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Hip replacement surgery is a common medical procedure that anyone who wears out their hip joint could need at some point in their life. When you have a disability such as Spina Bifida it’s a more of a major surgery than it would be for an abled person because of your dislocated hips. My hips have been dislocated since birth which doctors say is harmless and you don’t need to do anything about it unless it starts to give you pain. In 2020 I needed hip replacement surgery because my right hip started to give me pain which I knew might eventually happen but hoped it never would. When I had hip replacement surgery some people that do not understand my disability were asking why don’t you do both hips at the same time and knock it out all in one surgery? I like the idea of doing two surgeries at the same time because that is one less surgery I would have to do and sometimes it is possible to do two surgeries at the same time, but hip replacement is not one of those surgeries where you would do both at the same time. It is too major of surgery, for people with Spina Bifida and even I could do both at once I don’t think I would because the recovery would be a lot harder, and I would need more help than necessary. In this post I am going to talk about why having two hip replacements at the same time is not a good idea.
I wouldn’t be able to walk with two hip replacements- People that suggest I do both hips at the same time in my experience have never had a hip replacement or understand the complexities of Spina Bifida because it would not be better to knock it out all out in one surgery but would be much worse. When you have a hip replacement with Spina Bifida it’s different because doctors have to cut the bone and put your hip in the corrected position which you would have to do for abled person because it would already be in the correct position. After I had hip replacement surgery, I walked with a limp like everyone does but for me, it was different because I had to get used to a whole new way of walking. I lost mobility in my right leg that we hope will come back as I get stronger and the only reason I can walk is because I have one good leg that I can full extend that helps me with keeping my balance. The thought of doing two hip replacements at once sound like it would be a great idea but it’s not a terrible idea because I don’t think I would be able to walk if neither of my legs fully extended and would need significantly more help to do basic tasks.
I don’t think I could have dealt with double the pain- I have had dozens of surgeries and a lot of my surgeries I would never want to be repeated because they were horrible surgeries but from all the surgeries I can remember nothing is worse than a hip replacement. I don’t think any of my other surgeries have affected my mental health in more ways than hip replacement has and it’s mostly because the pain was a lot worse than I thought it would be. Hip surgeries are some of the most painful surgeries you can and even if it was two hip replacements was possible I would never do both at the same time because doubling the pain would be pure torture and I don’t know why anyone would ever want to do that to themselves. Most surgeries I have had I make a full recovery in a month and after about two weeks I sometimes still have discomfort but I am mostly painful. When you have hip replacement surgery recovery is not that quick and I had reasonably high pain levels for about six months. It was terrible because I was not sleeping well for several months and due to high pain levels it even affected my ability to go to the bathroom. I don’t think I have ever had a surgery where I go so depressed because of high pain levels that I quite literally wanted to remove a body part and the thought of having double the amount of pain is terrifying.
It’s not given as an option– People are very quick to suggest a double hip replacement but what a lot of people don’t understand is that it’s not typically given as a choice. Hip replacement surgery is necessary for some people but it’s not typically recommended you do both at the same time and if both of your hip started hurting at the same time you often will be asked what is worse. There may be some instances where doctors will do a double replacement but I have never heard of it happening and especially wouldn’t do it if you had Spina Bifida because rehabilitation is hard work and you would have to put in twice as much effort which most people would not want to do. I was not given the option to do both at the same which should tell you that if doctors aren’t suggesting it that it’s probably not a good idea. I think that reason doctors don’t suggest to do both at once is because it would make your life a whole lot harder than it has to be and for some people cause a lot of trauma.
A second hip replacement is not always necessary- When you have Spina Bifida hip replacement surgery is only necessary if your hips start bothering you and doctors don’t typically rush to do it because it’s not always successful. There have been medical advancements in hip replacements with Spina Bifida and there are more successful surgeries than there used to be, but you still can’t guarantee movement will return because you can’t change someone’s disability which is usually the reason some is having trouble regaining movement. I am well aware that I may have to do my other hip at some point but currently it’s not giving me pain and I am not going to touch it until it does. Why would I put myself through double the amount of pain when we don’t even know if a second hip replacement will ever be necessary?
When you have Spina Bifida hip replacement surgery is not always necessary and for some people who aren’t able to walk recovery might not be as long as it is for me because you won’t have to put in as much effort as I do. People sometimes think that doing both hips at once would be a better option, but it would be worse because I would have no movement in either of my legs which would make me more dependent on others and I am not even going to consider a second surgery until I regain movement in my other leg. I like the idea of doing two surgeries at once and if it was a stoma surgery, I probably would give it a thought but for some surgeries it’s better to break it up into two because it can create unnecessary challenges and worsen someone’s mental health. A double hip replacement sound like would be a good idea but for me it would be worse because it would make my already hard life even harder. If you have any questions as to why I did not do a double hip replacement, please comment below and I will do my best to answer.
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