No doubt about it, hip replacement is a major procedure that often requires weeks, if not months, of rehabilitation for total recovery. After all, it involves the surgical removal of a painful hip joint and its replacement with an artificial joint often made from metal or plastic components.
While most hip replacement patients can walk within the same or next day of surgery, and most can resume normal activities within the first three to six weeks, recovery times differ vastly from patient to patient and can depend on a number of factors, including:
- Whether you have undergone a partial or a total hip replacement
- The amount of rehabilitative exercise you undertake
- How well you maintain a healthy diet and body weight
- The steps you take to prevent blood clots
- How you have prepared your household for reduced mobility
More than 300,000 total hip replacement operations are performed each year in the U.S. And while the safety of the procedure has dramatically increased since it was first performed in the 1960s, its success still hinges on the success of the recovery process.
What You Can Do to Improve Your Hip Replacement Recovery
The doctors and specialists at OrthoUnited use the best methods and equipment available to promote successful hip replacement recovery. However, there are steps that you, as a patient, can take to ensure a smoother, swifter, and successful recovery:
- Get into physical therapy immediately. Movement is essential to healthy hip replacement recovery. That’s why specific joint-strengthening exercises under the guidance of a certified physical therapists are important for the positive outcome of any hip replacement surgery. Also, once you are able to perform light activity, incorporate healthy home exercises into your recovery program.
- Pay close attention to your diet. Excess weight puts additional stress on your new hip prosthesis and increases wear and the risk of complication. Eat responsibly to hasten your recovery and expand the lifespan of your prosthesis.
- Promote healthy blood flow. Prevent blood clots by focusing on motion exercises that utilize the full range of your leg motions. Walking with or without the help of a supportive device is encouraged. Also, regularly squeeze your thigh and calf to stimulate circulation.
- Make sure your home accommodates your recovery needs. Before surgery, make practical modifications that enable you to access what you need without excess movement. For example, stock up on canned goods and pre-prepared frozen meals. Make plans with family members or caretakers to ensure you have help with tasks such as cooking, bathing, and running errands.
If you are experiencing hip or other joint pain, the orthopedic physicians at OrthoUnited in North Canton, Ohio, can help diagnose your injury and provide treatment to reduce or eliminate your pain. OrthoUnited offers experienced providers and the latest in diagnostic techniques to ensure prompt care. Call (844) 469-2663 for an appointment today.