"Just walk" is the only physical therapy I need after hip replacement. At least that's what the doctor said. DON"T BELIEVE IT!!! I did and now I'm going through intense physical therapy many months later after my hip replacements in September and December of last year.
At first recovery seemed to be going fast and on a positive track. Over the the last few months I started getting tingling and numbness in my feet and eventually up my calf. My legs and hips started feeling stiff and sore. Then the pain of sciatica started down my butt and legs. I'm able to comfortably ride but walking and standing around became uncomfortable and painful.
I went to a neurologist last month and he sent me to a physical therapist. Finally after four weeks (with many more weeks to come) of poking, and pushing and pulling I'm starting to feel normal again. The sciatica is a fraction of what it use to me and the tingling and numbness is substantially reduced. No amount of stretching and exercise on my own could get me where I am today.
Piriformis syndrome is the cause of all the sciatica, tingling and numbness. Some recumbent riders suffer from this syndrome because of the over development of the muscles in our rear ends. For me it was exacerbated because of the big hit my hips and legs took from hip replacement.
The overall stiffness in my hips and legs is primarily due to the trauma my fascia underwent from hip replacement. For lack of better words it's as if my muscles are not sliding around very well and are stuck together.
Mike Burns at Custom Physical Therapy has taken me long way towards recovery. Three sessions a week and plenty of stretching before and after rides as well as in between is the key to getting my life back.
Hip replacement is a major surgery and takes it toll on the entire body. To maintain a healthy and active life after hip replacement surgery physical therapy is essential. Don't learn the hard way like I did.