I'm scheduled for April 11/13 with Dr Gross. I was reeeeeally hoping to get in sooner as I feel like that pretty much puts me out of commission for all of the summer. I'm still waiting to hear when Dr. Su might be able to get me in, so maybe I'll get lucky and get in sooner. Is that a reasonable analysis? If I have surgery basically mid-april how soon am I likely to be mobile enough to be able to enjoy a relatively active summer?


It's funny, I've read sooooooooo many of the threads on here I'm quite familiar with everyone who has replied to this thread. It's great to read the reassurance that you're all doing well enough to offer encouragement to someone who's just getting ready to go through the whole process. I really appreciate it!
Bilateral Hip Resurfacing by Dr. Thomas Gross
  -Right Hip; April 11, 2016
  -Left Hip; April 13, 2016

JHippy

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Re: New here, time to decide Bilat or not?
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2016, 01:03:54 AM »
Mid-April? Your summer is going to be pretty good actually. After six weeks the only restrictions you'll have is no impact + no extremes. You'll want to ease into stuff and be careful but by then you'll be able to do quite a lot. By 3 months or so you'll almost forget about your hip. Based on my personal experience of course, mine was a fairly smooth recovery.
Left HR; Dec. 17, 2014; Dr. Gross and Lee Webb NP;
uncemented Biomet Recap/Magnum; 50mm/56mm.

Quig

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Re: New here, time to decide Bilat or not?
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2016, 04:42:33 AM »
Jhippy, I can't tell you how much I appreciate hearing that! It's hard to know what to expect but that sounds awesome. I know I'll have to take it slow for a bit but hearing you say it's not unlikely that I'll be able to be pretty active at the 3 month point sounds great. Thanks.


I'm already hitting the gym hard and riding as much as I can to make sure I'm in very good shape for surgery and I've always recovered quickly but never have had such a major surgery. I'm scared to death but also can't freakin' wait to get on the road to feeling better.


I've never wanted spring to get here so damn bad!!
Bilateral Hip Resurfacing by Dr. Thomas Gross
  -Right Hip; April 11, 2016
  -Left Hip; April 13, 2016

 

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