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Old 10-31-2008, 10:24 AM   #1
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Question Dr. suggests a hip replacement

I am a 47 year old male and I have had a hip problem for over 16 years. My ortho. says that I need a hip replacement but, I could wait until I'm 55 if I think I can manage living with the pain and discomfort. I don't know what to do? Will I be more limited in daily activities? How about possible long term limitations? I enjoy gardening, riding a bike and walking. I have not worked for some time now because my hip started getting worse if I was standing or walking...some times just for a brief period. I was doing construction work and it required climbing ladders or being on roofs, etc. I really love the work but I just can not take the pain nor do I feel safe (at times it feels like my hip is just going to give out). I also, feel fatigued in the hip area. To add to my frustration I have moderate Degenerative Disc Disease in my back. At times I just feel useless and it doesn't help my self esteme being on public assistance. I do want to work again but I am unsure of how or if a hip relacement will benefit me or if I should hold off and wait. If anyone who has had a hip relacement can give me feedback (good or bad )I would be greatfull. Also, what kinds of questions should I be asking?

Thanks

A bad hip in WA

 
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Old 10-31-2008, 07:59 PM   #2
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Smile Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

Waiting to have the surgery until you're 55 would be wasting 8 years of your life. A hip replacement would give you your life back.....pain-free.

You may not want to return to construction work (for the obvious reasons you mentioned), but you will certainly get back to work, gardening, riding your bike, walking. Osteoarthritis of the hip is progressively disabling. Surgery is a no-brainer. Most people regret not having it done sooner.

We who choose to have hip replacement surgery do so because of the unrelenting pain and a desire for a better quality of life. I am 61, have had 2 replacements and work full time. At 47, you have a lot of living to do. Don't wait. Move forward and get that hip done!!

Good luck,
Linda

 
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Old 11-01-2008, 09:15 AM   #3
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

I think if you are in a lot of pain and seriously limited in activities that its time for a replacement. I waited for quite a while and finally realized that my life was getting smaller and smaller. I had my right hip replaced 11 weeks ago and am amazed at how much better it feels. I will have to have my left hip replaced at some point and while I'm not ready to do it yet, I know I won't wait as long as I did for my right hip. I'd say go for the enlarged life, not the smaller life..........you'll see a lot of good info on the process and how people coped on this site.

Maggie

 
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Old 11-02-2008, 08:09 AM   #4
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

My biggest fear is not knowing how having a hip replacement will affect my life? Will I live a normal life or will there be many restrictions? I enjoy being active and my fear is that I'll wind up becoming useless. I pride myself in being independent. I also worry that my degenerative disc disease may affect my hip replacment because I have disc problems in my lower back which at time it becomes hard for me to sit or walk.

 
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Old 11-02-2008, 08:30 AM   #5
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

eleback.....

I understand your fears, but you probably have more limitations now than you would after. Granted, there is a recovery period where you're restricted bending past 90 degrees...but that doesn't last forever. I have hippy friends who ride horses, golf, hike mountains, etc., etc. I had my first surgery done in January and was crawling around on the ground (carefully) by April, as I'm an avid gardener.

Honestly, you will NOT become an invalid/useless. Years ago, before they perfected this surgery, people did. BTW, if you can, try and find a surgeon who has lots of experience in the anterior approach....where they separate the muscles, not cut them. Makes a huge difference in recovery. There are virtually no restrictions with this surgical approach.

As for your back, a lot of the pain there now is coming from the bum hip. I thought I had sciatica when my first hip started acting up. So many will tell you that their back pain eased once the hip was replaced.

I live alone, am extremely independent, and refused to let two bad hips stop me. Sure, I needed some help for the first week post-surgery (and we'd walk you thru that when the time comes), but the surgery is really a miracle.

You will be as independent as you choose to be...enjoying a pain-free life.
We have no control over what genetics throw our way but, if there's a way to fix it, then we fix it.

Good luck and keep us posted,
Linda

 
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Old 11-02-2008, 10:12 AM   #6
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

Everyone said to me, "you'll be so happy you did it,"
and they were right.

so I'm going to say that to you.
"You'll be so happy you did it."

I'm at week 8 (post surgery) friday, and this morning I woke up, and to my surprise
this is the first morning in 8 weeks that I have awakened and not
felt any discomfort.
no such thing as pain.
It's as if I never had a problem, or surgery, for that matter.


so as I said,
"You'll be so happy you did it."

Last edited by PilotGal; 11-02-2008 at 10:14 AM.

 
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Old 11-02-2008, 03:44 PM   #7
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

I am a 50 y.o female and just had a right THR done about 7 weeks ago. I am returning to work as a retail pharmacist at a very busy store this week for 20 hrs., then if everything okay, full time the next week (I work on my feet up to 12 hrs. a shift moving a lot). I am walking almost totally normal right now just working on building up my strength. When I think back on how I tried to work over the past year and do all my barn work and ride and TRY to be normal, so far it has been a true miracle. I even ruptured my left Achilles tendon this past Feb. compensating (I did not know this at the time), for my deteriorated right hip. I truly tried to keep 'soldiering on'.

I feel good enough to ride now, but my surgeon says to wait 2 more months so that everything is more 'scarred, set in'. I am okay with this. With the misery I went through this past year, I can wait. I can start ground work with the horses and I have not felt good enough on my feet to do any ground work for months and months. My surgeon says if no complications by 6 months, I should have no restrictions (I could even go back to running, but at this point, I just want to be able to ride and school my young horses).

The recovery after surgery is a little tough and you have good days and bad days, but almost all good. You know it's done, fixed and you can move on. I never had one reservation about the surgery. I just wanted to be fixed. And, now, I feel like I truly have been and feel the whole experience has hopefully given me a new perspective about taking care of my mind and body!

 
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Old 11-02-2008, 07:47 PM   #8
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

I agree with all other posters. I have been pretty cautious about getting back into old routine--but now I can walk several miles with minimal discomfort (and that comes from my non-operated hip). Operated hip is pain free. I just started back at the gym on a regular basis and have been told I can basically do anything I want so long as I observe a few restrictions. I plan to start swimming soon--was able to swim weeks ago, but hurricane Ike shut down local pool. Now, I'm looking for an indoor pool for winter.

Last weekend, I went shopping at the mall and walked for several hours. Before surgery, I had to sit down every 10 minutes or so and was counting my steps to distract myself from the pain of walking.

I am basically independent and so grateful. I live alone and was worried about how I was going to cope after surgery (see all my numerous questions and posts here) and it's all turned out ok.

Read as much as you can--look at the sticky's at the top of this board titled "6 mos after ..." and do a search for specific topics. Chances are good that others have had questions, concerns that you have and they will be discussed here.

I am so glad that I had the surgery. I'm ok with the idea of surgery on second hip since I can control timing of that surgery. When I'm ready, I'll do it.

Take care,

Maggie

 
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Old 11-03-2008, 09:45 AM   #9
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Arrow Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

I've been visiting this site and I am thankfull to all who have posted to my thread. Needless to say my biggest fear is the surgery itself. At the age of five my family was in a car accident (not our fault) and from that time on until I was sixteen I had undergone many surgeries (primarily facial reconstructive). I was seated in the back on the drivers side (prior to seat belts). That was the side that got hit. Anyways, hospitals bring back bad memories to me. I also have a fear of needles and have read that hip replacement surgery requires blood tranfusions. Not to be a baby...but I guess thats why I have a relunctance. :

 
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Old 11-04-2008, 02:05 AM   #10
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

your doctor should recommend that you go over to the hospital and donate your own blood for the transfusions....
my doc's office didn't prepare me for anything.
i was lucky enough to have a friend that has had two Total Knee Replacements in both knees and she told me what I needed to do before surgery.

and it's very important that you have friends and family to help out the first couple of weeks. you will need help. and then.....
you will begin to improve and before you know it, you'll be doing all the things you did before.. once again.

I haven't tried the mall yet...
I have booked a week's cruise for Christmas...
looking forward to ziplining, cave tubing and hanging with the kids walking in the port cities..

so, go for it, plan for it, read up on everything, and get your friends to help out.

 
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Old 11-04-2008, 05:26 AM   #11
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

Dear Elbeback:

I had my right hip replaced on December 12, 2007 and I was age 78 at the time. Hip replacement does not necessarily include blood transfusions. I didn't need one! And the hip surgeon did not suggest putting my blood in reserve for a possible transfusion. I had no problems with the surgery, recovery, or rehab.

Each person is different in regard to surgery and its results. So many here had been fearful before the surgery and having trouble making up their minds to having it, but came through the surgery, recovery, and rehab, beautifully.

Keep reading and posting here and you will gain a lot of information and encouragement from those who have already had the hip replacement. Read the "6 month Stickies" at the top of the Forum. They are immensely informative and encouraging.

Shirley H.

 
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Old 11-04-2008, 05:37 AM   #12
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

I found a group that specializes in hip resurfacing, a less invasive surgery than hip replacment. I also found an OS that specialized in hip arthroscopy. It turns out that Thomas Bryd doesn't do replacements and Craig Morrison doesn't do hip arthroscopy but when Byrd feels hip replacement is appropriate he refers to Morrison. Interestingly enough when I said I wanted to see if I was a candidate for hip arthroscopy Morrison thought the idea was great and referred me to Byrd. I guess Morrison doesn't refer to Byrd very often because a new patient consultation with Byrd usually takes 4-6 months and surgery is not scheduled for another 3-4 months but I had the appointment in less than a month and the surgery was scheduled a couple of weeks after the appointment. The nurse at the hospital told me he rarely did surgery on people from Tennessee (that is where he has his practice) and couldn't believe I was scheduled for surgery so quickly. Based on the results of the surgery Byrd thinks I will have a number of years before I will need to do anything and I may never need hip replacement.

I don't think I could list all his accolades but he wrote the brochures on knee and hip arthroscopy that the AMA publishes for OS's offices and the book on hip arthroscopy that is used in many medical schools. Byrd feels that if more OS were properly trained the results would be more like the results of knee arthroscopy. Thomas Byrd has been doing hip arthroscopy for about 20 years and is convinced that it should be considered before total hip.
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Old 11-05-2008, 01:00 PM   #13
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

Hi Everone,

My mind it set on going through with the surgery. I am having a harder time walking (u all can relate). The pain for me is getting worse and worse too. It feels like a bad tooth ache in the hip. I know I must sound like a coward but that's because I only have had limited information before finding this site. I have to see a Dr. About my left shoulder on Nov. 11 and since my Ortho Dr. is in the same building I might as well get my hip surgrery scheduled.
I've read stories from others on this site about the first three months and how relient I'll be on others for assistance. How will I need them? Will I be able to be by myself? Also, what kinds of devices can be helpfull (thank **** TV remotes were invented). What kinds of things should I have in place before I go in for the oporation

I have been researching hip replacement surgeries and have read up on it somewhat. I just couldn't watch the actual procedure

Thanks for letting me post

 
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Old 11-08-2008, 05:43 PM   #14
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Re: Dr. suggests a hip replacement

Check out the stickies at the top of the board. There are several threads (including one of mine) that deal with question of what you will need for first several weeks out of hospital. You will need someone to stay with you the first few weeks. Anyway, check out the Living Alone thread and others on the board.

Maggie

 
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