Hear from others like you

What are these treatments really like?

Many people suffer from hip or knee pain, and their journeys to recovery vary widely. It can help to read about other people in your situation, and how they were able to overcome hip or knee pain.

See below for stories from people in your situation.

Sue's Story

Sue's Story

In April 2011, Sue twisted her knee during a tennis game.  It was determined that she had a significant grade of arthritis and bone was rubbing on bone in her knee. “The pain was terrible. I had to go up stairs one step at a time, and I certainly could not play tennis.

Following an arthroscopy it did not improve and a knee replacement was recommended in October 2012.  “ I felt a little nervous going into surgery but had utmost confidence in my surgeon.”  During her hospital stay, Sue was encouraged to get up and start moving around with the aid of crutches and commence her exercises.  After leaving hospital, Sue stayed in a rehabilitation facility where she participated in physiotherapy, hydrotherapy (exercises in the pool) and gym work. “I was visiting a physiotherapist even before the surgery. Exercise is so important before and after. I think it makes a really big difference to your recovery. “

Sue is a retired mathematics teacher but remains very active by mentoring student teachers at a Sydney University. As a fan of opera, Sue used to have to take each step slowly one at a time at the Sydney Opera House, but can now easily climb the stairs.  “I’m back doing everything now, even a little tennis. ” Following consultation with her surgeon and physiotherapist, it was agreed that a doubles game of tennis where Sue doesn’t run for the ball would be acceptable.  “Everything just seems to be getting better and better now”. 

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Lyn’s story

Lyn’s story

Lyn had participated in sport all of her life but her mobility had deteriorated so that she could no longer get out of chair without her husband helping her. Lyn now enjoys walking every morning, and being able to go away for short breaks away without having to worry about how you’re going to feel.

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Peter and Graham’s story

Peter and Graham’s story

Farmers from Sydney’s regional west and lifelong friends Peter and Graham (Snowy) share their story of knee replacements 10 and 11 years ago respectively. ‘Before the surgery, if you had have offered me a million dollars, I couldn’t have walked across the street’ Snowy shares. Graham describes his knee replacement ‘as like the first day’, with both enjoying pain-free mobility over a decade after their knee replacements.

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Chris’ story

Chris’ story

A keen bodysurfer and motorcyclist, Chris was finding sport, doing things around the house and being out and about to be ‘hard yakka’. Chris felt he left his hip replacement a year too long, and proceeded with surgery to ensure he could retain his independence. Just 8 weeks after hip replacement, Chris is excited about resuming all of the activities he enjoys.

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Michael's story

Michael's story

Michael had a hip replacement at the age of 65. Having played grade squash since his early twenties, he faced the prospect of giving up his beloved sport.  A fit and active man, Michael jogged, spent time gardening and played squash before surgery.  “When you think you can’t do these things anymore, it can be quite traumatic,” he says.

In early 2012, Michael had a fall and broke a rib. Despite treatment, he was still not fully recovering and “something still felt wrong.”  Michael had to take a significant amount of paracetamol “just to get through each day.” He would sit in the car for around 15 minutes at the end of each workday, just to summon the energy to be able to face the final walk into the house. It was certainly not possible to play squash that he loved.

Following further tests, it was discovered that his hip joint had significantly worn and required replacement.    

“I was a little bit apprehensive but my family convinced me that it was important,” he remembers. My daughter told me  “You’re going to have to do this, dad.” “She had never seen me like this before, having to hold onto the railings to go up and down stairs.” Michael was feeling miserable and the prognosis was that it was only going to get worse. 

Lying in bed in hospital, Michael wondered if he would ever be able to play squash again. After spending time in a rehab hospital, he focussed on regaining his previous fitness levels. 

“100% from the word go I knew I had to do my rehabilitation,” he says. He now goes to the gym two to three times a week.

“I’m now back to the fitness level I had around 12 months ago. I’m so happy to be back on the squash courts again and I’m booked in to the squash pennant games this coming March.“

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Fred's story

Fred's story

I've been playing at the highest level of professional golf since 1989 and it's been a great career. I am really excited to be working with the Stryker team because I have had a history with my knee.

In 2008, I had a surgery which left me bone on bone on the lateral side of my right knee and had a tremendous amount of pain. A lot of instability. I had to have it drained 18 times that year. By the end of the season, I was pretty much shot because I was limping around. I had weakness in my knee and my game deteriorated. I couldn't stay competitive anymore. I decided to have my knee replaced.

I wanted to have a chance to have my lifestyle back and my lifestyle is playing competitive golf. I would be the first guy at the level I was playing at to have a replacement joint and come back. To this day I am just so glad with the decision I made to have my knee replaced. It was a fantastic decision. Probably one of the smartest ones I've ever had if you go back to the history of decisions I made in my life.

  

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Peter's story

Peter's story

When his friends learned Peter needed a double hip replacement at the age of 55, they were surprised. Not only is Peter an aviation operator, a ‘bush pilot’ flying from Queenstown through Milford Sound and the remote areas of Fjordland National Park, he has surfed all his life and has been riding motorbikes, on and off road, for 30 years.

However, Peter was experiencing pain in his hips all the time. During a trip to Noosa, he felt severe pain while sitting on a surfboard and when he returned home to Queenstown he was told that his hips degenerated to the point that he needed both replaced.

Although he’d reached the point where he could no longer lift his leg comfortably over his motorcycle, he had kept putting it down to other things – such as a pulled muscle that could be treated by massage or physio.

“I had figured I was going to be Peter Pan for the rest of my life,” he says.

Peter didn’t see any reason not to do surgery. “Given my active lifestyle, it was no brainer for me deciding to proceed. I felt it was very likely I would have a good outcome, so that made me feel more confident.“

Peter had one hip replaced in 2008, and the second replaced nine months later. The surgeon had recommended operating on the more urgent hip first, but by the time Peter fully recovered from the first procedure, he knew he had to have the other one done. 

He says he wouldn’t have any hesitation if it had been recommended that both be replaced at the same time.

“I didn’t see rehabilitation as a difficult job,” he says. “I worked on the exercises they gave me in hospital and I felt I was pain free from around 3 months.

“Now I can now surf and ride my motorbike again. However, I have been reminded that if I broke a leg falling off my bike this would have implications for my recovery. So I’m taking it just a little bit easier these days!“

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Susan's story

Susan's story

For more than 10 years, Susan lived with terrible knee pain but was told she was too young to have anything done. As the pain increased and her ability to move around deteriorated, she found it difficult to carry out school duties as a teacher. When she was 53, her surgeon recommended bilateral knee replacements.

“Before the operation, I couldn’t walk and I couldn’t bend,” says Susan. “It got to the point that I couldn’t do anything.  Teaching was difficult. I used to work just two days a week, but I had to separate the days just to give myself a few days to recover from that day of work. Just walking lengths of the playground was too difficult to do. I would have ended up in a wheelchair, and I wouldn’t have been able to work.”

She couldn’t even go to a shopping centre, because she knew if you she couldn’t get a close car park it would be too much walking around. “If there was a social or family event, I’d be worried how I was going to manage, and put much thought into ways to minimise walking to, from or during the event.”

Susan says she was a little nervous going into surgery, but wanted to get better so desperately. She took a school term off to give her recovery the best opportunity and took her rehabilitation very seriously. “Even after I completed my two week stay at the rehabilitation hospital, I made up a mini gym at home so I could continue exercising. People had told me you really need to make your joints move to get the best result.”

About six weeks after surgery, she was completely free from knee pain. “Even a few days after surgery, I would describe it as healing pain, not the debilitating pain I was used to. Each day got better and better.”

“I have not looked back one day,” she says.  “It’s been life changing. It amazes me to this day that I don’t feel anything. I can walk around. I can even exercise, so I’ve also lost weight since the operation.”

Best of all, she has been able to travel to see her grandchildren in Queensland – something that was never an option before surgery.  “This year I’m planning an overseas holiday with girls from school. I’m so excited and now I feel that on any day I could do anything!”

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Lorre's Story

Lorre's Story

Lorre Haschke's friends have a hard time keeping up with her these days. Two years after having both hips replaced using a new minimally invasive Direct Anterior Approach that leaves muscles and ligaments intact, the "retired" 59-year-old is back to walking three to five miles a day, riding her bicycle, swimming, volunteering at her local hospital, travelling and being active at church and even hula-hooping for exercise.

Anxious to get on with her life after three years of intense, debilitating pain, Lorre couldn't wait to get up and start moving. Three days after having both her left hip replaced and her knee rebuilt from an earlier fracture, she went home. The next morning, she got out of bed — and without a cane or walker — she washed, put on make-up and drove to her primary care doctor's office.

Her doctor — who had predicted she would need several weeks of rehabilitation, several months of physical therapy and a full year to recover before considering the second hip replacement — was shocked to see her walking, driving and scheduling her next pre-operative appointment just four days post surgery.

 A month later, when Lorre's surgeon replaced her right hip, she didn't even fill the prescription for pain medication. "I didn't have to go to rehab. I required less anaesthesia than with traditional hip replacement. I didn't need pain medication afterwards, and I was back to walking three to five miles a day within a month and a half," she says. "To this day, people who live in my Houston subdivision still knock on my door and ask: Are you the lady who had both hips and a knee done and then we saw you walking? Who do you go to?"

In addition to rebuilt hips and a knee, Lorre, who has brittle bones due to osteoporosis, has also broken her wrist several times. But now that she no longer needs three sessions of acupuncture a week just to be able to walk, sit or lay down, she is always raring to go.

"I'm fine," says Lorre. I go. I do. I'm happy." She adds, "I’m back to the things I love."

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Barbara's story

Barbara's story

At 62, Barbara Cotoia is an active grandmother of six who loves to go shopping with friends and work in her garden. But due to the severe pain she suffered in both her knees, she began missing out on these things. "My grandkids are active and I would have to sit on the side and watch them play, instead of sitting down on the floor and playing with them." Because of her knee pain, Barbara made excuses not to do things with family and friends and says she "felt like an old lady".

Driven by the daily pain and her need to be independent, Barbara finally decided to have both knees replaced. In April 2006, she received bilateral knee replacements.

Barbara had her first knee replaced on April 20th and started rehabilitation the very next day. The second surgery was done a week later on April 27th. A few days later she went to a rehabilitation facility where she did physical therapy three times a day. After ten days at the facility she returned home where she continued her therapy. "Physical therapy was hard but I knew it was an important part of my recovery, so I pushed myself, and I am glad I did." At her six week check-up her doctor removed all restrictions and she was free to go up and down the stairs, didn't need the use of a cane and could drive!

Barbara can now go shopping and walk around the mall with her friends, where before she couldn't. She has returned to her gardening and is able to play trains on the floor with her grandkids!

The surgery has given Barbara back her independence and she can't wait to start travelling. "I can only imagine how far my Stryker knees may take me".

 

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Rosemary’s story

Rosemary’s story

Rosemary felt she was no longer able to enjoy all of the activities she loved and was facing the prospect of a slipped knee cap and moving around on crutches. Following her knee replacements, Rosemary is happy and relieved to be back enjoying photography, gardening, singing, and caring for grandchildren. Rosemary attributes her success to having a positive attitude and her dedication to exercise before and after her knee replacements.

Individual results may vary. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your own potential benefits and risks.

Next Steps

Contact your GP or health professional to discuss your options