What to expect after your operation
A single scar over your hip 10-20cms in length.
In most cases stitches will be soluble and nothing needs to be removed. Your wound will be covered with a dressing for 10-12 days. This is splash proof and will tolerate a light shower. If there is leakage from the wound inform a nurse.
You will experience some surgical pain and discomfort requiring pain relief in the first few weeks. Everything will be done to keep the pain to a minimum. It is important to take regular painkillers initially as it easier to stop pain rather than treat it.
It is common to become constipated after your operation due to the procedure and pain killers. Please inform the staff at admission if you are prone to constipation. Laxatives will be offered as required. Eating plenty of fibre, fruit and vegetables will help.
Swelling of the leg is variable post operation and there may be some bruising. Avoid sitting for prolonged periods. Take frequent walks and sit in reclined position. Swelling will settle gradually over first few months.
Your body is using energy to heal. You may feel more tired than normal in the first few weeks.
Your operation day. You will see the Anaesthetist before your operation.
If surgery is in the morning, get up with the physiotherapist in the afternoon.
Blood test. Get up with the physiotherapist. Being out of bed as soon as possible lessens the risk of forming blood clots, developing chest infections and reduces stiffness and pain.
Check X-Ray of new hip. Walk with frame moving onto crutches then sticks when safe. You may be able to be discharged home in this period. Build up walking distances. Home when safe and confident.
Return to driving a light vehicle – if you are comfortable and can perform emergency stop. (You should inform your insurance company of operation – some have a set time for return to driving after hip replacement)
At about a month or less things start to come together and you will feel many of the benefits of the surgery,
your pain will have gone and you will feel like a new person.
You may be able to return to work if you have a desk-job.
Able to do short European flights.
Return to moderate manual work and gentle sport.
Long haul are allowed.
After discharge -
What can I do to help myself after the operation
Start moving your toes and feet after your operation
Take regular short walks (early and regular movement helps protect against clots)
Don’t smoke while the wound is healing.
Elevate your feet if they are swelling.
If you are overweight losing weight will help reduce your risk of dislocation and help prolong the life of your hip replacement.
Build activity up gradually.
Revision Hip Replacement
Whilst modern hip replacements can be expected to last for 20-30 years, some will eventually fail due to wear and loosening. This is most likely to occur in those who had their replacement at an early age and have an active lifestyle.Complication rates vary on your state of health, weight, age, smoking status, compliance with post-operative guidance. We will discuss any specific concerns we have with you. Serious complications of a hip replacement are uncommon, occurring in less than two per 100 operations. These are described below: Blood clots There is a small risk of developing a blood clot in the first few weeks after surgery. There are two main places a blood clot can develop: • inside one of your legs – which is known as a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) • inside your lungs – which is known as a pulmonary embolism(PE) Symptoms of a DVT are: • pain, swelling and tenderness in one of your legs (usually your calf) • a heavy ache in the affected area • warm skin in the area of the clot Symptoms of a pulmonary embolism include: • breathlessness, which may come on suddenly or gradually • chest pain, which may be worse when you breathe in • coughing If you suspect that you have either of these types of blood clots you should seek immediate medical advice from your GP or the doctor in charge of your care In order to reduce your risk of blood clots you may be given foot pumps or stockings to wear in hospital and blood thinning medication to take after discharge. You risk can also be reduced by making sure you drink enough fluids and moving around as soon as possible after your operation. Infection Everything possible is done to reduce the risk of infection. You will be given antibiotics at the time of surgery and the wound will be washed out with antiseptic solution. The surgery will take place in an ultra-clean air ventilation operating theatre. Despite this there is always a small risk (<1%) that some bacteria could work their way into the tissue in and around the artificial hip joint, triggering an infection. Treatment may be antibiotics, a wound washout or in rare cases, revision surgery. It is important we make the right decision for you. Symptoms of an infection include: • a discharge of fluid or blood from the surgical wound • a high temperature (fever) of or above 38°c (100.4F) • shaking and chills • redness and swelling at the site of the surgery • worsening hip pain, that can persist even when resting
What our Patients say
My initial consultation with Mr Alun John was in February. He heard me out as to how my deteriorating hip was causing increasing pain and affecting my mobility and well-being. The hip, according to him was severely arthritic and we agreed upon a date for a hip replacement in April. He fully explained what the operation entailed. The original date had to be cancelled due to the Covid pandemic. Mr John took the trouble to get in touch with me personally and relay the bad news, promising he would get in touch as soon as the situation improved. True to his word, he contacted me mid July and offered a new date. The operation was successfully performed in early August. I am now pain free and increasingly mobile. During my stay in hospital and the subsequent follow-up appointment I was impressed by his calm and professional approach. Under his initial gruff exterior there is a kindness and a genuine care for the patient.
Mr John was recommended to me by another consultant due to his expertise in complex hip replacement operations. I have found Mr John to be both knowledgeable and professional throughout both my complicated total hip replacement procedures. He has put myself and my family at ease throughout and has been extremely helpful and efficient in dealing with any enquiry or problem. I would highly recommend him to others and have already done so.