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Orthopaedic Surgery & Sports Medicine of San Antonio

Patient Instruction

Call your doctor if you experience any of the following symptoms:
  • Redness, burning, swelling, or drainage from your operated area
  • Fever of 100 degrees or higher
  • Pain that does not lessen with rest
  • Acute, severe pain in the hip associated with twisting, turning or injury

Consult your doctor regarding considerations before surgery, rehabilitation after surgery, and expectations for surgery. It is important to begin planning for your return home from the hospital before your surgical procedure. Your surgeon may suggest tips to prepare your home for after surgery. For example, get an apron or belt with pockets to carry things while you are on crutches, buy or borrow a cordless phone, remove scatter rugs and other obstacles, safe transport using crutches, have high chair and commode accessories available. Above all, during this time, treat yourself well, eat balanced meals, get plenty of rest, and if requested by your surgeon, donate your own blood in advance so it can be transfused during and after surgery.

After surgery you will need to rest your hip to allow proper healing. Your activity will be restricted during this healing period. During the first weeks after surgery, you may be advised to put a pillow between your legs when turning over in bed, wear elastic stockings, use raised toilet seat, take showers rather than baths, restrict activities such as sudden twisting or turning, crossing legs, exposing the scar to sunlight, and driving. Carefully follow your doctor’s instructions regarding progression to normal weight bearing and resumption of normal physical activity. Individual results will vary and all patients will experience different activity levels post-surgery.

Even after the healing period, excessive loads placed on the implants through sudden trauma or high impact activities, such as running and jumping, can damage the artificial joint. While the expected life of an artificial hip replacement system is difficult to estimate, it is finite. The components are made of foreign materials that will not indefinitely withstand the activity level and loads of normal, healthy bone. The hip joint may have to be replaced at some time in the future.


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