Appointment with physio this afternoon. She watched me walk with both crutches and then showed me how to use one, she said I was limping and should take both crutches out for any distance but around the house definitely one was fine.
We went through the exercises I do, which cover all the necessary muscles and she was very happy with how I did them; she added a couple more to try and said increase the repetitions when I felt comfortable. She said listen to your body as it will tell you when it is ready. She said my consultant does not like squats or exercises done lying face down. She re-iterated wearing the socks for 6 weeks and sleeping on the back for 6 weeks. She said all consultants have a different take on the recuperation, and one of them puts no restrictions on his patients at all, where as mine is quite strict. This explains why when you look at internet chats and sites about THR you see so many different versions of what is allowed. The things that everyone agrees on however, is the 90 degree rule and the not swivelling on the foot or crossing the legs. When you consider this there are actually a lot of things you can do without infringing this ruling.
We discussed stairs, which I am finding I can now walk down normally, but walking up normally does not yet feel wholly ok, and I maybe do a couple properly and then revert. She agreed that that was the best way to do it, every day adding another step or two until I feel comfortable going up and down normally with one crutch. Then try going down without a crutch, etc.
She did know of a pool where there are physio sessions, but suggested we discuss this after the 6 week check. She said she saw no benefit to me of seeing her on a weekly basis, as I understood and was obviously doing the exercises necessary, and in my case it was more a question of taking it easy as my personality was obviously one that liked a challenge and could easily overdo it. Considering I would have been happy to pay for a weekly session I thought that was most impressive. I asked her if any of the THR patients at the Nuffield needed one to one sessions on a weekly basis and she thought hard and could only think of one lady a while ago who needed a lot of support to get mobile. So it would seem to me that maybe my brother's physiotherapy is not really needed - he wont agree though! Maybe consultants are friendly with physios and recommend to patients as insurers will pay up and its win win for everyone!
She said there was no reason not to take off my dressing, so I will do that after my shower later.
I lay on her couch to do some of the movements and it was interesting to see how well my new hip behaved and compare that with the limited movement which is now affecting the other hip! Of course in the usual course of events, if one is not a gym visitor or an exercise class attender, one would not know that the mobility of a joint is affected if all it is asked to do is walk, climb stairs and sit down! So I intend to exercise both sides and hope that when the time comes to have a THR on my left side, the muscles are already as prepared as they can be! I think this must be a couple of years away though as there is no pain from it yet.
I asked her about driving and she said without a doubt I would be driving at 6 weeks and that some patients who had recovered quickly, as I was doing, were happily driving after 4 weeks.
Altogether I was very happy with my hour spent with her. My questions were answered; I felt reassured about my progress; I felt less anxious about exercises. I will see here again in five weeks time.