Author Topic: Pain  (Read 867 times)

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« on: May 15, 2018, 08:58:52 PM »
No I couldnt think of a catchy title. I'm sitting here on ice, in lots of pain, the SAME pain, mind you that I endured for 3 years before my surgery.   I'm at 8 weeks.  4 weeks 10% weight bearing, 2 weeks gradual full body weight.  Week 7 supposed to be on a cane.  I tried that but it was just too painful for me to put all my body weight so I switched to one crutch.  Worked great.  I went to a physical therapist yesterday to get my eval done for Dr. Gross.  So for the first time, I was able to see what my new hip could do.  I was impressed that so soon, my leg could move like it did.  Therapist was great, gentle and didn't push it to get the necessary measurements.  I walk perfectly with one crutch.  I Hobble like I did before I had surgery when I use a cane.  She tells me to use the cane at home as I need to get used to more weight bearing on that hip.   I use the cane today at home all day, push through the pain and now I am trying to figure out the source of my gluteal pain.  I was free of that horrible pain in my butt that was bone on bone chilling once I had the surgery.  Now, it's back.  I cannot use the cane, I'm in enough pain to take pills my right hip feels like it's on fire.  I try the stretching exercises and the new set of exercises Dr Gross's office gave me and I can lift my leg one time and hold for about 2 seconds.  WTH.  I lay on my side, and cannot at all lift my leg without severe pain. I did a psoas stretch but didn't feel any relief.     Is it my psoas, my joint? nerve? Has something slipped?  all of the above?  Seems like I have taken one huge step back.  So depressing. :'(   Arthritichip, it seems I am following your path of pain!!!
Dr Gross, Right hip, 3/21/18

John C

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Re: Pain
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2018, 10:56:20 AM »
Hi Claudia. I am sorry to hear about what you are now going through, but from my experience both with my first hip 10 years ago and my current hip 3 weeks out, it does not sound unusual or necessarily bad as long as we learn from the experience.
You mentioned in an earlier post that you are a bit Type A (like me), and that opens many traps for both of us during the recovery process. You mentioned in this last post that the PT suggested that you work towards using a cane and carrying more weight on the new hip. You then went directly to using the cane all day and "pushing through the pain", and your body is now telling you that this was not a good idea and you have pushed too hard too fast. This is not an approach that either your hip or Dr Gross is going to approve of. As a professional athlete, I know what it means to push through the pain, and early recovery from resurfacing surgery is not the time to do that. On this site, you will constantly hear people say to listen to your body, and pushing through the pain is not doing that, and your body is trying to let you know that. Yes, you want to gradually increase your weight bearing, but jumping to a full day on a cane was clearly too much too fast. If it helps, maybe look at your time frame another way. From a weight bearing point of view, your first 4 weeks did not count, so in terms of building up weight bearing, you are just on week three of your recovery, right where I am right now. I can take a few steps with a cane, but I am much better off using one crutch. On my 1 mile walks which I do a couple of times a day, I am gradually working on how much weight I put on my new hip with each step, and pain is my guide. If a few steps hurt, then I put more weight on the crutch, and if the hip feels good for a few steps then I give it more weight. The progress is not linear nor fast, but it is gradually moving in the right direction which is all that matters at this point. Last time, I was able to move off of one crutch between four and five weeks, so I am optimistic that I will be able to get off of my one crutch gradually over the next week or so which would mean around week four.
You also mentioned your new venture into the world of front and side leg lifts. This is brand new territory for your new hip, so I suggest exploring it very gradually or your hip may complain bitterly. You mentioned that you could do a leg lift for about 2 seconds; that is an awesome start and you can build very gradually from there as long as you do not try to push through the pain. Side leg lifts will be much more challenging because this involves the muscles that were cut during surgery. I remember this being very challenging my first time around (I can not even imagine them yet with my new hip). Full side leg lifts sound pretty aggressive to start, and I remember working with "clam shells" for quite awhile before attempting those. When I first started doing the clam shells, it was more about just sending the intention to move, rather than actually moving much if at all. After a week or so, these gradually became possible, and I was able to start imagining side leg lifts. Again, if it hurts at this point, you are trying to push too much too soon. The soft tissue recovery is a matter of months, not days, and will continue for at least 12 to 18 months. Pushing through the pain will just slow the process down, and as you said, can create a "huge step back".
For folks like us, this recovery process is a great opportunity for patience and learning to appreciate very tiny steps along this long path. If we insist on fighting our bodies messages and pushing through the pain, it can become a painful study in frustration. Having hopefully learned those lessons my first time around, this second hip is much easier to gently and patiently negotiate the process. I hope my story helps your own process.
John/ Left uncemented Biomet/ Dr Gross/ 6-16-08
Right uncemented Biomet/Dr Gross/ 4/25/18


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Re: Pain
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2018, 12:23:59 PM »
John C, that was a great post.

I was going to say don't worry if you need more time on one crutch than the PT thinks you do. Just work gradually toward a cane in your own time. I remember trying to ditch those assistive devices and how I went back and forth, sometimes too aggressive and having to take a day off or go backwards a little while. I took the cane when I traveled the first six months, just in case. A GF on the slow recovery plan took her crutches with her on the road for the first four months. We are all an experiment of one.

And those leg lifts? Hoo boy! I think if you read old posts you'll see we all struggled with them. I could do the front ones okay but those side ones? No way! It was comical how bad I was. But it will come. I flew to see Dr Gross at six weeks so Lee gave me the PT exam. She said not to worry if I could barely raise my leg. Start with a few tiny ones if that was all I could do. She cautioned me not to overdo them, to just add a few each week slowly. I think I got to the magic number (was it 30? 20?) in a month, then added one pound weights and dropped the number back down to single digits.

And you will keep finding things you can't do during the first couple of years. Surprising things, like lower ab or psoas or hip flexor things. There will be weaknesses and incidents in which your brain and body don't communicate well. But you can overcome them.

Dr Gross
bilat 11-15


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Re: Pain
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2018, 04:25:32 PM »
A great post, indeed, John C.

As many, many (including myself) have noted in posts on this site, recovery from hip resurfacing surgery is a marathon rather than a sprint --- as you say, at least 12 to 18 months. For me, I recall noticing some improvements even after two years.
LBHR 10-20-2010
Dr. Brooks - Cleveland Clinic
Age 62 at time of surgery

Pat Walter

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Re: Pain
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2018, 08:56:01 PM »
Hi Claudia
8 weeks post op is still early in your recovery.  If you require a walking device, use your one crutch and continue on.  Are you using the one crutch on the opposite side of the operated hip?  That is how it is supposed to be used. 

Everyone has a different recovery.  Since you were slow in your weight bearing, it might have taken longer for your muscles to start to heal.  Many people just take more time to heal.  I would not push on any pt or activities if they hurt.  Hurting usually means you are doing too much. 

There have been people that have taken almost a year to walk properly and with out an aid.  Very unusual, but it has happened.
Be sure to keep touch with Dr. Gross if you are having problems, but know you are not the only person that has had a slow recovery.
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Please be patient and things will work out for you.

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3/15/06 LBHR De Smet


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