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Bit of a shocker

Hi, I’m Liz. 46 active and love scuba diving and hiking. I am recently widowed and have had a lot on my plate recently. Walking has helped to keep me sane during lockdowns but in March my hip started getting really painful... I went to the msk clinic yesterday expecting to be given some physio...instead she said I’ll be getting a full hip replacement! I’m really shocked. It’s been really painful but never imagined it would be straight to full replacement! Apparently it’s severe OA and I’m awaiting to get orthopaedics consultation. I’m guessing with covid backlogs it’ll be a long wait. I wondered if there anyone out there in a similar situation as me? Anyway, nice to find a group where I can find things out about this.

Comments

  • JewelsJewels Posts: 47

    Hi @LizS I'm in the same position as yourself my right hip has really bad wear and tear and my orthopaedic consultant said I need a new hip have you had a mri scan or anything? It was msk that sorted all that out for me this has all happened in the space of a year I'm now waiting for a rheumatoid appointment to see about going on meds I have it in my lower back too and recently I have been experiencing pain in my hand and my feet so trying to get my head around it all feel free to ask anyone anything on here everyone is really helpful and brilliant on here oh and nice to meet you 😊

  • LilymaryLilymary Posts: 624 ✭✭✭

    Hi @LizS , I'm so sorry to hear about your bereavement. That's hard enough to deal with on its own, but the isolation from lockdown, and now reduced mobility and pain, won't be helping at all.

    Part of your story is similar to mine, although I'm a bit older at 61, but previously a very fit fell walker, with a bit of kayaking and horse riding on the side. Long story short, my phsyio had been putting the pain in my leg to various conditions, including general wear, and my hip (and knees) had been grumbling after really long walks for years. But after a fall last March, my GP sent me for an xray and I was put straight on the list for hip replacement, which the pandemic has put on hold. It came as an enormous shock to me, I had no idea it was comimg, and it took a lot of mental adjustment and reducing of horizons. It's important to focus on the things you can still do, rather than mourning those you can't. You also need to keep in mind that this condition is treatable (albeit rather drastically), whereas so many painful conditions can only be managed with drugs. A false hip is never as good as the original healthy version, but you should be able to get much of your mobility back. A friend who's just had hers done is a ski instructor and alpine guide, and she's looking at going back to work when the pandemic's over.

    My last consultation in November (?) indicated an 8 month wait, and that's for those who are already on the list. That would put me at June or July, ie a 16 month wait in all. Some hospitals are working faster than mine (rather regretting getting myself referred to a "centre of excellence" for hip and knee replacements, as I suspect their waiting list is longer). A friend has only just been put on the list at a local hospital, and she's expecting an operation date in May.

    Meanwhile I can barely do anything now. Mine has gone downhill very fast during that time, and I'm almost at the point of using a stick to get me round the house. Even getting into the village for a coffee is slow and painful, and I haven't been able to go for even a short field level walk since last May. My ski-ing friend was still walking the dogs every day!

    Managing the pain meanwhile is key. I'm on Naproxen and cocodamol, which takes the edge off the pain (although these days I'd have to say it barely feels like it makes any difference). There are also exercises you should do to keep the muscles that support your hip in good shape. Have a trawl round this site, and also look at "Let's Move with Leon". Again, unfortunately these exercises just set my pain off again, but that's just me. I reckon I did something drastic during my fall that the Xray hasn't picked up. Others have found the exercises very helpful and can reduce the pain.

    You may be offered a steroid injection meanwhile to keep you ticking over until it's time for surgery. Sadly it made no difference at all with me, but I think I'm in the minority, and you should give it a go. It doesn't mean they're fobbing you off, but hip replacement at the end of the day is all about managing pain, and if they can do it by other means, for a while at least, go with it.

    I hope this helps a bit. This is a great forum, and the information on this site is really helpful, I'm not sure how I would have coped without them. Come on here for a moan, a bit of advice, or a giggle. At least you'll be talking to people who know what arthritis does to your life.

    Take care x

  • LizSLizS Posts: 8

    Thanks for the welcome. @Jewels I had an mri and x Ray two years ago when I was experiencing strange pains in pretty much every joint. I saw a rheumatologist who agreed hi had something going on, but as the mri showed no inflammation I was discharged back to gp. Nothing else was done...fast forward to now, and the new x Ray shows a massive change to the last x Ray. I’ve wondered for a while if I had rheumatoid arthritis as the episode a few years ago had me in a bad way, then cleared up....can you have more than one type of arthritis?

    @Lilymary thanks, I’m sorry you’re on a long wait...I’m prepared for many months on a list as I know many ops were postponed last year...I hope you get the op soon though to get you back on your feet. At the moment I’m still able to go on low level walks and the doc said to keep that up. I also do physio exercises which I think help with flexibility. I have Naproxen, but I also have a high pain threshold...so I New this was bad when it made me swear. Let’s hope we all get sorted soon x

  • JewelsJewels Posts: 47

    Yh I only found out when I come to the forum and now I'm under both ortho and rheumatoid it's a scary ride isn't it hun x

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