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Considering a Hip Replacement?

Considering a Hip Replacement?

Are you, your parents, or someone you know considering having a hip replacement?  Or maybe you have decided you need one, you just are deciding which surgeon you want to perform the procedure.  It can be slightly overwhelming to consider the procedure and all that goes into it. Like with all things, knowledge is power.  The more you can know and understand going into surgery, the less scary it will be and the more prepared you can be for after surgery.  Here is a list of questions we would recommend asking your surgeon so that you can be as prepared as possible going into the surgery. The bold indicates the question, and the italics indicate the reasons you want to know.

Can you answer a few questions about the surgery? It’s always respectful to make sure they have time to answer some questions. It also can give you an idea of how receptive they are to speaking with you.

Do you recommend subacute rehab following surgery? Subacute rehab will mean a stay of a few days or a few weeks in a rehabilitation facility.  Depending on your home situation, it may be necessary to recover in this facility before returning home.  Other times, if you have enough support at home you may go directly home after the surgery.

What do you recommend for physical therapy following surgery and when would it start? Once you know when your surgeon would like you to start outpatient physical therapy, you can get your appointments scheduled in advance.  This is one less thing you have to think of after surgery and makes sure you can get into the therapist as soon as you need to.

Will the surgery be anterior approach or posterior approach? How much experience do you have in this approach? This is the type of hip replacement surgery. An anterior approach is becoming more common and it is important to know which procedure your doctor will be performing.  Depending on the procedure, you will have different restrictions after surgery.

How long do you predict it will be before she is able to drive? There is usually no exact answer for this, but it will be able to give you a range so you can plan on transportation.

Should I make any lifestyle changes before or after surgery? This is important for before surgery such as weight loss, smoking, diet changes.  Lifestyle changes can make a big impact on how well you do after surgery.

Would pre operative physical therapy be of any benefit? Pre operative physical therapy is often very beneficial to improve your strength and range of motion before surgery, which allows you to recover quicker after surgery.

What equipment do you think I will need after surgery? We at Issa Physical Therapy usually recommend a walker, a cane, a shower chair, and a  “grabber” (tool to pick up objects). Your doctor may also recommend other items that you can have ready before surgery.

You may have other questions as well, but this list is a good place to get started.  Once you know the answers to these questions, you’ll be ready to hit the ground running (almost) right after surgery!  We here at Issa Physical Therapy have a lot of experience with hip replacements, so if you want to know more, feel free to get in touch with one of our physical therapists for a conversation.  

Check out Dr. Tamer Issa's book, Freedom From Neck & Back Pain- Learn to Live an Active Life Without Fear of Pain