What to do about thigh pain after hip replacement, anterior approach?
I had LTHR in August 2021 with an anterior approach.
I have had pain on the outside of my thigh about 1/2 down. The pain is a 7/10 anytime I am standing and or walking, even for short periods of time.
I am on narcotics for the pain management and yet still I have incredible pain.
I’ve had X-rays and MRI, and none have shown anything wrong with the hip joint.
I have had countless visits with a Physical Therapist at $40 a visit with no improvement.
Has anyone else had this problem?
If so, what helped?
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@bbrebozo Good morning – I'm sorry to hear you are having problems after your hip replacement. I'm sure you will find some suggestions from others here on Mayo Connect who have similar experiences.
Let me start by saying I have had 5 hip replacement and revisions. Aside from the fact that my first 2 THR implants eventually caused a big problem for me, my first recoveries were uneventful. The revisions (5 years later) was not so happy. I had tissue in my thigh that was badly damaged by metal poisoning in that leg from the failed first implant, with muscle damage. As I recovered, I had severe pain in that thigh, and had to have a lot of extra PT and gait training. It also took a long time for the muscle to rebuild. Also hip replacement surgery, while seemingly routine, is a big deal – bones are cut & pounded on, muscles & nerves are moved around, and may also be cut or damaged, the change in the hip changes your body mechanics, so your other joints may need to be retrained. Finally every body heals at a different rate, muscles heal faster than nerves; nerves repair and regenerate VERY slowly – and we need to be patient.
If you have not had comprehensive PT since surgery, I suggest you ask your doctor to order it. Ask for a full PT evaluation of your body alignment, posture and gait, not just a routine "after hip" cookie cutter process.
Do you think the doc will do this?
Hi @bbrebozo, I'd like to add my welcome along with @sueinmn. I moved your question to this existing discussion:
– What to do about thigh pain after hip replacement, anterior approach? https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/constant-thigh-pain/
I did this so you can also connect with @rhuck513 @ezas123 and others.
Hi Sue, thank you, yes my doctor ordered PT which I refused because I thought I could do the exercises on my own. He said the order is open for a year so I will follow your advice and do it.
There are so many horror stories on this site which I'm sure is because only the problem cases come here. It seems like my doctor said only 1% have problems so I guess everyone here is in the elite 1%. I feel sorry for anyone just looking into getting joint replacement because I think they're going to get the wrong impression. This has been very helpful for me though… reminds me of that story about the guy who had no shoes and then he met someone with no feet.
I am so happy to read this post, to know I’m not the only one!
I had a right posterior approach partial hip replacement after being knocked over by a person at baggage claim 5 months ago.
(six months earlier I had had a right TKR )
After the surgery I’ve consistently had thigh pain that comes and goes so and numbness from the knee to the ankle.
Ihaven’t gone back to my orthopedic with this complaint, thinking it will go away and attributing the pain to nerve and/or muscle damage. I’ve been doing pilates and some tai chi.
I will look into the MFR and PT as some of you have suggested.
I'm dealing with the same thing…since August of 2021. Many trips to physical therapy, doctors' appointments, pain specialists, etc. I've been receiving Myofascial release for a couple of months now, thanks to Medicare and good insurance, but it has not helped much. I do have a radiofrequency ablation scheduled on Nov 7th, so will see if that helps. I'm on several Rx's to control my pain, depression and anxiety along with treatment for Parkinson's Disease. I'm about at the end of my short rope for hope and help…not sure what will happen next.
Hopefully things change for you soon, and you receive pain relief so you can begin to live a normal life again!
BTW….if it makes you feel any better, I'm happy to know that I'm not the only one with this problem!!! Thank you!
Hi bbrebozo I do know how you feel …. I could not even sit in a car longer than five minutes without being in such pain after my tkr ….it took a few months of exercises and pt this was my first tkr…..I used heat and ice try see which works best for you … with my revision I had recently I was doing myofascial release from the first week out had no thigh issues thankfully….. I think because I was proactive this surgery made all the difference…I know our surgeries are different but same kind of pain and trauma our bodies go through…..a good chiropractor can help one that does cold and laser therapy ….I have found relief with this technique due to my hip giving me sharp pain down my leg …. It is temporary relief but was able to tolerate getting the knots worked out afterwards…..good luck hope you find some relief
I know it's contrary to some advice, but I never use heat to treat myself, always cold. Heat increases blood flow and that increases inflammation. Ice does the opposite and provides some temporary pain relief. I had both knees replaced this year and even though the swelling is mostly gone, I only use ice after a workout.
Some doctors say ice for a few days/weeks to bring down swelling and then switch to heat for tight muscles. Not me. Always ice. Especially for your back. I won't let chiropractors use heat on my back, only cold. FWIW.
I am having thigh pain and my foot on the side of the THR gets red when I stand or walk. I noticed you were having the same issue with your foot. Does your thigh hurt if you touch it?
Cat, I had a very red and swollen lower leg and foot for months after surgery. The redness was more above the ankle than the foot but those problems have largely gone away since I started wearing a compression sock all the time.
The only time my thigh hurts is when walking or doing stairs. It feels like the femur bone is where the pain is coming from, not muscle. About 2/3 of the way down, which is approx where I believe the metal shaft ends.
I tend to think this whole thing might get better on its own over the next few months. Hoping anyway.