Get your questions answered
In anticipation of what to expect after surgery, we would like to share frequently asked questions and answers to prepare you.
How do I put on my pants?
Use a long-handled reacher. Insert the operated leg into the pants first.
How do I put socks on?
You will need to use a sock aid or have someone assist you. Do not bend over to touch your feet after hip replacement.
How do I put on shoes?
Wear slip-on shoes and use a long-handled shoehorn if necessary. If you desire, you can convert shoes with laces into slip-on shoes by replacing the shoelaces with a piece of elastic.
How do I get this equipment?
A hospital discharge planner will help this while you're in the hospital.
Can I perform household chores?
Yes, as long as you don't stoop or bend too much. But remember, this is a good time to delegate; give the job to someone else. If you must do certain jobs, remember that you do have some movement restrictions.
How do I get into the car?
Have the car parked several feet away from the curb. Standing in the street, turn your back to the car and sit down on the seat while extending your operated leg. Remember not to lean forward. Slide slowly back on the seat, keeping your legs straight. Swing your legs around the front of the seat to rest on the floor. Make sure your hips are higher than your knees; do not sit in a low bucket seat. You may want to sit in the back seat with the operated leg propped up on the seat. Keep your feet together and your knees apart.
What position do I sleep in after hip replacement?
The perfect position is to lie on your back. Use a regular pillow between your legs whenever you are in bed for the first few weeks after surgery unless instructed to discontinue this by Dr. Monesmith. A pillow under your shoulders (upper body) also is helpful. You may sleep on your side with a pillow between your legs.
What changes do I have to make in my bathroom?
You will need a toilet seat extension, as most toilets are lower than knee height. Avoid bending during toilet hygiene (stand if needed). Showering will likely require the use of a chair of proper height. (You cannot take a bath after surgery for a few weeks, as getting in and out of the tub involves too much bending at the hip.) Use a long-handled bath sponge to wash your feet. You may need to use a long-handled reacher. You may also stand in the shower.