Orthopaedics

Pain After Hip Replacement Surgery

A total hip replacement surgery is only used as a last resort when the pain caused by the arthritic condition becomes unbearable. But as a matter of fact, pain after hip replacement surgery is also something that almost all the people have to endure. Though this surgery is a very complicated one, not many complications usually arise, but pain post the surgery is inevitable.

Pain After Hip Replacement Surgery

As a matter of fact, people who are considering a hip replacement are actually briefed about their situation and the problems that they could face after the surgery and the necessary precautions that should be taken to manage them.

  • People are actually worried about the positions that they should avoid, the positions that they should sleep in, how effective the medications will be, the impact on their daily activities etc.
  • One thing that people can take heart out of after a replacement surgery of the hip is that the associated post-operative pain is not for a long period of time as in a knee replacement. Though this is the case, it still takes some time to get back to one’s normal daily routine.
  • Another thing to note is that before the surgery, the arthritis that has inflamed the hip can also inflame the muscles in the vicinity of the hip causing them to tighten and stiffen. So, they would have got used to the changes (prior to the surgery) that your body has been taking to reduce the pain.
  • But after the surgery, the placement of a new artificial joint changes the entire situation making it tough for the stiffened muscles to loosen, ergo pain. There is also a possibility that these muscles might never adapt to the presence of the new joint.

Thigh Pain

One of the most affected regions with pain after a replacement surgery of the hip is the thigh. The pain is usually observed in the region where the tip of the ball-socket new joint exists. The pain worsens with movement but is literally absent during rest periods. It is only after moving regularly that the pain could diminish.

The reason for the pain could be loosening of the new joint or infections that can be caused during or after the surgery. Even if the new joint dislocates, the pain in the thigh can be excruciating.

Groin Pain

As mentioned above, when the hip gets affected by arthritis, the surrounding structures can also tighten up. So, after the new joint has been put in place, the stiffened structures (which here is the groin) will find it difficult to retain their normal flexibility ultimately causing immense pain. Thus, groin pain could also be observed in people after the replacement surgery.

Post-Surgery Recovery

At least for the first ten days after the surgery, a complete rest is quintessential. After this period of rest, one can observe a considerable change in their pain levels as joint pain is completely gone. The soft tissues would also be healing slowly. Four weeks after the surgery, walking with the help of an aid becomes easier and 6-8 weeks after the surgery, normal activity can be presumed.

  • Ice packs are usually suggested by doctors to alleviate the pain. Regular application of ice packs is usually recommended to alleviate the pain.
  • Once discharged from the hospital, doctors usually prescribe painkillers. If the painkillers do not seem to have an effect, then it is necessary to tell your doctor about it and seek the required changes in prescription.
  • Keeping the legs elevated when asleep would also help alleviate the pain considerably during nights.
  • Physical therapy under the direction of a specialist is usually necessary.

Pain after hip replacement surgery is an inevitable phenomenon that everybody has to deal with. Proper pain management would ensure that the results of the surgery last longer.

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