Living Pain Free: Coping with arthritic pain, and the relief a joint replacement can offer

12 November 2014

One patient shares the change a hip replacement has made to her life

For many, winter is a time filled with the fun of the festive season and crisp winter walks, but for those suffering with osteoarthritis the season can bring additional discomfort. Business Development Assistant, Nicola Price, speaks to one patient who knows the pain winter can bring and how she got her life back.

Mrs Jill Maynard, a bubbly 70-year-old woman who lives in Luton with her husband, had a total hip replacement under the care of consultant orthopaedic surgeon Mr Brian Bradnock in July this year.

Spire patient Mrs Jill Maynard after a hip replacement

Jill found the pain in her hip unbearable before her hip replacement. She tells Nicola, “I could hardly walk, I was in so much pain. I used a stick and a frame, and getting up the stairs at home was horrendous. The only time I could move was when I went swimming.”

Jill was on multiple types of pain killers before the surgery to try and ease her discomfort; when asked about the pain after surgery, Jill smiles, “I’m not on anything now.”

The process of booking an appointment with a consultant at Spire Harpenden Hospital is simple. It can be arranged through your GP, or you can call the hospital directly to arrange a consultation.

Jill’s hip was in bad shape when she booked her appointment with Mr Bradnock. She explains: “When we first met Mr Bradnock he showed us the X-ray of my hip on the screen; there was no cartilage, so he said he needed to replace it completely. In just one consultation I spoke to Mr Bradnock, he took X-rays of my hips, and gave me a date for surgery. It was so slick!”

Jill continues by praising the care she received in her five day stay at Spire Harpenden Hospital. “The whole team were absolutely wonderful, nothing was too much trouble. I couldn’t fault the place!”

The short waiting times at Spire Harpenden Hospital mean that consultations and surgery can be booked quickly and for a date which suits you, leaving you free to enjoy the festive season with more independence and less pain.

Jill’s hip replacement has improved her life “dramatically”. Her husband Bill adds that, “it was so nice to see her when she wasn’t grimacing with every step”.

She has been told she looks younger now as she can stand straight and is happy and relaxed. As she is more active, she can now take part in her hobby of short mat bowling, something which she had had to stop while the pain in her hip was bad.

Consultant orthopaedic surgeon Mr Brian Bradnock, who treated Jill at Spire Harpenden, offers this advice for those with osteoarthritis this winter:

  • Be careful when walking on slippery surfaces at this time of year, as you are more likely to fall over due to the reduced and slower movement in joints
  • I would advise walking with a stick or two and wearing shoes with good grip to prevent slipping
  • If you know you need a joint replacement, I recommend doing exercises to strengthen muscles, such as swimming, beforehand as this speeds up the post op recovery.

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