Simultaneous bilateral hip replacement 5 weeks ago

Hello friends!

I am 56, and was put on an urgent waiting list for this surgery in December 20 after increasingly difficult pain affecting mostly my left hip. I was very lucky to get a date in mid-Feb, thanks to waiting list initiative funding.

I came home after 48 hours and managed to walk up the 27 stairs to my first floor flat, grown-up children and partner looked after me. I'm now qble to walk without sticks, get up and down sdtairs easilyu, and trying to increase my steps a little bit each day - up to around 5500 now. The original 24 hour gnawing pain in the left hip has gone, thank goodness - the surgeon said I had avascular necrosis, so I guess there was a reason for it being so sore.

BUT I still get pain especially at night and I'm struggling to sleep - it's in my left calf, like the discomfort you get before cramp, but ti doens't turn into cramp. At first I couldn't sleep on iether side which was difficult, but the scars are better now so I can. I've tried pillows between the knees and stretching exercises but I can't seem to get rid of it.

does anyone have any bright ideas?

I'm signe off work (in the NHS) until the end of April, although phasing back with some work form home after Easter - feel terribly guilty about being off, but is this reasonable? I'm not needing strong painkillers any more, but tiredness is a thing, and I seem to have lost confidence out and about.

Comments

  • Poppyjane
    Poppyjane Moderator Posts: 173

    Welcome @JennyBenny to the online community,

    You have very recently had bilateral hip replacement and are managing without sticks and increasing your step count daily. Your concern is discomfort in your calf especially at night and tiredness is also a factor.

    I hope this link will prove useful to you. I know deferred pain can be a post operation issue and some of our members use the new long hot water bottles for comfort .

    I think that you are doing amazingly well, I had a hip replacement three months ago and wonder if you are setting your goals a bit too high and pushing yourself because you are feeling the need to get back to support your NHS colleagues. Be kind to yourself, listen to your body and maybe

    some time spent in relaxation before bedtime will help your sleep experience.

    Please take time to browse the forums and chats, there is a wealth of information available and lots of members who are more than happy to share their experiences with you.

    We look forward to hearing from you again,

    Take care

    Poppyjane (moderator)

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,298
    edited 28. Mar 2021, 18:46

    Hi @JennyBenny wow, both at once! That must be tough going! While the operation is "routine" these days, and the relief almost instant, do remember that this is a major trauma for your body to recover from. You've just had two of the main loadbearing joints in your body cut out and replaced.

    Do NOT feel guilty about taking time off. Are you trying to attain superhero status?? Again, you've just had Major Surgery, and your body needs to recover. That's why you feel tired, and given that you're adapting to two new joints at once, it's no wonder your confidence has take a knock! Give yourself time to recover, THEN think about going back to work. Your surgeon won't thank you if you ruin his good work by overdoing it trying to please everyone and salve your conscience.

    I know you will have listended to your surgeon, but 5,500 steps in less than 6 weeks seems an awful lot. While it must be tempting to try to get back to pre-arthritis fitness levels, I'm wondering if this is the source of your pain at night - you're just overdoing it? Perhaps scale it back for a bit and see if that helps.

    The other thing that comes to mind is deep vein thrombosis (DVT). My sister has had that twice in her calf muscles, although I'm not sure if that was related to her knee replacement surgeries, but in her case it was twice dismissed as muscle strain, and both times she ended up in hospital having it treated as an emergency. You might want to get this checked out rather than hope it will pass.