How long is the recovery?

Patients undergoing minimally invasive total hip replacement generally recover quite quickly. We use a plastic surgery closure, so there are no sutures to be removed. Advancement to the use of a cane for balance and support generally occurs within the first week after surgery. Most patients are able to walk independently without the use of a walker, crutches, or cane by 2-4 weeks after surgery. At this time, most patients are comfortable, no longer requiring pain medication, and are returning to normal activities such as driving, work, shopping, and recreational activities such as swimming or golf.

At 5-6 weeks after surgery, the patient is seen in the office and x-rays of the hip are taken. At this time, all restrictions are lifted and the patient is free to resume an active lifestyle. The exercise program that was taught to the patient in the hospital is modified to include use of a stationary bike to improve mobility of the hip. You may also resume low-impact exercise and sports. See Back to Sports

The following also occur at 6 weeks:

  • Elastic stockings are discontinued. However, a stocking on the operated leg may be used for certain activities when the leg tends to swell a bit, particularly when up on your feet for prolonged periods.
  • Aspirin and iron pills are discontinued.
  • Use of an elevated toilet seat is discontinued.
  • Normal activities such as swimming, cycling, cross-country skiing, golf, doubles tennis, rollerblading, and dancing are resumed. Begin slowly, and advance activity level as your body and discomfort permit.
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