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Old 06-13-2009, 10:17 AM   #31
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

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Originally Posted by bossygirl View Post
I do hope all went well for you Ken with your operation. You mentioned about not being able to raise your leg after operation for couple days. Me too and it was scary, felt like a thousand pounds and was hard to get to the bathroom.
I am almost 11 weeks now post THR, I have been doing too much walking and standing on legs and things and maybe not enough strengthening exercises as I am usually too tired then. The last few days I have had terrible pain in and around the new hip and buttock. Do you guys think too much walking and moving is the wrong thing? I have overdone it but I am not one to sit still. I am still using the cane and that has been hard also on my hand, shoulder and too much leaning. I had rented the walker so that went back after a month as I was advised to do. I am a bit concerned, also I cannot seem to get a good night's sleep since the operation. I usually sleep on my side and twist and turn alot and I find discomfort and can't seem to settle down. I don't want to take sleeping pills as I already usually take half a Percocet at night for pain. I go back to work on Monday, 4 hours a day for first week and is all sitting, plus about a 10 minute walk each way to subway to get there. I feel a bit anxious but sure this is normal. I have appreciated all the information and advice from people here so please let me know what you think.

Hi bossy girl:

Gee - my reaction is that maybe you are doing TOO MUCH walking and standing. It is almost 11 weeks post surgery for you and that still is early in your recovery - in my lay person's opinion. It sounds to me like your body is telling you that you are doing too much. My PT people told me to not do the thigh strengthening execises more than once a day, but that walking was good. However, you might be doing too much of walking and standing.

I had purchased a "leg lifter" that was just wonderful to get my operated leg in and out of bed and also the car. I recommend that to all who are yet to have their THRs. I could do without that after a time but don't remember just when that was. I wasn't in any hurry to ditch it. Now I have it for the next THR which I plan to have around the end of this August, or so.

Since I am not employed, being an old gal, I of course had more time after my THR to rest and take very good care of myself after the THR. I am lucky in that.

I feel for those who have to go back to work.

It was quite a while after my THR before I could return to sleeping on my side. I can't sleep on my back, either, but had to after the surgery. My surgeon told me when I could do that and I also forget just when that was.

I think you need to slow down a little, girl! Try that and see if it helps. You aren't running a race, you know.

Shirley H.

 
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Old 06-13-2009, 10:33 AM   #32
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Bossygirl,

I too am 11 weeks post having my hip replaced. I went to see my doctor on Wednesday and he was shocked that I am still limping, still having a lot of pain in my groin, and still using a cane occasionally. His response was "Don't be my first failure!" Gee whiz, sorry if I'm throwing off his statistics! Anyway, he told me the problems were probably because of my being in such poor shape going into the surgery (due to my arthritis my activity level had gone down to almost nothing besides work). He also told me to ride a stationary bike - a lot! Oh well, I guess I'll ride a bike! He did take x-rays and said everything looks fine.

As for work, I went back to work 6 weeks ago - half days at first. I'm back full time and do a lot of walking there. By the end of the day I'm usually bushed and look forward to coming home and resting. Good luck going back and definitely don't feel bad about taking your cane with you - especially if you have to ride the subway, people will be a lot more careful around you if they see you with a cane.

 
Old 06-13-2009, 12:41 PM   #33
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Dear windieone:

Just curious - did you do those on-the-bed thigh exercises before your hip surgery? I received a huge booklet from the hospital about a month prior to my surgery and faithfully did those excercises every day - a lot of them - and then at the rehab center did the very same exercises twice a day along with the other "hip girls". It might be that my thigh muscles were in great shape before surgery because of those exercises?
Thigh muscles still in the same great shape from just walking a lot every day - but not outside walks because my other hip now needs replacement and is causing me to limp. Replaced hip is perfect - no problems, no limping from that one.

Shirley H.

 
Old 06-14-2009, 08:13 AM   #34
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Hi Shirley and WindieOne,

Shirley, I think you are right and I need to relax abit about it all. I went to a couple outdoor music events that involved standing on concrete to long and out of town for a couple nights getaway that involved too much walking, shopping and going.
Windieone, That was not very nice what your doc said to you. As everyone says to me, it is still relatively early in your recovery and we are all different. I have a feeling I as well was not in good shape going into the operation and for same reason, arthritis was so limiting to my life. I was not told to do any exercises before operation and did not go to rehab, just straight home. I think so many factors make a difference. I sure know now and would advise anyone going in for THR to strengthen your upper body and legs before surgery to help the after part.
I think taking my cane to work on subway will help also as that is only way to get a seat at times.
Back to work tomorrow, I am just 50 and work with alot of younger people and feel many do not understand the healing time and process you go through with this operation. I sure did not before. Feel a little anxious because my sleeping is so poor and usually don't get up early so will be hard to get back to a routine.
Take care to you guys,have a great day and thanks for everything!

 
Old 06-14-2009, 01:06 PM   #35
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Dear bossygirl:

The only special exercises I ever did for my replacement hip were those on-the-bed, pressing down on the mattress type exercises, both before the surgery and right after for the 2 weeks stay at the rehab center. They sent me there because I have no one at home to help me right after surgery. I had thought I wanted to go right home after surgery but during the hours after the surgery I realized that there was no way!

The exercises consist of just pressing as hard as you can down on the mattress at the knee and then the next set at the heel and hold for a count of 15, repeating each set 15 times. Also there was the "ankle pump" which is lifting the foot up and pushing it down 15 times and doing a set of this 15 times. Do this on both legs.

It is amazing what these do for the thigh muscles. If you put a hand on your thigh you can feel the muscles tighten. These truly are wondering - working exercises and take very little time and energy. Have you done them yet? I have never been athletic, but mowed a large lawn and shoveled a two garage driveway for decades. Guess they really gave me good legs.

My hospital booklet shows several more exercises but I didn't do any of them. My surgeon said after surgery "No abductions". Abductions are moving the operated leg away from the midpoint of the body. I had to argue with one PT about this even though he said he always did this with hip people. I said, well, my surgeon says "no" so I won't do them. I won that round! We have to listen to our surgeons.

It is hard to get used to rising on time to go back to work. I sure understand how you feel about this. After a week or so, you will be back in the saddle! I had paid work for years after college but now of course am "retired" - but as women our work at home never ends.

Shirley H.

 
Old 06-15-2009, 05:24 AM   #36
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Dear Bossygirl, SilverSwan, and everyone concerned about THR recovery on this board,

I am 6 weeks out after TLHR and I feel great. I am practicing how to walk without a cane, which is a challenge. I know how you feel, bossygirl, I, too, want to walk unassisted, but it takes time and really stong muscles. Just keep working to strengthen the muscles but don't overdo. Your body will retaliate when you do. I find that I can't ride in a car more than 2 hours without being down and out the next day. I can however, cook, clean, take care of the dog, work (on the computer from home in the summer), and I just weeded one of my flower gardens on my kneeler for about 5 minutes.....small advances, but they mean alot. I always have my cane handy, but try to walk without at least a little bit every day. I am still doing physical therapy twice a week for two more weeks. That is really helping. I have no pain and do not take meds. I am 61 and was in such horrible pain for 4 years, that my struggle now seems like a joke.
I sleep great and have been able to lay on my operated side just two nights ago for about 15 minutes at a time (what a gift!!!).
So, Bossygirl, I guess what I am saying is that you should not OVERDO IT. Rest as much as you can but try to challenge the muscles. Do things slowly and think about what you are doing, always. Part of this recovery is psychological! Soon you will be better than you ever were.

Kathy

 
Old 06-15-2009, 05:58 AM   #37
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Dear bossygirl:

In detailing the on-the-bed exercises, I forgot to include one of them - this is: squeezing each side of the buttocks, one at a time - 15 times each, holding each squeeze 3 seconds. Do sets of five. I think I misspoke about the number of sets per session in my last post. Sorry about that.

These simple easy exercises sure did the job for me. I went into hip replacement surgery having done them faithfully for several weeks previously. In the rehab facility they had us exercising our arms, too, but I really didn't need that. The thighs are the most important muscles for using the legs and hips, in my opinion. For arm exercise we had those therabands - stretchy bands to use various ways, and also a machine where we used a weighted pulley. They worked us very hard twice a day and also had us walking in the halls every session and we walked to and from meals every day, using a walker. Very good PTs and they rehabbed us ladies very well. We didn't have any men hip replacement patients while I was there.

I have talked about the on-the-bed exercises a lot, on this board, but have done so because they are so effective. Sorry for boring those already in the know!

Shirley H.

 
Old 06-15-2009, 05:29 PM   #38
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Bossy, As a cripple of many years I have a few tidbits of advice for your sadness and impatience and for the people at work who may ( or may not actually ) feel like your'e taking it easy.
Any major surgery is life altering. You change as much emotionally as you do physically. All sorts of emotions play a part in the recovery process and the ones that make you feel down I believe come to be to make you give yourself a hug when you need it, and to seek out others who can relate to your pain and give you a hand up.
You should be very ,very proud of yourself for coming as far as you have in these 11 weeks. Everyone heals at a different pace and whatever healing you've accomplished is what's right for your body. Don't let anyone intimidate you at work or anywhere else for that matter. You carry that cane with pride that you are able to do what others just take for granted. You will walk without it one day but until then don't look at it as a crutch look at it as a helping hand, and by all means if you still need it when it's time to go back to work carry it with you. Often I have found that others are much more understanding when they see that you are in need of a device. I think it frightens them and they feel thankful that it isn't they who are the needy one.
Cheer up, sweetie . We're all in this darned boat and we're all gonna make it out just fine.
Time is a healer of all things... Hugs

 
Old 06-16-2009, 07:37 AM   #39
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

I can't add much to what Shirley and the others have said (but let me put my two cents in anyway). How fast you recover does depend in part on how active you were before the surgery. But, there's no real "right way" to do rehab. In addition to walking on the streets, I'd recommend pool walking if you have access to a pool. I've posted other places here the gym routine I was given when I was first released to go to a gym. You might check it out and see if it could be useful to you.

As for using the cane, I used it for quite a while even after I didn't technically need it. It's very handy for crowds and does give people the message that you need a little room. So, I'd probably carry it in the subway or on buses for quite a while for the psychological security and for balance. I still keep my cane in my car--use it only when I take my dogs to the local dog park and I see a few notorious jumpers. (Dogs, for some reason, love to jump on me). The cane alerts owners that they need to curb their dogs enthusiasm and it gives me something to plant when the dogs jump. I feel a little less worried about being knocked over.

I'm like Shirley and have a perfect right hip post operation--no pain whatsoever--but will need to have other hip done eventually. I'm just not ready to have surgery yet. Just hitting my one year anniversary for right hip in August.

As for sleeping, it took me forever to get a good nights rest. After a few weeks, when I couldn't stand it anymore, I gingerly tried sleeping on my side. I could only lie on my side a few minutes at a time. Now, I don't have any problems at all. Still hate sleeping on my back!

Hang in there.

Maggie

 
Old 06-16-2009, 10:44 AM   #40
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Hi Maggie:

It is amazing how our two hip replacements and recoveries/rehabs been so similar. I too began sleeping on my right side just a few minutes at a tiime and very gradually was able to sleep a little longer on that new hip. Now more than a year after my replacement, I can sleep for hours that way. Healing really does come slowly but surely.

Shirley H.

 
Old 06-24-2009, 04:48 AM   #41
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Well it is now 12 weeks post THR and I still have too much pain and cannot walk on my own without cane. I feel discouraged and wonder if it will ever go away? Did other people take this long as reading some posts here, sounds like most people are free of cane and pain at this stage. Is it due to not doing enough exercises? I am just 50, went back to work last week at 4 hours a day and this week is 6. I have a fair distance to walk to subway back and forth and by the time I am home, have alot of pain and not much up to more exercises. Is this normal or should I go back to see my doctor? Maybe it is just me, but I just wish I could walk properly on my own and not have this continuous pain. I do not want to be jacked up on pain meds all the time either. If anyone has insight for me, please advise and thanks for listening.

 
Old 06-25-2009, 05:31 AM   #42
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Dear Bossy,
Please don't feel so down. You will walk without the cane soon. It sounds as if you are pushing yourself too hard. You need to pull back. Just doing things slowly is a good thing for healing. You do need to do the exercises because they are different from walking to the subway. The exercises stretch the right muscles and allow correct healing. Try to replace the heavy duty pain killers with something less strong and not narcotic. You may have some pain because of overdoing. You are only 3 months out of major surgery. Take it easy on yourself.

Kathy

 
Old 06-25-2009, 07:55 AM   #43
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Re: Feeling depressed 8 weeks post THR

Quote:
Originally Posted by bossygirl View Post
Well it is now 12 weeks post THR and I still have too much pain and cannot walk on my own without cane. I feel discouraged and wonder if it will ever go away? Did other people take this long as reading some posts here, sounds like most people are free of cane and pain at this stage. Is it due to not doing enough exercises? I am just 50, went back to work last week at 4 hours a day and this week is 6. I have a fair distance to walk to subway back and forth and by the time I am home, have alot of pain and not much up to more exercises. Is this normal or should I go back to see my doctor? Maybe it is just me, but I just wish I could walk properly on my own and not have this continuous pain. I do not want to be jacked up on pain meds all the time either. If anyone has insight for me, please advise and thanks for listening.

Dear bossygirl:

It seems to me that walking a fair distance to your job, working 4-6 hours a day, and then walking back home the fair distance, is quite an ambitious program for only 3 months post surgery. I think all that walking you are doing is enough, that you don't need to exercise too. Just my lay person's opinion. Walking is the very best exercise after a THR they told us at rehab.

Your continuous pain may be your body telling you that you are doing too much.

I used my walker quite a while after hip replacement - I really couldn't tell you how long it was before I stopped using it around home, just for balance and security (I have a cat). I just know that I wasn't worried about how long this would take. Of course, being an old girl and not gainfully employed, I have the luxury of staying home. (I do all my own work.)

My general impression is that you are very early in your recovery and rehab.
Since you have a job outside the home, I realize that you cannot "baby" yourself, but surely you can allow yourself the comfort and safety of using a cane. I still, after more than a year, take my cane along when I go shopping - just in case I start getting tired and need that support. (I also head for the shopping carts right away, because they make good "walkers". )

I do think that, all along here, you have been very impatient, and this is not a criticism. I too have always been very independent and active and it is/was hard for me, too, to slow down and let my body determine my level of activity or use of walking/support aids. I also did paid work for years after college so I know about work, too! And who of us doesn't feel reluctant to sport a cane! It somehow has old age connotations to some of us - like me, for instance!

Shirley H.

 
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