May 25, 2015
This is my first post and I am scheduled for bilateral hip resurfacing by Dr. Bose in July this year.
I am nervous as hell as I have never spent time in hospital let alone an operation of such calibre. I am scared of the general anaesthetic the most and how I will feel when (if) I wake up.
My background is that I am a 44 year old male that has had quite an active earlier life. I played basketball in my younger years and also to some degree gymnastics although not so good at it. I played golf, football, cricket, skiing and surfing. My flexibility has been always quite rigid and at the age of 34 I was told that I had early onsets of OA. This was from a chiropractor that I had once seen because of a sore lower back problem. He insisted that I get an xray on my hips and he called me the following day with this news. Basically he said in 10 years that I will need total hip replacement and he was 100% correct to the year.
In the years following this announcement my hips did become more stiffer up and til today I now have great difficulty tieing up my shoelaces, picking things off the ground and walking more than 500m without pain. If I sit for 5 or 10 minutes I can then continue some more. My quality of life has suffered as I avoid any activity that requires walking. I am lucky that my job is office based and I can sit in the luxury of my desk but there are times I should go to work sites which always put myself in awkward situations having to explain my condition.
I have chosen bilateral although my right hip is probably 1 to 2 years ahead of my left in OA stages. My thinking is to get it over and done with and rehabilitate both hips at the same time evenly. Due to my fear of operations I think I could only endure this once!
I aim to post my progress on this forum and I am looking to read about everyones experiences to hopefully get the confidence and support I need to be ready for this surgery. I am hoping to be able to return to some normal sporting activities by the end of the year but not sure if this is a tough ask. I will be happy just to be able to walk unlimited kilometres.
July 23, 2015
Operation Day 23/7/2015
At 8am I was transferred to the surgery room to have my right hip installed with the BHR. All I remember is seeing Dr. Bose friendly face and before I knew it I was awake in the recovery room. Waking up was fine and my first words were “is it finished?” as I was so surprised it was over so quickly.
When I awoke, I had very little pain as a nerve block was in use and I generally felt alert and ok. Dr. Bose visited and said everything went perfectly which made me feel at ease.
The PT came at one stage and I talk about 6 steps with a walking frame. The legs felt ok but it was the dizziness that made me stop.
I spent 6 – 8 hours in the recovery room and I was keen to get back to my room and watch movies on the flat screen but I was told I must pass urine first. I didnt think it would be a problem but it was. I struggled for a few hours and insisted it would be easier from my room. I thought it was more nerves with all the people around but was later told it was the anaesthetic. After a few hours more I finally managed which felt like the biggest achievement for me.
I went to sleep on my back with leg socks compressing and decompressing all night.
July 25, 2015
R BHR (52 mm) post op day 1
The first day after the operation went well. So far I had slept on my back as it was the easiest for now. In the morning after the PT exercises I went for a walk on the frame again. This time no dizziness and I felt that there was no limit to how far I could go. I maintained the exercises during the day and in the afternoon I went again for a walk with the frame, further again.
In the evening I had a higher temperature and after some further pain killers it had subsided.
Snowbound, the leg compressors were soothing as it was like a massage and kept me comfortable during the night:)
This day I awoke well and high temperature had gone. I continued exercises and walking with the frame was painless.
Nerve block was removed in the morning and all medication shifted to oral ingestion. The incision dressing was changed with a waterproof type and I now plan to shower myself. I am also able to get in and out of bed on my own and therefore going to the toilet is now normal.
Post operation x-ray was taken and the results were excellent.
Each day feeling better but wondering now how movement will feel like after left hip resurfacing on Tuesday.
As each day progresses becoming more confident and stronger. Walked on crutches and at first itvfelt uncomfortable but more due to lack of skill using them In the afternoon they started to become a part of my walking as confidence grows.
Anyway back to square one tomorrow as left side gets done. All tests completed just that haemoglobin on the low side (9) and likely blood transfusion may take place.
Finally the hardest part for me is now over and I am now an official bilat hippy
Everything went well today and so far left leg feels quite good and strong.
Now for a good rest and the start of a new life begins
I think a very good decision to recover by the sea near Chennai in the Ideal Beach Resort as per recommendations. I have taken to walking along the beach still on 2 crutches but pushing the distance a little further each time. The hot days and seaside is a healing in itself.
My right leg feels perfect but my left hip feels like there is a “bubble” around the hip region and taking slower to recover from what my right did to now. In fact my right feels after 13 days better than pre-op!!
Has anyone had this bubble feeling near the hip post surgery before? What exercises best bring it down?
Also after walking I only get swelling in the left foot/ankle but not on the right which I also find interesting why? The swelling goes down after a good nights sleep.
I have finally returned home from Chennai and back at work already. I drove my car without difficulty and getting in and out is no problem.
I have been following the PT religiously and also have been walking each day now about 2km. There is just slight stiffness in the left leg thigh region which if anything has slowed a fast recovery. It is possible that this was due to the fact that it was my good leg previously and was taking the majority of the load pre-op making the muscles tighter.
I am still nervous to walk long distances without both crutches which now are more or less like hiking poles for me. I do try some baby steps without crutches and just need to build confidence. All I need is a surface to touch or hold and I walk around my house or office without crutches.
My biggest surprise was the lack of swelling as it only occurred for a few days in the left foot after my walks and then disappeared all together in subsequent days. From what I have read people have swelling for weeks and have endured a lot of icing and cold packs. This was not an issue at all for me and swelling went down after a good night sleep.
All in all recovery is well on the way and I am in no rush to fast track any healing process.
I had very little swelling after both operations (5 days apart) and I only experienced swelling in the feet (mainly left) only after a long walk in the first 5-8 days after the last operation. I did not use any ice and went to bed with feet elevated (on a pillow) and woke in the mornings with the swelling gone. I did’nt have any further swelling after these days and my walking also had increased in distance.
September 14, 2015
I am now over 6 weeks after bilateral resurfacing and I am still worried to walk long distances without both my crutches. With both crutches I have been walking up to 6km (could go further) and usually average 3km a day.
I find that without crutches I walk with a limp on my left leg (still) and I am worried if I dont use the crutches I will develop the wrong muscles and have this limp longer.
October 2, 2015
It is now close to 9 weeks since surgery and my recovery has been going great. I was initially worried about tightness in my left hip from what I had assumed was a form of bursitis but this is steadily decreasing and no longer becoming an issue for me.
I have stopped using crutches a week ago totally. I have gone from 2 crutches to no aids as I feel stable now and can walk up and down stairs without any issues. I am now walking about 1 to 2 km without any issue. I find any longer a bit of stiffness but it subsides after a short rest.
I find now that I am walking without any limp once I get going. It is nearly difficult already to tell that I have had surgery. I was able to stand at a function for close to 5 hours without needing to sit which is the first after many years. I was also able to deliver a 2 day training session without getting back pain the next day since 10 years ago.
November 19, 2015
I am now 3 1/2 months out and now walk without a gait and as far as I need to go – Yippee!! I am amazed by how fast recovery was and feel like I did 10 years ago already. Cant wait to the 6 month period to go up another notch
December 10, 2015
Just a short update, more than 4 months now, I go to a PT 3 times a week and it has helped immensely. I can step up quite high (put my foot on a chair as example) and my walking is now endless. I do 3 km each day. Maybe a bit over doing it at the moment as I did get a right hamstring strain. The PT helped me stretch it out so seems to be ok now.
Looking forward to the new year so I can take it up another notch
February 22, 2016
Its now over 6 months and my activity level is nothing short of amazing. I walk between 4 to 6km each day pain free and I am planning to get back in to tennis in up and coming weeks. I am starting to jog a little but nothing serious yet as I look to make sure all muscles adjust to this new demand on the body. I have not walked like this for over 10 years so it has been a massive change in life style!
April 4, 2016
I find that if I have a lazy weekend (2 to 4 days), no exercise and loads of sitting, I will be quite stiff when I try to walk again. My right hip muscle (possibly the piriformis) will spasm a bit and I would stop walking for 3 seconds and continue again. Depending on how long I have been lazy, the more stops I would have. It usually goes away after the second day of walks but its annoying and a good reminder to be more active.
I also played tennis on the weekend for the first time. It was my biggest active day as I had walked 11.3 km with about 1km of jogging and then in the afternoon played a set of tennis. I had been looking forward to this and although a bit puffed, I managed to with 6-4 against a much younger opponent! I felt ok on the court, a bit nervous at first in chasing the drop shots but I found that I was able to do so without too much strain or pain.
I find that I must maintain regular activity otherwise if I am too lazy, sitting around for 3 or 4 days, then I get cramps in my left side when I go for long walks. I therefore maintain a walk regime of about 7.5km a day and I now include short runs and play tennis on weekends. I will start gold as soon a possible which I believe will be no problems at all.