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Recovering From Hip Surgery: What You Need to Know

Hip replacement is a major surgery, but it can be a great option for people suffering from chronic hip pain related to injury or arthritis. If you’re considering hip surgery, you might be wondering what recovery is like.

At Manhattan Orthopedics, our hip specialist, Dr. Craig Dushey, performs hip replacement surgery and rehabilitation. When your surgery is scheduled, our team gives you instructions on how to prepare. The surgery itself can take several hours, but what happens after your hip surgery is over?

Immediately after hip surgery

As soon as your hip replacement is complete, you’re moved into a recovery room. We monitor your vitals as you wake up from the anesthesia and administer pain medication as needed.

Once you’re fully awake, we move you to your hospital room. Expect to spend 1-3 days in the hospital after hip replacement surgery.

Your nurses may encourage you to sit up and begin walking with a walker shortly after surgery. Moving as soon as possible after hip surgery helps speed recovery by increasing blood flow and building strength.

Depending on your condition, you might start physical therapy while you’re still in the hospital. Rehabilitation starts with focused range-of-motion exercises, and your pain levels are closely monitored as you begin the recovery process. 

Recovering from hip surgery at home

It’s important to prepare your home for your recovery before you have hip surgery. Set up a comfortable chair on the first floor of your home and stock the area with everything you might need, such as books, magazines, and your laptop.

Evaluate your home for tripping hazards, like loose rugs. Strive to keep clear pathways throughout your home so it’s easier to navigate with a walker or crutches. 

Maintaining a normal daily routine may be challenging in the first few days after you return from the hospital. Don’t be afraid to ask family members for help preparing meals, using the restroom, and bathing. 

If you live alone, ask a friend or family member to stay with you following surgery. If no one is available to stay with you, ask our team about the option of staying in a rehabilitation facility until you recover more fully.

Participating in physical therapy

Physical therapy is a critical part of recovery, whether you’re in the hospital or at home. Your exercises include a combination of range-of-motion and strengthening movements. Our team may give you a list of daily exercises to do at home, or we may recommend that a physical therapist comes to your home several times a week for the first few weeks.

Along with physical therapy, it’s important to incorporate walking into your daily routine. Even short walks throughout the day can make a big difference in recovery from hip replacement.

Most people experience a dramatic improvement in pain and mobility within the first three months of hip replacement surgery. Ask your physical therapist when you can return to your normal daily activities. As you continue to heal, you’ll find that these daily activities get easier.

Continue doing your physical therapy exercises and attending your follow-up appointments as long as necessary to ensure you achieve a full recovery.

Hip surgery could be the answer to your chronic hip pain or arthritis. We have offices in Astoria, Brooklyn, and Midtown West Manhattan in New York City. To learn more, call the office nearest you or use the online tool to request an appointment with Dr. Dushey.

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