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Old 08-07-2009, 01:53 PM   #1
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Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

Hello. My husband is having his left hip replaced. Which side of the bed should he use when getting in and out? I need to decide which room he will recover in. Will his surgical leg come off the bed first, or his "good" leg? Thanks!

 
Old 08-07-2009, 02:43 PM   #2
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

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Originally Posted by eyeblazy View Post
Hello. My husband is having his left hip replaced. Which side of the bed should he use when getting in and out? I need to decide which room he will recover in. Will his surgical leg come off the bed first, or his "good" leg? Thanks!

Dear eyeblazy:


GREAT QUESTION!! I have been thinking about that very question, because I am going to get my left hip replaced at the end of this month - almost 2 years ago I had my right hip done.

My conclusion for myself:

I sleep on the left side of my bed. With my replaced right hip - I used my purchased "leg lifter" to grasp my right foot with my right hadn, and then, to get both legs off the bed, I held both legs level with each other, grabbed my purchased bed rail at the head of the bed with my left hand, and moved both legs off the bed, together. Keep them parallel. I do have a grab rail on the other side of the bed, but think I will probably still sleep on the left side of the bed. I envision using the leg lifter in the same way, probably holding it in my left hand. However, I might find that I can't get up without using the grab rail, and so have to sleep on the right side of the bed. Time will tell.

I hope that explanation is not too complicated. If it doesn't work sleeping on the right side I will have to sleep on the left side of the bed. I am rather ambidextrous, since I play the piano and do a lot of things with my left hand even though I am right handed.

You could have your husband practise up ahead of time. Be sure to purchase a leg lifter. You won't be sorry. You won't need it very long, for both getting in and out of bed and your car, but it is worth a million dollars while you need it. I find the short grab rails at the head of each side of the bed just wonderful. I still use the grab rail - with an arthritic hip, I need the support to get up and down because my un-replaced left hip is not strong.

You can purchase a leg lifter on the internet or at a local medical suppy store. They are light and easy to use.

Get as many aids as possible so that your husband can be very independent and not have to ask you to help him do anything. You will both be happier.

Shirley H.

 
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Old 08-07-2009, 10:06 PM   #3
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

Thanks a lot for the info, Shirley. It is kind of hard to visualize, but I appreciate the tips on the leg lifter and side rails. I know this sounds dumb, but when you say "right" or "left" side of the bed, is that when you're lying on it; you know: your left, your right side.

Good luck with your surgery.

 
Old 08-08-2009, 12:08 AM   #4
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

left refers to the left side, right to the right side - when lying IN the bed.
i was advised, when i had my first (left) hip replaced, to lie on the left side of the bed, due to ease of getting in and out. so the operated leg is the last to go in when getting in to bed, and the first out when getting out of bed. in fact i slept in a single bed in the spare room for about a month immediately after surgery as we found that was best for both of us - i wasn't worried about disturbing my husband (i found sleeping difficult lying on my back) and he wasn't worried about disturbing or hurting me. the same applies with a single bed though - left hip surgery, in and out of the left side of the bed.
your husband will be shown techniques for getting in and out of bed, and other manoevers, safely, when he's in hospital. good luck.

sue

 
Old 08-08-2009, 06:14 AM   #5
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

Not dumb at all - the sides of the bed, for me, refer to when one is standing at the foot of the bed. I see liverpool sue means when lying IN the bed. Goes to show the difficulties of communication.

Mainly, for me, it means, use the leg lifter for the operated leg - keep both legs together and swing them both in or out of the bed.

 
Old 08-08-2009, 06:19 AM   #6
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

I see that I did just the opposite of what liverpool sue did - my operated leg was the first in and the last out. Maybe this is just an individual variation that worked for me. ARRGH - this gets more and more confusing. Guess it comes down to finding out what works for you. I do recommend practising before surgery to get a routine that works for you.

Shirley H.

 
Old 08-08-2009, 07:26 AM   #7
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

yikes, shirley, the plot thickens
i should have made it clearer in my post that i was just referring to my description and not yours.
interesting on the differences of getting in and out of bed - maybe it's because of you lifting both legs at the same time? or using a leg-lifter, which is not something i ever needed or used?
poor old eyeblazy will be totally confused now!!!

sue

 
Old 08-08-2009, 07:42 AM   #8
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

after i had posted, i started to doubt myself, and given that it's 6 years in november that i had my first (left) hip done and my memory isn't what it was, i've done a bit of research. for us in england, according to nhs guidelines, it's the way i described it - operated leg is second to get in making it first to get out, there's a definate technique to it, and you get in and out of bed on the same side as the operated leg i.e left leg, left side of bed.
phew, am exhausted after all that so will go and lie down in a darkened room now - but i refuse to say which side i'll lie on

sue x

 
Old 08-08-2009, 08:09 AM   #9
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

Yes, liverpool sue, poor eyeblazy must be reeling by now with all this confusing which leg first talk.
I too am getting confused and weary - but while making a batch of chili a little while ago, I suddenly remembered how I started getting in and out of bed the way I do. The bed at the rehab center made it necessary to do it that way - the other side of the bed did not have enough space because there was another patient bed there. And I didn't have my leg lifter at the rehab center - had to get help getting in and out of bed from an aide.
Hope we both recover our sanity after all this. But it is good to hear the ins and outs of hip replacement recovery.

And yes, liver pool sue, I keep my legs parallel getting in and out of bed - not the one leg at a time method. No one told me how to do it. I just found my own way.


Shirley H.

 
Old 08-08-2009, 09:03 AM   #10
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

Hi liverpool sue:

Just remembered something else about getting in and out of bed. (Oh, no, spare us!)

After the surgery my hip surgeon said "No abductions". Abduction is moving the operated leg away from the midline.

So that explains how I came to keeping both legs parallel getting in and out of bed. (Enough already)

Shirley H.

 
Old 08-10-2009, 08:43 PM   #11
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

Wow. I've been gone a few days and missed this thread. Just closed my eyes to remember what I did after right hip surgery and got dizzy. But I think I did it the same way Sue did. Operated leg was last in, first out. So, I slept on right side of bed (as determined when you are in the bed) or left side of bed( as determined when standing at foot of the bed)....sorry...just couldn't resist. On Shirley's recommendation, I got a hand rail and that helped a lot to have something to grab onto when getting in and out of the bed. Lots of online catalogues have them. Mine has a plate that slips between mattress and box springs and can be moved to either side of the bed. Whenever I do my left hip, I'm not sure what I'll do because I always sleep on the right side of the bed (as determined when in the bed) and not sure I'll like switching sides....will probably just do whatever is easiest at the time........Maggie

Last edited by Larimergirl; 08-10-2009 at 08:43 PM.

 
Old 08-11-2009, 12:38 AM   #12
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

.....just when i thought it was safe to check-in again

sue

 
Old 08-11-2009, 04:27 AM   #13
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

Quote:
Originally Posted by liverpool sue View Post
.....just when i thought it was safe to check-in again

sue
Hi Sue:

Hee hee! I have just about decided I am going to have to switch sides of the bed I sleep on after my left hip replacement. I have pondered this quite a bit and realized I need to use the bed rail/grab bar in getting in and out so have to have the hand next to the rail for grabbing.

I think I will need the assistance since the new hip leg won't be very strong.

Guess every one has to do this in and out of bed thing his or her own way.

Shirley H.

 
Old 08-11-2009, 04:34 AM   #14
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

Hi Maggie:

I am so glad that you got the rail/grab bar for the head of your bed. I am thankful for mine every day. I just went ahead and purchased two so don't have to lift the mattress to switch sides of the bed. Have a king size bed now and that mattress is mighty heavy.
I wouldn't take a million dollars for my grab bars - they have made my life so much easier.
I have the pre op hip replacement class this Thursday at the hospital and wonder if I will already know everything -but hope to learn something new and useful. Also look forward to seeing the other patients and wonder if there will be women than men, or what.

Shirley H.

 
Old 02-11-2010, 01:02 PM   #15
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Re: Which side of the bed after hip replacement?

I have just seen this a bit late...I always suggest my patients 'learn' or are taught correct technique for the side they would normally use.
Its very old fashioned and not 'holistic' to teach bad side in good side out. Big soap box subject of mine being an 'old fashioned' nurse who thinks University Nurses need to practicee before they preach. Especially as its them who are of the opinion that 'Old' nurses cant learn new tricks!!

It is also very tiring to hear that patients are STILL being told they must sleep on their back. I will never advocate sleeping off the operated leg at night for fear of it falling into a position where it could dislocate. However if you can sleeping on your hip as long as you do not have more than 2 pillows for your head, using a pillow between your knees for comfort is allowed. Again teaching you how to get into the position safely is no longer 'taught' as they are more interested in getting you out at 3 or 4 days...so dont get me started on how you are supposed to get into the bath rather than strip wash for 6 weeks if you dont have a walk in shower!!!


Why should you create havoc in you bedroom just to suit lazy nurses or therapists!

 
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