Basic precautions after hip arthroplasty
Movements that should be avoided for 6-10 weeks after the operation. These precautions apply in any situation, including when you are sitting, and while getting up and out of bed or sitting and getting up from chairs.
Getting on and off the bed on the opposite side to the operated.
- Don't cross your legs.
- Don't flex excessively the operated hip (> 90º).
- Don't rotate the operated leg in or out.
- Don't lie on your side without a pillow between the legs.
1. Sit up in bed, bring your legs up to the edge (if necessary, place your healthy foot underneath the operated one and help yourself with it) and lift them out of bed, spinning your buttocks and body while doing so. Keep the knee of your operated leg without flexing with the help of the foot on the healthy side.
2. Then sit on the edge of the bed by first placing the foot of your non-operated leg on the floor.
3. Place your hands on the bed on both sides, keeping the operated leg half stretched, and stand up with the help of another person or your crutches or walker, while supporting the operated foot completely flat on the floor. As a rule, we recommend that patients "feel" the same load on the foot as they do when sitting with the soles of the feet on the floor.
4. Once standing, take your time to make sure you don't get dizzy, and collect the sensations from your foot, knee, and hip. You will see that there is no pain, although it is normal that you have discomfort and insecurity. Avoid abrupt gestures.
To return to bed, perform the reverse procedure. Remember to avoid abrupt gestures or drop into bed.Walk
1. Firstly the crutches or the walker are moved forward.
2. Then the operated leg, so that the foot reaches just behind the line of the crutches.
3. And finally, the non-operated leg is brought forward.
You can turn to either side but you must not rotate with the foot fixed. To do this, take short steps and turn slowly.
It is important that you take several short walks throughout the day, avoiding fatigue or overloading the operated leg, as this could cause inflammation and pain in the following days.Stairs
1. To climb stairs, you must first place the non-operated leg on the next step, and then climb the operated leg, along with the crutches.
2. To go downstairs, you must place the walker or crutches first, then the operated leg, and finally the non-operated leg. This seems complicated at first, but with patience and practice, you will quickly gain confidence.Get in and out of the car (to the passenger seat)
The passenger seat should be pulled back as far as possible. The back of the seat should be slightly reclined.
1. Make sure you are level with the car (watch out for curbs on the sidewalks), and stand with your back to the seat, with the door fully open.
2. Get in the car on your side, with the back of your legs pressed against it.
3. Lean on the back of the seat with your right hand and the base of the seat with your left hand. Do not hold on to the door: it could close or move, causing damage.
4. As you sit down, allow the operated leg to stretch out in front of you. It will be easier if you lean back a little.
5. Using the non-operated leg and hands, bring your body back to the driver's seat, keeping the operated leg stretched out in front of you.
6. Leaning back and turning on your buttocks, slide your legs into the car. Be careful and don't rush. There are many patients who need help the first few times, to insert the operated leg into the car without making sudden gestures or suffering pain.
7. Get into a comfortable position.
To get out of the car, perform the reverse procedure.
Typically, you will be allowed to drive 8 to 12 weeks after the operation, when you are walking properly and you do not need the 2 crutches to move.