The hips are an integral part of your ability to stand and move around. It’s no wonder that it’s a common location for osteoarthritis to set in since your hip is in motion frequently. Not to mention, it’s a weight-bearing joint, which means it takes a lot of pressure on a daily basis. If this condition progresses, you may need hip replacement surgery to remove and replace the damaged joint structures. This procedure is also recommended when your hip is severely damaged from an injury, such as in a car or sports accident.
While you may be optimistic that you’ll regain function in your hip and live with less pain, you might still have a bit of concern about the recovery after the surgery. Fortunately, the recovery is relatively short, and you’ll be able to resume many of your usual activities in a matter of weeks. Fortunately, you can rely on having guidance and support from your orthopedic surgeon even after your surgery.
Here is more information on how recovery following hip replacement surgery will look like.
Depends on the Type of Surgery
You may have either a traditional total hip replacement or a minimally invasive hip replacement. With a total hip replacement, you have a longer incision and more internal tissue that need to heal. With minimally invasive surgery, the surgeon makes smaller incisions to perform the procedure. Generally, the recovery is shorter when you have minimally invasive surgery.
Recovering in the Hospital
Immediately following the procedure, you’ll go to a recovery room. While there, you’ll be monitored to ensure you come out of the anesthesia safely.
After you wake up, you’ll be transported to a hospital room. Typically, you’ll remain in the hospital for two days after a minimally invasive hip surgery. On the other hand, you usually stay two to five days after traditional hip replacement surgery.
Throughout your stay, your team will request you move as much as possible. Your doctor may start you on a blood thinner to prevent clots because you won’t be as active immediately following your procedure.
Additionally, you’ll be given pain medication as needed to keep you comfortable. You might start physical therapy while you’re still at the hospital, as well. You may also receive occupational therapy to learn how to complete daily living activities safely. Moving frequently after your procedure is critical in your healing process.
Recovering at Home and Undergoing Physical Therapy
You will receive a walker or cane to use at home as you recover from surgery. It is important to follow the instructions your surgeon gives you on wound care to prevent infection and complications. The wound will likely heal completely in six weeks since incisions are much smaller than they once were.
Once you return home, you’ll be instructed to rest, eat healthily, get a lot of sleep, and refrain from drinking and smoking. While you cannot exercise, it is important to walk and keep moving as directed by your surgeon.
After a few weeks, your surgeon will ask you to begin physical therapy, which will strengthen your hip, boost recovery, and help you feel better and stronger much more quickly. You will do physical therapy with a therapist as well as at home on your own.
Resuming Daily Activities
You may start driving a few weeks after surgery if you had surgery on the left hip. Your doctor may recommend you wait a month (or more) to drive if you had surgery on the right hip.
You can return to work in as little as two weeks if you have a sit-down job, such as working in an office. However, if you have a job that requires walking or heavy lifting, you’ll need to wait six weeks before returning to work.
Choose Our Orthopedic Surgeon in Kansas City, KS
The experts at Midwest Orthopaedics perform hip replacement surgery on a regular basis. We understand how to perform this procedure in the safest, most effective way possible, so you experience the most relief from your procedure.
For better management of your hip arthritis or if you sustained a hip injury and need surgery, contact Midwest Orthopaedics. Call us at (913) 362-8317, or fill out our online appointment form.