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 Post subject: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 9:49 am 
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Dying from Nooch Lung
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I was born with my hips all wrong, and they tried to fix it when I was a kid (I did the splits in plaster) but that didn't fully work, so since I reached adulthood I've started experiencing worsening pain, limping and gradually losing range of motion. I've always known I would need a hip replacement and even booked in for one 3 years ago but decided to put it off. Since then I've lost 3cm in height on my bad leg, so it's beyond time I get this fixed.

I'm booked in for a total hip replacement next week. When I was in for my pre-op appointment the first doctor I saw started off by saying "well, this is BIG, BLOODY SURGERY.... but it is the most successful operation we perform". I thought that was a refreshing approach, and I know most people are very happy with the outcome of these ops but that doesn't stop me being pretty nervous, not only about the operation but also about the hospital stay as a vegan and the recovery period (where I'm not allowed to bend down or twist or do anything at all that might causes the joint to dislocate. I'm also going to have to wear very restrictive socks for SIX forking WEEKS to help prevent deep vein thrombosis!).

I know Jogirl has talked about having a hip replacement on this forum before. Anyone else had a joint replaced?

Is there anything I can do to help the healing process, nutrition wise? I'm not allowed to get the scar wet or basically touch it for 2 weeks because it's going to be pretty big and stapled shut with metal staples(!), but if people can recommend ointment for after that I'd be interested.

And if you want to send me your good vibes, healing thoughts etc. that would be much appreciated as well!

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 10:00 am 
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I've never had to have surgery, thankfully, so I don't have any advice, I'm afraid, but definitely sending good-healing-vibe-thoughts your way.

Obviously it's different in every hospital, and I've heard some horror stories, but my local hospital is seemingly pretty good on the vegan options. It's usually a curry or similar, so presumably meant to appeal to people who forgo certain animal products for religious reasons. So, if you happen to have a sizable Sikh/Hindu population nearby, then you've probably a good chance of getting vegan meals.

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 10:02 am 
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i don`t have much to offer you except for good wishes, and to say that I know several people who have had their hips replaced and it has been a game changer for them. Good on you for scheduling it.
(also, a friend of mine had to have vein surgery recently after a plane-travel-blood-clot incident, and she has become the queen of compression stockings. she even got me wearing them when i travel, and i confess i kind of like them.)

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 10:20 am 
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Hey, DS - thinking of you. My mum has has 3 hip replacements (I know, right?) as she has one of the dodgy old fashioned ones with chromium in it. She swears it's from hurdle racing for Middlesex in her youth! The surgery is pretty crappy, as is all surgery, but they get you up and on your feet really, really quickly and moving around. She used wheat germ oil on the scars one it was starting to heal, to good effect. She used a chair in the shower for quite a long time (and was really nervous about tripping on bath mats and rugs and things), but didn't need a walking stick for very long. She is back playing golf and swimming regularly, takes the dogs on long walks, and isn't worried about walking over uneven ground or on sand and things any more, which used to be impossible for her.

For hospitals - you can ask for the allergy menu, and they often have some ok but not stellar options so long as they know before they admit you that you're vegan. Alternatively, you can get your visitors to bring food in too. (Last time my other half was in hospital, I took in a Pizza Express or Wagamama take away some nights, or a jacket spud and beans from the local sandwich shop that I heated up in the microwave in the ward kitchen, then left him with nakd bars and Alpro puddings for his breakfasts.)

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 10:32 am 
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Good luck dropscone! I have no personal experience with hip surgery but have a number of relatives who have had very successful hip replacements & the equivalent surgery for knees. It does seem like one with a very high success rate and I hope it'll lead to a significant improvement in comfort for you!

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 10:47 am 
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Dying from Nooch Lung
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Thanks for the good luck wishes, everyone.

Ruby Rose wrote:
... She used wheat germ oil on the scars one it was starting to heal, to good effect. She used a chair in the shower for quite a long time...

For hospitals - you can ask for the allergy menu, and they often have some ok but not stellar options so long as they know before they admit you that you're vegan. Alternatively, you can get your visitors to bring food in too. (Last time my other half was in hospital, I took in a Pizza Express or Wagamama take away some nights, or a jacket spud and beans from the local sandwich shop that I heated up in the microwave in the ward kitchen, then left him with nakd bars and Alpro puddings for his breakfasts.)


Wheatgerm oil, eh? Haven't heard of that one, I'll have a look in the healthfood shop tomorrow. The OT won't let me use the shower because the step up is too high so I'm going to have to wash with a flannel for 6 weeks :S (I think she was being very over cautious, but I don't want to push my luck).

I'm hoping for a decent choice of food because we have a very large and diverse amount of faiths represented in my city, but the catering website didn't specify vegan (they do vegetarian, halal, hindu, I think kosher too. Also soft foods. Hopefully I can cobble something together from those!). I have sent them an email asking if they do anything specifically vegan and I am amassing a stock of snack bars, including the new Alpen jaffa cake ones, so I won't starve, it's just one of those situations where I expect one doesn't want to be explaining dietary needs at length to someone who may or may not want to help.

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 11:19 am 
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Oh man, so many hugs for you, dropscone! Hugs hugs hugs

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 11:44 am 
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Yeah. Hugs and hugs and hugs.

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 12:04 pm 
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Hi Dropscone! I've never had surgery but I just wanted to send you my best wishes, and hope you get some decent food in the hospital.

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 12:28 pm 
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Oh no! I've had fractures repaired with screws and a joint fused with orthopedic surgery, but nothing replaced. You'll want a lot of books, movies etc. I got a ton of knitting done (I was couch/bed ridden for 6 weeks after my fracture repair).

As for hospital food I'd scope out what places are near the hospital as a back up and get some friends lined up for delivery.

Thinking quick healing thoughts for you!


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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 12:31 pm 
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I wish you all the best! My grandparents-in-law recently had a few stays in some of the hospitals here and I sneaked a look at their menus and there were some alright looking vegan options (well, labelled vegetarian, egg, and dairy free) although they all were on the spicy side, though I hear that's a good thing after surgery...

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 1:06 pm 
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Good luck Dropscone! I think I've said before on here that my hip replacement (four years ago now) gave me my life back. Feel free to PM me if you have any questions (not that I'm an expert or anything!).

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 1:27 pm 
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Oh man. That sounds intense. I have no advice or experience to share but all the good wishes! I wish I lived nearby so I could bring you lots of tasty vegan food.

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 2:20 pm 
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Congrats and good luck. Good for you for scheduling something difficult!

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 6:09 pm 
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Good luck on your surgery. I think everyone here who feels qualified has given you great advice. I'm not qualified (never had any type of surgery), but I remember reading a great firsthand account of knee replacement surgery in the New York Times years ago. Even though they're from 2005 (!), I think they are still relevant, so I'm passing some links on to you. I hope they are accessible for you!

Good luck and all the good vibes to you! ~~~~~~~~~~~vibes~~~~~~~~~~~

LINK: http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/08/health/08brod.html
A New Set of Knees Comes at a Price: A Whole Lot of Pain

LINK: http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/15/healt ... learn.html
When It Comes to Severe Pain, Doctors Still Have Much to Learn

LINK: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/03/health/03brod.html
3 Years Later, Knees Made for Dancing (2008 update)


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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 6:14 pm 
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I have no direct experience, but two friends who've both had to have hip replacements (both in the ballet/gymnastic field) and both had good surgeries and great recoveries. both had gotten to pretty bad points, one walking with a cane and in constant pain. both are extremely happy, and one is back to work just 8 weeks later. if i didn't know she'd had the surgery, i could never have guessed!

so two happy stories to send some positive vibes. i'll send some of my own healing thoughts, too!

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 7:28 pm 
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Sending oh so many good vibes your way, dropscone! I've had surgery but nothing that major. (More a few semi-major procedures in a short period of time.) My best advice is to really allow yourself the recovery time you need, and don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it!

I wasn't vegan at the time, so I don't have experience with that, but do you have anyone there who can bring you some meals if the hospital can't provide vegan food?

Bleaming good thoughts in your directions!!!

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2015 8:42 pm 
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I haven't had surgery, but have seen about a dozen folks go through hip surgery in the past couple of years (all much, much older than you), and all of them had amazing recoveries and many went from debilitating pain and hobbling walks to being extremely active (even running!). Good for you for scheduling it and I hope everything goes smoothly!


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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2015 2:24 pm 
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My mom had her hip replaced and I was with her to help her through the day-to-day when she couldn't bend and so forth. She wore the compression stockings as well and was unable to get them on or off by herself due to the bending so you will want to have someone lined up to assist you with this.

Also, a long shoehorn to help you get shoes on, a grabber thing to help put things in dryer and pick up things that fall.

Many good vibes to you!

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2015 4:56 pm 
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Thinking good thoughts for your surgery and recovery, dropscone!


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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2015 5:56 pm 
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Thanks everyone. I'm just doing laundry and making freezer meals and generally trying to prepare my house over the next couple of days.

My partner will bring me food if I need it in hospital, and he'll stay over at my house for a while after I get back from hospital to make sure I'm coping okay. I've already warned him he's going to have to change my compression stockings. Poor guy! I had to take my mum's off after a week when she broke her arm and they were kind of gross, and my legs are prone to flakiness/itchiness anyway so I'm not looking forward to any of that!

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2015 9:19 pm 
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good luck! for healing you will have greater protein need.s I was recently in the hospital for about 4 days and the food situation was really really bad. if you can have someone bring you food it will probably be for the best.


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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2015 11:53 pm 
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I don't have personal experience to share, but I'll be thinking about you and hoping all goes well <3

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:02 am 
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Superdrug has an own-brand version of bio-oil which is labelled vegan and might be useful for your scar?

Image

I've only ever had one stay in hospital and my partner at the time very kindly brought me lots of food, which they were happy for him to do. Maybe your friends can schedule some deliveries?

Good luck!

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 Post subject: Re: Major surgery - whoop-de-doo!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 11:03 am 
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I have to wash with antimicrobial body wash and stick ointment up my nose as a precaution against MRSA prior to surgery. I mis-read the instructions so I missed the first application of nose stuff, which should have been at 8am this morning, so I was reading up on MRSA to see if that was likely to make a difference, and found something that says if you want to effectively decolonise someone who carries it (my hospital seems to supply the wash & ointment to all incoming patients as a precaution, regardless of whether they are carriers) you need to start 5-10 days in advance, and give them something to treat the stuff that might be lurking in the throat too. So, I guess I will carry on but not worry about it too much.

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