Keeping Up With the Grandkids: Hip Replacement Surgeries Have Been a Game Changer for Hubbard

There were a number of reasons Kathleen Hubbard wanted to have hip replacement surgery and be free of the arthritis pain hindering her daily; starting with 21.

That’s the number of grandchildren Hubbard has, ages 17 years down to 3 months, and being able to enjoy quality time with the little ones was a priority.

“I wanted to be able to get on the floor and play with my grandkids,” she said.

Hubbard also wanted to get back to her exercise routine.

“I’m a walker,” she said, noting that six years ago she completed the Falmouth Road Race.

But the pain in her hips, due to what she said was “bone on bone” from the arthritis, was getting in the way.

Woman dancing with her son at a wedding
Less than three months after having same-day posterior hip replacement surgery, Kathleen Hubbard enjoyed dancing with her son at his wedding.

Hubbard said because she was just 60 years old at the time of her first hip replacement, her orthopedic surgeon, Michael Ayers, MD wasn’t pushing the procedure.

“On my first one, he was hesitant because of my age and wanted to wait a while,” she said.  “But I know my pain threshold.”

Hubbard said she first tried cortisone shots, including under X-ray injections, in which a needle with medication is inserted into the hip joint using a real-time x-ray (fluoroscopy) to guide the injection. 

“I tried that for about a year, but found no real relief from the shots,” she said.

So in August 2019, Hubbard had her first posterior hip replacement. Following the surgery and a two-day stay at South Shore Hospital, her recovery including 12-weeks of physical therapy went well.

While Hubbard’s left hip was feeling good, the painful arthritis in her right hip continued to interfere with her active lifestyle and she decided to have a second hip replacement surgery in April 2022.

While the procedure was the same, Hubbard’s experience this spring was very different.

Rather than a two-day hospital stay following surgery, Hubbard was home just hours after her joint replacement at South Shore Health’s Ambulatory Surgical Center.

“I arrived at 7:30 AM, had the surgery at 10:30 and was on the way out the door by 4 PM.” she said. “It was great to get home and be able to care for myself.”

Hubbard said her recovery from the same-day posterior hip replacement has been similar to her first procedure, but she said she felt better prepared this time around.

“Dr. Ayers and the staff at South Shore Orthopedics are great and very thorough,” Hubbard said. “They prepare you well for surgery and give you a lot of information so you know what to expect with the procedure and recovery.”

“They even called the next day to check on me,” she added.

A groom dances with his mother at his wedding
During her recovery from her second posterior hip replacement this spring, Kathleen Hubbard said she was looking forward to being able to walk down the aisle with ease and dance with her son at his wedding.

Less than three months after hip surgery and the prescribed physical therapy, Hubbard said she is very happy with the results.

She's back to babysitting – Hubbard watched five of 21 grandkids last weekend – and is also fully enjoying family events, like her son’s June wedding where she walked down the aisle with ease and took several spins around the dance floor.

 “It was a beautiful wedding,” she said. “I’m moving around well and feeling great."  


Learn more about joint replacement surgery and orthopedic care at South Shore Health.