11 October 2009

Hip Links

THR Day is looming, too close for comfort, really. The booking clerk at the hospital says my surgery will definitely be in November, and I'll be given 2 weeks notice. They only book the surgeons' lists 2 weeks in advance. So sometime in 3 - 7 weeks. Gulp.

I thought it would be useful to have a list of 'Hip Links' for people who are on a similar journey (and a place for me to refer to them too!). No doubt I'll add to this list over time.

ETA : don't worry, none of these links have graphic images of surgery. I can't handle them, either ...

So here goes :

Congenital Dislocated Hip (CDH)
Developmental Dislocation of the Hip (DDH)
Hip Dysplasia

Hip Replacements / Treatments

Revision Surgery (replacing an artificial hip when it fails)

Anaesthesia / Trauma

Physiotherapy / Hip Restrictions / Recovery

Patient to Patient Information
  • Surface Hippy - a patient to patient guide to hip resurfacing
  • Hips to You - a patient to patient guide to hip replacement
  • HipWomen - a great, active Yahoo group of women, who all have hip dysplasia. A wealth of information and support! Love you all, ladies!!
  • Hip Universe - THR, resurfacing, PAO group


I have lived with PTSD for most of my life, an effect of multiple traumatic operations and treatment in hospitals from the age of 20 months to 7 years. I don't want to write about all the details just now. Let's just say that hospitals in the late 1960s and early 1970s weren't even slightly child-friendly. What I went through was basically torture / physical abuse, despite the intentions of the surgeons and nurses - not something I could discern at 2 or 3 years of age.

I wasn't diagnosed with PTSD until some years back, but it explains a great deal (my heightened 'startle' reflex, chronic anxiety, hyper-vigilence, constant sense of impending death, inability to speak about my childhood experiences without crying, trouble getting to sleep, needing to sleep with a light on, and so on). I have had some treatment for it (counselling, EMDR) but a lot of fears remain. The nightmares are returning in the weeks leading up to this hip surgery.

This is an extract from the paper from Primary Psychiatry (listed above) :

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder After Surgery

PTSD is most common in trauma surgery patients (eg, victims of burns, motor vehicle collisions, industrial accidents, or assaults), but a significant percentage of patients also develop PTSD following other operations when the post-operative course is prolonged and complicated. Approximately 25% of patients receiving surgical treatment for secondary peritonitis develop PTSD symptoms.

More surgical patients develop some PTSD symptoms than the full syndromal PTSD. The severity of the injury or the illness requiring surgery is not correlated with the development of PTSD. Some patients with no apparent predisposing factors develop PTSD. PTSD appears to be less common in patients who were intoxicated or had a concussion at the time of the traumatic injury, possibly due to impaired memory of the event. PTSD symptom onset is variable in part depending on whether the major traumatic stressor was the injury or hospital experiences. As with PTSD following other traumatic events, the best predictor of the disorder is the presence of acute stress symptoms during the surgical hospitalization. Most post-operative PTSD symptoms decrease by 1 year, but some patients continue to experience chronic symptoms (eg, those with disfiguring burns). Diagnosis of acute stress disorder can be difficult in post-operative patients who have delirium, and in current practice patients are discharged soon after surgery and acute stress symptoms are missed.

Treatment of PTSD in surgical patients follows the same principles as in other patients with PTSD.

Hmmm, clearly my parents should have kept me intoxicated during my many months in hospital, and I would have fared much better ;)

Well, that's as much as I can handle for now ... there are of course a ton more sites, and blogs and much more! The main thing is to always ensure the source of information is reputable - and definitely avoid any graphic images / videos of the actual operation, it's enough to make you ill ...

What else can I end with but a cute pic of Petal, who's now nearly 7 months old!


  1. And a nice bit of knitting she's cuddled up with, too.

    You're in my thoughts. And I guess there's no reson why you can't start drinking now. Three to six weeks of inebreiation shouldn't do too much damage to your liver. OR should we hope for a timely concussion?

  2. You're one hip, chick! Happy 7 months birthday to Petal!

  3. wow 7 months already ?!! She's a cutie...

    From one potential THR candidate to another (my PAO window has closed) thanks for the links - v comprehensive and much appreciated. Fingers crossed for that date asap.

    Dee x

  4. I have an inkling of how you feel, last year my small operation put the wind up me, and I was sure I would die. I was in nervous a bit panicky mode for weeks before hand. The best part was just before the operation when they made me sleep straight away in the pre theatre room. Excellent I say!!! I hope Petal can give you some cheer, she is ever so cute and The Labradors send her some gentle tail wags and happy sniffs!!

  5. I imagine the next few weeks will be tough ones for you. I'm thinking of you and will hold you gently in my thoughts. Be kind to yourself!

  6. Have you tried hypnosis for your PTSD? It's extremely effective (93% according to an AMA study) in resolving psychological issues. It's being used more and more often in the medical field now. Let me know if you'd like info. It helped me heal my PTSD after 27 years of struggling.

  7. I'm a few years out from hip replacement and I have to say, after the recent surgery-of-a-non-orthopedic-nature, and the discovery that I can't handle opiates, I'm more than a little reluctant to even open some of those no-doubt-excellent links of yours.
    Will be sending healing thoughts your way and haunting Facebook



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