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AndeeRN, Nurse
Category: Health
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Experience:  28 years in nursing. Emergency, cardiac, internal medicine, triage for adults and pediatric patient
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What is the recovery time for a hip dislocation ...

Resolved Question:

What is the recovery time for a hip replacement that has dislocated and what types of exercises can be done to rebuild thigh muscles that collapsed during the dislocation?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  AndeeRN replied 8 years ago.

Dear XXXXXo,

Hip dislocations after a replacement occur because all the muscles, etc, are not as aligned as they were when we were younger and healthier. That new hip is less stable.

Some things you should avoid: crossing your legs, sleeping on that side, sitting in low chairs, excessive alcohol consumption.

You are about 80% back to normal after six weeks. It takes time for the inflammation and swelling to go down, and to help build back up some strength.

Your physician may want you to do some physical therapy as an outpatient. What is nice about that is it is tailored, not just to your disease process, but to you personally. You will be evaluated and then placed on a personal program. Then, you followup at home. They also have some things, such as a Theraband, that you can use to help strengthn those muscles.

I am enclosing some exercises found on a site from Orthopeadic Surgery and Sports Medicine Specialists of Hampton Road. Before you tackle ANY exercising at home, please check with your orthopod for clearance. There may be factors why certain movements would be detrimental, rather than helpful.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to let me know.

Best wishes,


1. Ankle Pumps: Move the foot/ankle up and down, make circular movements with the foot. Repeat on both feet 50 times per session.

2. Isometric Adduction/Abduction: Sitting in a chair, place hands along the outside of the thigh. Try to push the legs apart, while resisting with the hands for 10 seconds. Place the hands on the inside of the thighs. Try to bring the knees together, while resisting with your hands for 10 seconds. Repeat 25 times per session.

3. Quadriceps Exercise(Knee Tighteners): Lying on your back with your legs straight, push down with the back of the knee against the floor. Maintain the muscle contraction in the thigh for 10 seconds. Relax. Alternate sides. Repeat 25 times per session.

4. Gluteal Isometric Contraction(Buttock Tighteners): This exercise can be done lying down , sitting or standing. Squeeze the buttocks muscles together and hold for 10 seconds. Repeat 25 times per session.

5. Short Arc Quads: Lie down on your back with a pillow, rolled towel or blanket under the knee( 6-10 inches high). Rest the weight of the thigh on the roll. Lift the heel off the floor while straightening the knee. Hold the knee straight for 10 seconds and slowly lower the heel to the floor. Perform on each side 15 times per session.

6. Shoulder Push-Ups: Sitting in a chair with armrests, push yourself up using your arms. Begin by using your feet to assist you, then progress to putting more weight onto your arms to lift yourself up. Hold 3 seconds. Repeat 10 times per session.

Two other exercises which you will be asked to perform after surgery, during the first 6 weeks at home, are shown. You should become familiar with them.

1. Hip and Knee Flexion: Lying on your back, slowly bend the knee, sliding the heel along the floor up to the buttocks as far as possible. Then lift the heel off the floor, bending the hip and knee. Do not exceed 70 degree angle at the hip.

2. Hip Abduction: Lying on your back with the bolster between your knees, lift you heel just off the floor and bring your leg out to the side 6-12 inches. Try to keep the kneecap pointed toward the ceiling. Place your leg inward back against the bolster.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Since the muscles collapsed as well, is here anthing to rebuild those muscles just above the knee and it has been 4 weeks this coming Monday. I cannot raise my leg up into bed yet as the muscles were torn apart when this happened. Also cannot raise my leg off the floor when sitting in a chair. Any help with this would also be appreciated.
Expert:  AndeeRN replied 8 years ago.

Dear XXXXXo,

Let me see if I can find you some thigh only exercises. Remember to get the okay from the orthopedic surgeon before you attempt any new exercise:

Stretch your leg on the bed, and push down your knee on the bed. Tighten your muscle and make it as hard as possible. You may put a rolled up towel in the hollow of your knee first.

A light workout on a stationary bike, light stair climbing, and water therapy may help.

Straight leg raises: Tighten your thigh muscle with your knee fully straightened on the bed. As your thigh muscle tightens, lift your leg several inches off the bed. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Slowly lower.


Repeat until your thigh feels fatigued. Since you cannot do this yet in bed, what about purchasing something called a theraband? It is basically stretchy band that you can cut (it comes in a roll) and wrap it around the bottom of the foot and hold an end of the band in each hand, and have your arms pull your leg up. You can purchase a roll in any medical supply house. Your insurance may even pay for it with a prescription. I think it is something like $30 for a big roll.

I really highly recommend physical therapy. Those folks are amazing. And water therapy is great because the water is taking all the force while you are reaping the benefits.



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