A natural question after hip replacement surgery is “How long after hip replacement can I walk unaided?” – in other words, without a walker or a cane.
The amount of time it takes before you are walking unaided after hip replacement varies, because there is a recovery process involved.
But let’s talk about typical timelines to expect after hip replacement surgery, and answer the following questions in this post:
And if you have hip problems or are considering surgery as a solution, we’ll also tell you how to find specialists for hip pain in Baltimore.
With a total hip replacement, you can often walk right away and go home from the medical center using an assistive device like a walker, cane, or crutches.
However, you will likely need at least 2-6 weeks while you initially recover before walking unaided after hip replacement.
Keep in mind that your physical therapist will be helping you identify your level of pain and comfort, as well as your gait.
In the initial weeks of recovery, your gait will not be normal, even if you don’t need an assistive device. As the weeks and months go by, you will see progress on a timeline that is unique to you.
Whether it takes 8 weeks or 8 months to get back to walking completely normally, it is important to be patient and listen to your body.
Walking normally after hip replacement will depend on several factors: the type of hip replacement surgery, your personal health profile, your commitment to recovery, genetics, and preexisting health conditions.
Read More: Types of Hip Replacements
Eventually, you will be able to walk longer distances after your surgery. However, for the first 2-6 weeks you should aim to keep your walking distance short.
Limit physical activity to your home, or nearby your home if walking outside. This can avoid damaging the site of your surgery as it properly heals.
After the initial 2-6 week recovery period, you can start walking longer and longer distances — building up gradually.
For instance, at around 6 weeks, you might start walking as much as one mile at a time, slowly adding more distance as you feel more comfortable.
Some patients begin walking for 20-30 minutes at a time within 6 weeks of surgery. But recovery can vary from several weeks all the way up to 12 months.
It’s important not to compare yourself with others. Instead, consult with your doctor and physical therapist to put you on the path for the safest way to achieve a speedy recovery and return to walking normally.
If you have hip pain and are considering hip replacement surgery in the Baltimore area, contact the specialists at Saint Agnes Orthopedics for a consultation today.