Total Hip Replacement Surgery

I began my day by having the appointment with my surgeon, Dr. Riley Campbell.  He gave the go ahead for having the total hip replacement.  He estimates that it will happen near the end of summer.  I have been waiting nearly two years to hear this news, so I am very happy it is finally here.  I have lost 100 lbs. so far in order to receive a better outcome.  To do this I have been following the Ideal Protein Protocol which is a Ketogenic diet, consisting of low carbohydrates and an adequate amount of protein.  I eat a protein bar for breakfast, lunch consists of two cups of vegetables and from 4 to 6 oz. of protein ( beef, chicken, pork, salmon).  There are other choices but these are the ones I have chosen.  My favorite vegetable has been zucchini.  I also love cabbage and hamburger with seasonings of salt free Montreal Steak sauce, Ideal Protein Salt, and stir fry sauce and fry it with Grape Seed Oil.  Excluded from the diet is dairy, fruit, bread, pasta, rice and potatoes.  I thought I would miss these, but I haven’t.  To make up for the lack of nutrients I would usually get I daily take multi-vitamins, cal/mag. and potassium supplements.

 

 

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Mother’s Day

My day started out with two hours of sleep.  I had severe muscle movements for six hours straight through the night.  An interesting development though, was discovering when I listen to music,  the muscle movements go in time with the music.  It was very interesting to feel the music go throughout my body, one  muscle contraction after another.  I listened to the Mormon Tabernacle choir for a long time.  It made the contractions not as distressing.  My muscles were pretty sore in the morning, especially in my back and legs and surrounding my arthritic hips.

My morning was not to fun with the sensitive hearing and my mind was not able to concentrate on the speakers at church.  By the time church was over I was glad to be going home where it was quieter and I could relax and put a cold pack on my back.  I had a nap in the afternoon which I needed badly .

I received Happy Mother’s Day wishes and a special dinner cooked from my wonderful husband who does so much for me every day.

Getting Ready for the Sabbath

I haven’t had nearly as many muscle movements today and my head hasn’t hurt as badly. I was expecting to have more anxiety than I have, so that’s a good thing.  I was able to get six hours sleep last night and a short nap this morning.  I did some research to see if I could relieve some symptoms I am having with constipation and my sinuses.  I found that Horseradish root has properties that help with inflammation and also regulates the bowel.  It will also help me lose weight as a diuretic.   Doral mixed 1 tablespoon of horseradish in 1 oz. of milk and I chugged it down quickly before it settled to the bottom.  It wasn’t bad going down, just had some shivers afterwards.

Horseradish

With more of the morphine out of my system, I am experiencing more pain in my hip, but my bowels are working better.   I’m so looking forward to Monday when I see the surgeon about being put on the waiting list for total hip replacement.

To get ready for the Sabbath day I do everything on Saturday so I’m not rushed on Sunday.  I have my bath, wash my hair and do my nails.  I also lay out the clothes I’m going to wear to church.  I look forward to going to church to take the Sacrament and associating with other members of the church.  There is such a peaceful feeling at church that leaves me feeling refreshed for the next week.

 

 

Sleep, or Lack Thereof

One of the challenges with withdrawal is insomnia.  I have gone 36 hrs. without sleep.

The last few days have been difficult.  I have tried to sleep only to develop the Chorea movements which make it impossible to sleep.  Last night was particularily challenging.  I discontinued 10 mg. of long acting Morphine and by hour 24 the withdrawals from that drug kicked in.  My head hurt so badly I cried and cried.  My left arm was also hurting and had a burning crawling feeling in it, so I was rubbing it and my head and face.  On top of that I was having terrible severe Chorea movements, which are  intense muscle contractions that move from one part of the body to another accompanied by shaking.  Feeling overwhelmed,  I cried out to God to help me, but soon realized it was something I needed to do on my own; He could only give me the strength to endure.  Doral would have come to help , but he was in bed asleep and I didn’t want to wake him.

The symptoms eventually subsided and I was able to sleep for a few hours.  Today the withdrawal symptoms have been less and my head doesn’t hurt like before.  I was able to nap in the morning and afternoon.   Knowing sleep is important for recovery and for my weight loss, I was thankful I could eventually sleep.

Here is an article about the risks of developing movement disorders from using anti depressants.  Although rare, it happens more than people realize.

Copy and paste into your web browser to view:

 

https://www.aacp.com/pdf%2F0810%2F0810ACP_Madhusoodanan.pdf

 

Management of Thoughts

These are some of the methods I’ve used to manage the unusual thoughts I have had throughout withdrawal.  By the way, some doctors call it discontinue  syndrome.

  1.  Thought Stopping – When a nagging thought occurs, picture the word NO in your mind and the word NO.  Follow with a deep relaxing breath.  ( Not my favorite method)
  2. Progressive Relaxation-  Starting with your hands, tighten and relax them as you take a breath, counting to four in through your nose and blow out through your mouth.  Continue doing this with your belly muscles and legs.
  3. Another form of Progressive Relaxation ( My favorite)-  With your mind, going down your body, notice any areas of your body which are tense and relax them while using the breathing technique above.  It feels like a warm wave going throughout your body.
  4. Thought Challenging-  Replace negative thoughts with realistic thoughts..

There are many other forms of Relaxation methods, each works better for one person than another.

Doctor Appointment

I went to the doctor this morning .  She had video taped me having the seizure like movements and she got a second opinion.  They both agreed that the movements were not seizures but what is called Choreatic movements caused by the withdrawal of psychiatric drugs.  Finally someone has listened to me!  I started having these in 1986 after being put on the drug Nardil.  I will be having this movement disorder until I have lost all my excess weight because the drugs are stored especially in the fat cells and as I lose the fat, the drugs come out with it ,causing withdrawal symptoms.  Fun …. fun…. fun.

I am presently taking 10 mg. of long acting morphine for the arthritis, which I have also been decreasing. I was originally on 5o mg.  I begin tapering the morphine again tonight, so my withdrawals will increase again until the morphine clears.  I usually only have increased anxiety, sweating/chills and nausea with the morphine, so I can handle that.

I know all of this is temporary and looking ahead I will feel so much better.  When I start thinking negative things like I can’t handle this anymore I make myself think about the future positives and name them one by one.

I see my orthopedic surgeon on Monday to be put on the waiting list for total hip replacement.  So, hopefully by the end of summer everything will start turning around for me.  🙂

Coping with Withdrawal

There have been many symptoms of the withdrawal which have been very difficult to cope with.  Some of the symptoms I have had are seizures like movements, headaches or burning sensation in head, anxiety, insomnia, sweating and chills, muscle and joint aches and pain, blurred vision, sensitive hearing, unusual thinking.

I haven’t found anything that stops the seizure like movements as they are involuntary, but I do try to relax when I have them and make sure I am well supported.

The anxiety comes and goes.  I do deep breathing and activities that promote relaxation such as visualization of peaceful scenes, coloring, music, enjoying the outside sunshine on my skin, prayer, computer games for a distraction.   There is the CD by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir named ” Love is Spoken Here” which leaves me feeling peaceful inside.

The insomnia is a problem  I struggle with.  After I say my prayers,   I try to relax as much as possible first, then do some visualization.   I have set a time for sleep.  I make sure the room is dark by wearing a sleep mask.  I also make a bathroom trip and stop drinking water earlier in the evening.  Making sure I am comfortable with muscle cream is important to me because I have severe  hip arthritis.  I also take Naproxen when the pain is severe.  I am also on Lyrica for pain.

Sweating and chills.  Have a good hand fan and blankets close at hand.  I use a Nikken blanket that has magnets and is made of material which helps the muscle pain.

Sensitive hearing.  I make sure the televison is turned down and if that is not enough I use ear plugs.  I find the organ in church loud , so I wear ear plugs there too.  I aTso need them when going to the movie theater.  The stress from loud noises can bring on the seizures, so I have to be careful.

The unusual thinking is managed by thought stopping,  staying in the present by doing things which keeps my mind off my thoughts.

My relationships with friends and especially with the Lord has helped me cope with withdrawal.  Through prayer I have received ideas that have resulted in resolving problems I have had during the day or week.  Also, people have been placed in my path when I have needed them at critical times.  At the end of the day I write down the blessings I have received and what I have learned.