General chatter - need some hip replacement facts, please

03-19-2012, 04:14 PM
Just wondering if anyone's had any actual experience with a hip replacement, such as having had one yourself or cared for a family member who had one?

My mom will be having one May 1st. We're wondering what the reality is regarding getting back to normal living. The pamphlet we received says she might be driving again about 3 weeks after the surgery. Is that what reality has shown to be true? (she can't drive now, due to the hip pain and instability)

When will she be able to do her own shopping, etc?

I'm just kinda trying to plan out our summer, as I've been taking care of her shopping, cleaning, etc., since October and the surgery was delayed because my sister (who does not live here and hasn't been helping) wants to come stay with her for the 3 or 4 days after the surgery, but they are taking a vacation next week, which is when it was originally scheduled, so Mom had them change her surgery and the earliest she can now have the surgery is May. (yes, I'm a little peeved, as they've already had 3 vacations since October & we've not been able to go anywhere in 2 years)

So, we know that some of the estimates on healing are guesses based on very healthy patients and are wondering what others have actually experienced?

Thanks for any info you can share!

03-19-2012, 08:44 PM
Hi Ronnie

My mom had hers at 37 (I was 12... so this was 16 years ago). She was very healthy, it was a congenital defect.

My mom was in a wheelchair for almost 6 months, is this a full hip replacement? There was now way she could drive in 3 weeks.

03-19-2012, 09:03 PM
Hi Ronnie, I know of an excellent place where you can get some good advice and follow up caring. The place is called Bonesmart.

It is run by Josephine who has been dealing with hip and knee replacement problems and was attending at the first ever hip replacement that was done.

03-20-2012, 12:04 PM
Sacha & Emaline-Thank you for the info & link! I'm getting lots of good info at that site. Yes, my mom is having a total hip replacement-the doc said her's is the worst hip he's ever seen and he doesn't know how she's made it this long, considering the pain and lack of mobility. That's a long story, but we gave up trying to get Mom to go to doctors before things get too bad a long time ago. I kinda thought that the 3 week thing might be a little optimistic, but not sure how to communicate that to Mom without causing an issue, so will be asking the doc to clarify a few things at her pre-op physical this Friday.

Thank you both!:D

03-20-2012, 12:19 PM
Hi Ronnie,

Sorry, I neglected to mention one part (hey it was 16 years ago), but my mom had an allergic reaction to the anesthesia (RARE, I promise) and also had a heart attack during the procedure. So, in hindsight, that is why she was on bedrest/wheelchair for 6 months and not perhaps the cause of the surgery. I don't wish to alarm you but it was a very rare complication and due to her own allergies, not typical of hip replacements (would have been the same for a knee cap, a cesearean, whatever).

So, 3 weeks IMO still too optimistic (after all 6 weeks is recommended after a cesearean!!!).

03-20-2012, 01:05 PM
the reason 6wks is recommended for a caesarian is because major core muscles have to be cut and they have to heal properly.

with a hip replacement, it's not so much the muscles that are being cut, just the bone taken out and replaced. the muscles ideally would remain in situ for the most part or they're disconnected, more like, not actually cut in half like with a caesarian.

i know a guy had a knee replacement and he was walking within 3wks (although he was using a cane for much longer). he said it was a bit painful but nowhere near as painful as the arthritis had been.