Anyone under 50yrs had a hip replacement - how did you decide when you were ready?

(21 Posts)
stressbucket1 Wed 11-Mar-20 14:06:54

Hi I am early 40's with bad arthritis in one hip. Surgeon has said he will put me on the list for surgery whenever I want it doing. I have had 1 hip injection that helped with pain for a couple of months but also made the joint feel weak. I cant take regular ibuprofen due to another condition so currently just manage with paracetamol when I need it. Sleep is slightly disturbed and it gets more painful as the day goes on. Anyones experiences would be welcome. Thanks

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stressbucket1 Wed 11-Mar-20 20:15:33


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ExcessivelyDiverted Thu 12-Mar-20 07:08:54

I'm 49 and had a total hip replacement last week. For me it was unexpected as I fractured the neck of my femur ( tripped over a kerb whilst walking the dog!)
I was in hospital a week and have been home since Tuesday evening. I'm on crutches and getting about ok at home including up and down stairs. They sent me home with mobility aids to help and the physiotherapists will be coming out either today or tomorrow. If the hip is giving you pain I would definitely recommend getting it done. You will need support when you come home particularly if you have younger children as bending to pick things up is not allowed and you'll be quite tired for a bit. My DD is 16 so she is doing a bit more round the house at the moment!

stressbucket1 Thu 12-Mar-20 10:37:34

Ah thanks so much for your experience. Sounds traumatic with the fracture and hope you are on the mend. Did they give you any time frame for getting more mobile/driving etc? And can you manage stairs/shower.
I do have youngish children that I would need to get to school etc. I suppose I am just wondering if I should wait as long as possible so they are a bit more independent or go for it now so I can keep up with them on days out etc.

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stressbucket1 Thu 12-Mar-20 10:39:55

Also happy for older than 50's experiences. There is a chance with earlier hip replacements that further surgery could be needed in the future so that is affecting my decision too at the moment. That's why I put the age on the post.

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thenightsky Thu 12-Mar-20 10:42:02

If you are in the Leicester area there's a surgeon who does the new superpath technique at Leicester General Hospital, which means no restrictions at all after the op. I had it done around bonfire night and was driving within 2 weeks. I went back to pilates at 3 weeks. He also does the op privately at the Nuffield.

stressbucket1 Thu 12-Mar-20 10:47:28

Thanks night sky. I am not in the area but will have a look at that technique. Is it still a full replacement op with general anaesthetic? That's really helpful to know the latest developments

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stressbucket1 Thu 12-Mar-20 10:54:12

Also thenightsky if you dont mind me asking. Has it greatly improved your pain and range of motion? And how badly affected where you before the op? How were you dealing with pain management beforehand? Thanks again

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ExcessivelyDiverted Thu 12-Mar-20 11:34:17

I managed stairs 5 days after op (with 2 crutches) - would probably have been able to a day or so sooner but there was a weekend and hospitals don't do too much on weekends. I could shower if I had a cubicle one but as it's over the bath I have to wait a bit until I can get the leg over the side - I have a little stool in the bathroom and am having strip washes. They said 6 weeks for driving and that is the most annoying bit. I've had to rearrange appointments and we'll have to use cabs and ubers for a while. I've stuck to the house so far as I've only been home just over a day but the physio is coming later so will check if I'm allowed out for little (tiny!) walks. I am on the mend though, thank you. It's one of those where you will be worse for a while but then much better. My surgeon said my hip should do 25+ years and if needs revising in future then it's a much easier operation to do as only part of it will need changing.

thenightsky Thu 12-Mar-20 11:41:01

Is it still a full replacement op with general anaesthetic

Yes... total hip replacement, but they don't cut any muscles or tendons. They just move them out of the way, which means you heal much, much faster. A traditional hip replacement has a 1/100 chance of dislocation, hence all the restrictions afterwards. A superpath hip has a 1/10,000 chance of dislocation, which is the same as anyone else with normal hips.

Has it greatly improved your pain and range of motion

My hip is as good now as when I was in my 20s. I get a full night's sleep now too. The range of movement is as good as someone with 'normal' hips. I even did the park run last week. I don't even remember I have a replacement anymore.

Prior to the op I couldn't put my shoes and socks on or cut my toe nails on that side. I woke up every time I moved slightly in my sleep. The pain made me cry out so I was keeping DH awake too. I was on opiates at night and Naproxen (500mg) twice a day. Neither really touched the pain.

Borntobeamum Thu 12-Mar-20 13:23:30

I was only 29 and crippled with pain. I had 3 little children and my quality of life was getting too bad.
I’ve never looked back and I’m 57 now! X

stressbucket1 Thu 12-Mar-20 13:55:38

Excessively that's good news about how long it will last before any further surgery is needed. We are due a bathroom refit and was thinking of a walk in shower too. That would be handy in that case
At the moment I can still put shoes on. It's a bit of a struggle and gets worse as the day goes on. Mostly its pain on walking/bending down and struggling to get comfortable at night.
I am not on regular pain relief though although I do experience pain throughout the day and lots of people use that as a benchmark for needing surgery.
I just dont want to struggle on for 5 years, have the op and wish I would have done it sooner. Did any of you feel like that? I dont want to waste 5 years of my kids being little ducking out of activities because they cause me pain. My activity levels are decreasing because I cant find exercise to do that doesn't cause more pain.

Borntobeamum that's great news and I am so glad you are still doing well after so long. It's that kind of story that makes me want to go for it.

Thenightsky I have an appt with the surgeon at the end of the month so will ask him if that op is available. If not I would be tempted to wait until it is. He is a specialist in young hip replacements though so hopefully it would be.

Thanks again for all your experiences I feel like I know what I am letting myself in for now. I have had 2 c-sections so have some idea what post op recovery can be like.

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MooseBeTimeForSummer Thu 12-Mar-20 14:15:58

@thenightsky. Interesting. I was told that they weren’t good enough reasons to have a hip replacement at a triage appointment I attended earlier this year. I’m 46 with moderate arthritis and FAI.

My other reasons - not wanting to be on pain medication long term (2 naproxen daily plus tramadol on bad days), unable to walk long distances, cycle, participate in activities with my 8 year old were dismissed as not valid enough either. It was also suggested that if I had one now, I’d need another in 20 years or so. I fully appreciate that, thanks. It’s almost as if they expect me to tolerate this for another 20 years and then they’ll do it.

They begrudgingly made me an appointment to see a consultant on March 30th. We shall see how that goes. He specialises in “youth” surgery and uses the anterior approach.

thenightsky Thu 12-Mar-20 14:51:23

stressbucket1 Apparently Superpath is being trialled in the Hereford area now too. There may be other places that offer something called minimally invasive replacement, but it won't be Superpath.

There is a facebook group (closed) that you can join. My Surgeon started it, but it is now run by patients. The surgeon is active on there and answers lots of our questions. Search for

thenightsky Thu 12-Mar-20 14:55:29

superpath explained here

IndieTara Thu 12-Mar-20 15:01:03

I had a hip replaced aged 51 when DD was 8 due to OA. The consultant I saw said I should have had it replaced 10 yrs earlier despite my GP and lots of hospital staff telling me I was too young!
I'm still waiting on my other hip as apparently it's not bad enough yet.
My advice would be to have it done sooner and not be in pain for a decade as I was.

maslinpan Thu 12-Mar-20 15:01:29

My DH had both hips done at 35 due to arthritis. It was life changing and he has so much more energy and mobility, the hips are metal on metal and are holding up really well 15 years on. The technology has moved on in that time and will continue to.
I would have the operation as soon as it was offered to me, if I were you.

stressbucket1 Thu 12-Mar-20 19:53:11

Thanks everyone I will speak to the surgeon at the end of the month. You have all convinced me not to wait too long. Moose hope your appt goes well and the surgeon will agree to your surgery

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Hovverry Fri 13-Mar-20 20:05:22

My mum had this done aged 51. She couldn’t take Ibuproven and couldn’t sleep for the pain while she waited 22 months for her op. She was delighted with the result and that was 24 years ago. Her artificial hip shows no signs of wearing out.

slalomsuki Fri 13-Mar-20 20:16:36

Had my right hip done just before Christmas and it's OK. Was up on crutches the next day and home on day 2 after the op having managed some stairs at the end of day 1.

Before the op I was on 1500mg naproxen daily with paracetamol and codeine top ups morning and night and couldn't sleep more than 2 hours at night in a sitting up position. I walked with a limp and couldn't manage stairs without pulling myself up on the handrail.

Now I have almost mobility back but still struggle with socks and toe nails. There is some pain but it's muscular rather than the joint but it's bearable and I can manage stairs easily now.

No real physio afterwards just advised to do some simple exercises for 6 weeks then walk loads. Was driving again after 6 weeks but would have been sooner had it been my other leg as I have an automatic.

I held off for ages before getting it done but I should have done it sooner. I had to force the issue with the consultant in the end due to my age

MooseBeTimeForSummer Thu 07-May-20 05:18:21

Update. My appointment in March was cancelled due to Covid. I had a telephone consult today and I’m on the list for surgery! The wait time before this all kicked off was 5-7 months. I’ve asked to go on his cancellation list. The triage appointment I had really disheartened me. I thought I was going to have to fight my corner today. I shouldn’t have worried. I think I might tell him when I see him in person just how bad the junior doctor was I saw at the triage clinic.

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