The Edmonton Hiking/Walking Meetup Group Message Board › Bob's Hip Replacement Update Week 3

Bob's Hip Replacement Update Week 3

Bob R.
user 7398756
Edmonton, AB
Post #: 19
Hi Everyone,

I have been corresponding with some of you since June 16, but others have been left out. So here’s my status report for all.

My hip replacement operation was three weeks ago today, on the afternoon of Friday, June 20. Everything went perfectly that day, except that I missed the most interesting part, when they cut into the side of my left buttock, forcibly dislocated my hip joint, cut off the “ball” on the end of my femur, and ground away parts of my pelvis and what was left of my leg bone to make room for the metal replacement parts. (I assume this required the use of noisy power tools, but alas, I missed it all.) I went into the operating room fully awake. The operation was done under spinal anesthesia, and they gave me something that left me feeling like I’d had a short nap, so I wouldn’t remember any of the excitement. I was awake, aware, and talking again before I was wheeled out of the operating room about and hour and a half after it all started. One of the attendants took four photos with my phone, of the bone piece and grindings that were sent off to a tissue donation program before I woke up.

Back in my room, I stood up from my bed and made a short walk to the window and back, using my walker, within just a few hours after the operation was over.

I stayed in the Orthopedic Surgery Centre over the weekend and came home on Monday just before lunch time. My time in hospital was fully occupied with learning things like how to use my walker and crutches, and how to inject myself with anticoagulant medication. For various reasons, I had a lot of unnecessary pain, and I only got about 6 or 8 hours of sleep over the three nights, in total. But I did get to go out on my own for two short walks on the sunny hospital grounds with my crutches - alone.

Since coming home, I have been out to Zocalo, my favourite eatery/greenhouse/hangout, about a block away, every day. Overall, my recovery is going fantastically. I’m now doing more exercises every day than I was doing before the operation. I’m now walking with only one crutch, and have been on 15-block walks (over 1k, I think) in the neighbourhood most days (in fact, it was 20 blocks today).

My swelling and pain are about 95% gone now. But I still have small bits of bleeding along one part of my incision. The staples were removed (24 of them, totally painless) a week ago today, but it’s not uncommon for minor bleeding to continue for some time, especially since I’m on (self-injected) anticoagulant to reduce the risk of blood clots migrating from my legs to my lungs, heart, or brain. So I have a small bandage I have to change every other day.

I’m expecting that when I go back for my 6-week reassessment on August 6, I'll be given the go-ahead to drive my own car. I’ll probably also be given the okay to switch from crutches to cane (which I’m not sure I’ll even need, by then) and move up to a more intensive muscle-rebuilding physio regime for the next 6 weeks and beyond. Unless something sets me back (like pushing to hard, too soon?) between now and then, I’m hoping to be able to resume most of my normal outdoor activities by about the 3-month mark, in late September or early October. Maybe I won’t be up to 10km distances right then, but I expect to be working my way up toward that - and beyond.

And finally, now that my left hip is on the mend, I can pay closer attention to how my right hip is moving and feeling. So far, the signs are very positive. When X-rays first showed my arthritis on the left side was “severe” (about 2 years ago), the right side was classified as “moderate”. As my operation date grew near, I thought I could detect that my right hip was losing flexibility and range of motion, similar to the left side, even though there wasn’t the same level of pain. But now that I’m into recovery on the left, the right side doesn’t seem so restricted any more. So now I’m hopeful that I may not need a second hip replacement any time soon, if ever. (Another operation might be OK, but another 3 days in hospital would not!)

Thanks for caring,
Andrew G.
user 147137272
Edmonton, AB
Post #: 1
Hi Bob: Thank you for the update and good luck with the recovery. Please let me know if I can help in any way. Having had both hips done some years back has allowed me to walk without pain. All the best. Andrew
Louise L.
user 30591412
Edmonton, AB
Post #: 3
Great news Bob on how your recovery is progressing, have a great summer,
Tammy H.
user 120700172
Edmonton, AB
Post #: 1
I'm thrilled to hear your recovery is progressing so nicely Bob--and of course also that your perspective continues to be positive and healing in nature!! Continue taking care, and please contact me if there is any way I can help. Tammy: 780-266-0537.
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