Wednesday, September 22, 2010

September, 22, 2010

Today was my 1 year check up, since my last checkup. The x-ray looked good and everything was ok. I am to return in another year. One change in protocol is that I must take antibiotics before dental work for the rest of my life, instead of just the first 2 years.
Check this site for hip hardware recalls: Drug Watch. This recall does not apply to me, I had a total hip replacement, not 'resurfacing'.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Tuesday March 22, 2010

Tried to do my annual spring walk to the state capitol, but forgot to bring cash and only walked 6 miles.
Tried again on 3/31 and successfully completed the walk, about 14 miles. I take the bus back.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Today was the first time I have skied since my hip replacement.

I skied at Buck Hill, taking advantage of the Early Bird Special, which is up to $12 now. I skied from the highest point down the black diamond run on my first run. My style was back on the second run. Only fell once, on the opposite side.

Skied 5 more days without falling, until the arrival of the March rains.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Saturday, November 21, 2009

It has been 6 months. I'm fairly back to normal. Most of the time my hip feels pretty good, and much better than before. Sometimes, my quadriceps muscle is sore. I go to the health club 3 days a week, but I only spend 13 minutes on the elliptical, and do 10 reps on 4 or 5 weight machines.

Today, I cut down another tree for Laura. I have raked leaves and mowed the lawn. I will probably shovel snow and ski soon.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

Today I did my annual hike to the State Capitol. It is nearly 14 miles. I rode the bus home. It was probably the last nice walking day of the year.

Unwisely, I wore a new pair of walking shoes. Not even wool socks kept me from getting a blister. My hip performed well.

There are pictures at my Lake Street page.

This means a Grand Canyon hike in the spring is within the realm of possibility.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sunday, September 27th, 2009

This weekend we went to Boston for lobster and tourist stuff.

This was my first trip through a magnetometer since the surgery. I made new friends at TSA in Minneapolis and Boston. The carbon-steel ball in my hip joint sets off every alarm, so I got the full wanding and pat-down. I brought a copy of my x-ray. They were thorough and courteous.

I climbed all 294 steps of the Bunker Hill Monument, and walked the whole Freedom Trail, plus half the Black Heritage Trail to the Charles River.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Friday, August 21, 2009

I'm taking 2 coated aspirin a day, and feeling pretty good lately. I'm going to the health club 3 days a week. Did 14 minutes on the elliptical and 4 machines today. Standing more seems to help.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Surgeon 3 month check up.
For the last week, I've been using the crutch in the morning. I can't put weight on my left leg. The doctor said my x-ray looked good, so the pain could be due to infection, back problems, or it may just go away. He ordered a blood test, which came back negative.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Thursday 6/11/09

Surgeon 1-month check-up:
I've been off percocet for 10 days. I can usually get by with 1 Aleve, 1 coated aspirin, and a glass or 2 of red wine a day. "The pain will continue to improve."

I am going to the health club 3 times a week. I can use the treadmill for the first time in over a year. For short walks, I no longer need the crutch. I bring it along for longer walks, or if I will need to stand for a while.

The new x-ray looks good. My new parts remain aligned correctly, and positioned where they are supposed to be. My new parts add about a pound net to my weight, so I have to allow for that when I check my weight. New weight targets are 152-155 summer, and 156-158 winter.

In about 15-20 years, I will need to get the plastic bearing surface in the socket replaced.

Airport joint cards are no longer issued.

My next check-up is in 2 months.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Saturday 6/6/09

Following is a cost summary, so far:
$ 495 Pre-op physical
3,231 Surgeon
16,066 Hospital, 1 night. I think this includes the hardware.
630 Nurse Anesthetists
785 Anesthesiologist ?
$21,207 Total, so far.
I did not go to a nursing home, and I did my own rehab.
There will be continuing check up visits with the surgeon.
My deductible is around $2000.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Sunday 5/24/09

I feel like I back-slid a little. After a rough night, I've again started taking 1/2 Percocet twice a day. Two Aleve per day just wasn't cutting it.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Thursday 5/21/09

I am totally off narcotics now. It appears 2 Aleve a day are almost adequate.

At the health club, I got nausea from the pain of the rehab exercises. I used the elliptical for 5 minutes at 2.4 mph, with a little difficulty. I did 3 minutes on the treadmill, for the first time in over a year. Last was 5 reps on the chin assist, with not much assist. After a short talk with a friend, I returned home for second breakfast and the ice pack.

Went out at lunch. I brought the crutch along, but did not use it. I got by the rest of the day without it.

Does anyone know how to get surgical soap off? This new stuff is like spar varnish. It only seems to come off as my skin sloughs off.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Staple removal day 5/20/09

Did 10 reps of the hip exercise. After a shave and first breakfast, I will use the mirror at the health club for the rehab exercises.

The staples came out at 1 PM. Now I can also sleep on my left side, and I can shower without taping on Saranwrap.

Going to try Aleve instead of the Perc tonight.

After today, I will only post milestones.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Tuesday 5/19/09

Did 10 reps of hip exercises. Shaved and ate breakfast. Went to Lenox Breakfast to hear an astronomer.

Got the spare lawn mower blade sharpened before lunch. Took half a perc when I got home for the day.

I'm sore today. Did a few reps of the rehab exercises.

At bed time, I did 10 more reps of the hip exercises and took half a perc. During the night, I laid on my stomach for a while, for the first time since the surgery.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Monday 5/18/09

I slept well. Did 10 reps of the hip exercises. Took one coated aspirin.

At the health club, I did the rehab exercises in front of the mirror. The meds I have taken have not given me nausea, however the pain from some of these exercises gives me some nausea. I did 2 upper body weight machines and left.

Stopped at McDonald's for breakfast on the way home. They raised their prices Friday, and my prepaid card is down to 44 cents now, so Adios, McDonald's. I took half a perc when I got home.

The surgeon's nurse called to check up on me.

I read and wrote for a while. It has been a nice sunny recovery day. I checked the lawn mower blade, and picked up some roofing nails from around the garage.

I did 10 more reps of the hip exercises, and took half a perc at bed time.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sunday 5/17/09

Did 10 reps of hip exercises. Got up at 7 AM, for first breakfast of 2 frozen home-made blueberry pancakes.

After a shave and shower, I changed the dressing. Looks ok.

I crutched to the gas station for a St. Paul paper. Ann walked with me today. On return, I had a frozen blueberry waffle with peanut butter, a Percocet, and coffee. There are good smells coming from the kitchen: cookies made from chocolate cake mix with dried cherries. They are part of my recovery plan.

Later, I had 1/2 Percocet and did some of the rehab exercises, and 10 reps of the hip exercises.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Saturday 5/16/09

Got up at 7 AM and shaved after my morning exercises. Took 1 aspirin and 1 Percocet with breakfast. I will admit that a nice, strong cup of coffee adds a mighty fine finish to the perc.

Ann is home today, so I will probably not be going on any treks today.

I am doing my own physical therapy. Today I started a new set of home rehab exercises.

Ann went shopping with her sister. After an unhealthy lunch, I crutched around the block and talked with the neighbors. Had a second perc and coffee. Reloaded the ice bag.

After a healthy supper, I had a glass of wine and a coated aspirin, with a piece of dark chocolate.

I continue to use the ice pack at night and during the day. I was in bed doing the hip exercises before 10.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Friday 5/15/09

Got up at 2 AM to read for an hour.

Had 1st Percocet at 5 AM. Ann refilled my ice bag.

7:30 AM: Did 10 reps of the proscribed exercises, shaved, and started breakfast.

9:30 AM: Took a Tylenol-ES before my walk to Lenox Community Center. Took a soda cracker along for the nausea.

10:45 AM: The walk went very well. Talked with a few friends. Took a 2nd perc with a coffee, when I returned home. Reloaded the ice pack. Lunch is soon!

After lunch, I washed a load of towels. I won't try to carry them up the steps today. I did some yard work and then showered. I changed the dressing on my incision. Everything looks ok.

Had one red wine at the restaurant, and an aspirin at 8 PM. Went to bed at 10. Got up at 10:33 PM to watch Leno, and then almost made it through my exercises before I fell asleep.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Thursday 5/14/09

Slept well on my back and right side, with my new companion, the pillow between my legs.

5 AM I took 1 Percocet with first breakfast. Ann loaded up the ice pack and I went back to bed and read for a while.

7:30 Did 10 reps of the hip exercises.

I tried the orange peel soap on the remains of the surgical soap before I showered. Didn't touch it. After the shower, I removed and replaced the bandages. I put a regular band aid with antibiotic on the drain hole. The hospital sent me home with bandages and tape for the incision, which is only 3-1/4 inches long.

I crutched 2 blocks to McDonald's for 2nd breakfast, and returned.

9 AM: It is time to read and rest for a while with the ice bag, coffee, 2nd perc, aspirin, and colace.

After lunch at 1 PM, I had another perc.

After supper, I had two glasses of red wine, followed by an aspirin and toast and antihistamine. The aspirin and red wine are to reduce the risk of leg clots.

Did 10 more reps of the hip exercises. Now it is time for the news and Leno.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Discharge Day 5/13/09

Woke at 5:30 AM.

At 6 AM, the nurse removed my catheter and IV. Yeah! I have one tube left, the drainage tube, which had not done much draining since last evening.

Breakfast was at 8 AM. I had a piece of french toast without syrup, a small slice of sausage, oatmeal :--(, orange juice, milk, coffee. I put a little of the maple syrup on the oatmeal and choked it down. Eating all the food is part of getting out!

Later, my drain was removed, and I asked if I could walk. They made me use the walker, but I could walk fairly fast, and walked down all 4 halls of the cross.

At 11:30 AM, I was picked up for physical therapy. We reviewed my hip exercises to assure I was doing them correctly. We reviewed other important topics. I was taught the correct way to walk with a crutch. I went back to my room with a crutch.

Back in my room, it was time for more solid food. I had a veggie burger, fruit, raspberry custard, milk, and coffee.

At 1 PM, Occupational Therapy came to my room and did their training. We talked about things that used to be simpler, like getting dressed, picking up things from the floor, and sitting on the stool. They asked about safety features at home. They seemed impressed with what I had already figured out at home.

My surgeon came by and approved my discharge. He answered all my questions and wrote a prescription for pain pills. I received no blood or plasma during surgery. My hardware is a titanium alloy pin, with a steel alloy ball and a cross-linked plastic socket. I'll never make it through another airport magnetometer. Because I had not waited too long, and I am skinny and healthy, the surgery went quickly. There was no cartilage left. I declined a handicap parking pass.

I walked the halls again, by myself, with a crutch.

At 3 PM, I had my last PT. I had asked earlier for information about rehab PT that I could do at home on my own, and that is what this session was about.

The nurse removed the IV shunt from my wrist. I called Ann to pick me up after work.

Thanks to everyone at Methodist Hospital who helped me. Everyone was kind and went the extra step.

It is important to note that the usual stay for this surgery is 2 or 3 nights. I communicated clearly that I wanted to stay 1 night only. I was motivated and prepared and physically able to make that happen. Many of the nursing staff said they had never seen a hip replacement patient get out after 1 night.

I was required to leave in a wheel chair. After stopping at the hospital pharmacy for pain pills, we came home. I visited 2 neighbors, before supper. I did not have any heavy pain killer tonight, so I had 2 glasses of red wine. I will have an aspirin with toast later, and do my hip exercises at bed time, after Leno. I took 2 acetaminophen, extra strength.

I will post before and after x-rays, when I can figure out how to apply a water mark.