Muscle spasms years after hip replacement surgery

Posted by Sam22 @sandigrant, Nov 8, 2018

I have been going to physical therapy to try to strengthen my muscles two years after hip replacement. I get frequent spasms in my thigh and my therapist is stumped. The trigger is stretching the muscles while on the balls o my foot. I do deep breathing to relax the muscle and after a few seconds let’s like it never happened.

I had a posterior laterl approach THR the end of September. During surgery I was exposed to latex which I am very allergic to. I was on high dose steroids for two months to try and relieve the allergy issues. As soon as the steroids wore off I was left with lateral thigh pain going down to my knee like a hook around my knee. When I am sitting I have no pain. The pain begins when I stand up or walk. It is like a spasm that makes my muscles around my knee not want to work. Prior to my hip replacement I was very active and right now I can hardly do any of my normal activities. My surgeon has no idea what is wrong and I saw another revision surgeon for a second opinion. He too was stumped and said he could send me to a neurologyst for an EMG. Has anyone experienced this after a THR?

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@norskjenta49

I had a posterior laterl approach THR the end of September. During surgery I was exposed to latex which I am very allergic to. I was on high dose steroids for two months to try and relieve the allergy issues. As soon as the steroids wore off I was left with lateral thigh pain going down to my knee like a hook around my knee. When I am sitting I have no pain. The pain begins when I stand up or walk. It is like a spasm that makes my muscles around my knee not want to work. Prior to my hip replacement I was very active and right now I can hardly do any of my normal activities. My surgeon has no idea what is wrong and I saw another revision surgeon for a second opinion. He too was stumped and said he could send me to a neurologyst for an EMG. Has anyone experienced this after a THR?

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I’m also allergic to latex and had my left hip replaced 4 months ago. I don’t think I was exposed during surgery but 2 months later my right knee felt swollen and I was in excruciating pain with a swollen meniscus! I had a cortisone shot 3 weeks ago with no relief so last week I had an MRI. With muscle spasms and knee pain I was miserable. I tried some healthy suggestions. Amish muscle spasm remedy from Amazon, turmeric, E, & D and magnesium. Pain in knee is gone! Go natural it seems to work!

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It's been four years since my posterior right hip replacement. After surgery, I wanted a good outcome, so I not only did the required physical therapy, I continued almost six months on my own at the same facility (for a small fee). From the time of my surgery, sometimes when I get into the car, if I do it like an average person, reaching the right leg inside while beginning to ease onto the seat, then the left, I get severe muscle spasms that start in the groin area and reach around to the glutes area in the back. They were so bad when I first got them I thought my hip was popping out of joint. The doctor assured me this is not what is happening.

I MUST stand to make them go away. My therapist explained that that switches to other muscles and usually makes it go away. Not always, sometimes I have to walk it out. Not real convenient on an expressway on vacation towing a camper! Now, four years later, despite getting in the car with my knees together, I can still have them; this does not happen every time. I can set them off in other ways, reaching into the back seat of the car from the passenger seat, switching gears on my three-wheeled bike, and the gears don't take immediately, and my leg spins forward quickly with a small jerk. I have had such severe spasms once I tried four times to get into the car to drive home and could not even get seated onto the seat, even after walking around a while between and trying again. I thought I was going to need to call my husband to come and get me. The muscles affected can stay sore for a day or more after a bad one.

What sort of doctor should I see for this? I have had additional physical therapy at least three times in four years. I am very tired of physical therapy and don't feel that is the answer. My surgeon has no suggestions. My family doctor just keeps sending me for physical therapy. Is this something that can be fixed surgically? Was a muscle cut and not healed back together correctly?

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@autumnleaves01

It's been four years since my posterior right hip replacement. After surgery, I wanted a good outcome, so I not only did the required physical therapy, I continued almost six months on my own at the same facility (for a small fee). From the time of my surgery, sometimes when I get into the car, if I do it like an average person, reaching the right leg inside while beginning to ease onto the seat, then the left, I get severe muscle spasms that start in the groin area and reach around to the glutes area in the back. They were so bad when I first got them I thought my hip was popping out of joint. The doctor assured me this is not what is happening.

I MUST stand to make them go away. My therapist explained that that switches to other muscles and usually makes it go away. Not always, sometimes I have to walk it out. Not real convenient on an expressway on vacation towing a camper! Now, four years later, despite getting in the car with my knees together, I can still have them; this does not happen every time. I can set them off in other ways, reaching into the back seat of the car from the passenger seat, switching gears on my three-wheeled bike, and the gears don't take immediately, and my leg spins forward quickly with a small jerk. I have had such severe spasms once I tried four times to get into the car to drive home and could not even get seated onto the seat, even after walking around a while between and trying again. I thought I was going to need to call my husband to come and get me. The muscles affected can stay sore for a day or more after a bad one.

What sort of doctor should I see for this? I have had additional physical therapy at least three times in four years. I am very tired of physical therapy and don't feel that is the answer. My surgeon has no suggestions. My family doctor just keeps sending me for physical therapy. Is this something that can be fixed surgically? Was a muscle cut and not healed back together correctly?

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Hi @autumnleaves01, welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. You'll notice that I moved your message to this existing discussion that @sandigrant started a while back. Your spasms seem describe the exact situation that she was experiencing. I also want to connect you with @jonpaulcobaltpo @loiscapecod @lioness @owieann @scottb32 @vlynne @pattiez and the other members who are taking part in this discussion in the hopes that they're experiences will offer help for you. You can click VIEW & REPLY to scroll through past posts.

I can imagine that it is frustrating to continue with physical therapy if the spasms are not getting better. Have you considered massage or acupuncture?

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@autumnleaves01

It's been four years since my posterior right hip replacement. After surgery, I wanted a good outcome, so I not only did the required physical therapy, I continued almost six months on my own at the same facility (for a small fee). From the time of my surgery, sometimes when I get into the car, if I do it like an average person, reaching the right leg inside while beginning to ease onto the seat, then the left, I get severe muscle spasms that start in the groin area and reach around to the glutes area in the back. They were so bad when I first got them I thought my hip was popping out of joint. The doctor assured me this is not what is happening.

I MUST stand to make them go away. My therapist explained that that switches to other muscles and usually makes it go away. Not always, sometimes I have to walk it out. Not real convenient on an expressway on vacation towing a camper! Now, four years later, despite getting in the car with my knees together, I can still have them; this does not happen every time. I can set them off in other ways, reaching into the back seat of the car from the passenger seat, switching gears on my three-wheeled bike, and the gears don't take immediately, and my leg spins forward quickly with a small jerk. I have had such severe spasms once I tried four times to get into the car to drive home and could not even get seated onto the seat, even after walking around a while between and trying again. I thought I was going to need to call my husband to come and get me. The muscles affected can stay sore for a day or more after a bad one.

What sort of doctor should I see for this? I have had additional physical therapy at least three times in four years. I am very tired of physical therapy and don't feel that is the answer. My surgeon has no suggestions. My family doctor just keeps sending me for physical therapy. Is this something that can be fixed surgically? Was a muscle cut and not healed back together correctly?

Jump to this post

@autumnleaves01 Thank you Colleen for inviting me to respond I hope this helps. I have had 2 back fractures and because of this my nerves are impinged going into groin to thigh area. It gives me a lot of spasms from the muscles . I use a TENS unit this sends a electrical charge very mild to higher you can adjust it to your comfort level. After 20 min. my muscles are relaxed .I dont have to use it a lot only when my muscles spasm as you are talking about .Yes I have used the vinegar and also Epsom salts either in bathtub I cant do this anymore so I use a wash cloth make sure it is warm to hot water leave on till cools. This helps a lot.

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@lioness

@autumnleaves01 Thank you Colleen for inviting me to respond I hope this helps. I have had 2 back fractures and because of this my nerves are impinged going into groin to thigh area. It gives me a lot of spasms from the muscles . I use a TENS unit this sends a electrical charge very mild to higher you can adjust it to your comfort level. After 20 min. my muscles are relaxed .I dont have to use it a lot only when my muscles spasm as you are talking about .Yes I have used the vinegar and also Epsom salts either in bathtub I cant do this anymore so I use a wash cloth make sure it is warm to hot water leave on till cools. This helps a lot.

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@autumleaves I forgot to tell you search for TENS unit.com and it will show you the unit and explain how to use it .

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I know about the TENS units because they used it at physical therapy several times. I guess I should consider that. It might help when I Have set it off a few times and it seems more sensitive. Sometimes it is sore from days and seems extra possible to set it off again on those days.

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@autumnleaves01

I know about the TENS units because they used it at physical therapy several times. I guess I should consider that. It might help when I Have set it off a few times and it seems more sensitive. Sometimes it is sore from days and seems extra possible to set it off again on those days.

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@autumleaves Dont you just love how it relaxes the muscles. I sure do Then there is ice I use also which helps . If more people new about the TENS and how it makes you feel I'm sure they would get one to use

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@lioness

@autumleaves Dont you just love how it relaxes the muscles. I sure do Then there is ice I use also which helps . If more people new about the TENS and how it makes you feel I'm sure they would get one to use

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@autumnleaves01 @lioness
It sounds as if you both have experience with the TENS unit. My physical therapist tried one on me one time when I was there, for my hip bursitis. It seemed to feel good when I was using it but immediately after that passed and it was back to hurting.

Generally, does the TENS unit help beyond when you have it on the area?
JK

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@contentandwell

@autumnleaves01 @lioness
It sounds as if you both have experience with the TENS unit. My physical therapist tried one on me one time when I was there, for my hip bursitis. It seemed to feel good when I was using it but immediately after that passed and it was back to hurting.

Generally, does the TENS unit help beyond when you have it on the area?
JK

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@contentandwell How long did you set it for ? I put mine on for 20minutes and then rest for awhile before doing anything. I generally only have to use it once but you do have to repeat when it starts again to spasm It relaxes the muscles and if the nerves are trapped in muscles it will relax enough to let the nerve get back to normal . One thing I do when I have the TENS on is use heat on top of it while it works or ice . Just using it alone isnt as good as putting these on . My chiropractor always used heat or ice and set it for 20 minutes

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How can we post? I’m new just joined

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