I have not updated about my hip in awhile because not a lot has been new. I have been slowly making some progress with pain management. It is 1.5 years post op since my third right hip surgery for FAI. Over the summer I made quite a bit of improvement. I don’t use any crutches or walking aids anymore. When I go to the airport I don’t need a wheel chair to get through security unless I’m flying International or its a crazy long line. Also in the last month I have been walking Penny about six blocks a day without my scooter. The blocks in my neighborhood are short blocks and not official city blocks (10 to a mile) so I would estimate 6 blocks at less than half a mile. Penny loves her walks but wants me to walk faster. I think she prefers the scooter because we can walk really fast and really far for a really long time! I have a chubby chihuahua who loves to exercise.
- Walk Penny six blocks no scooter compared to zero blocks just a month ago
- Can go to a party, dog park, and stand for about 45 minutes
- I can do most of my housework
- Go shopping for about 45 minutes without a break (this one is important)
- Less pain at night while sleeping
- Less pain at rest
- Go to the gym but have to be careful.
All these improvements are great but my hip still hurts quite a bit. My hip is better than what it was but it is still not a normal joint. The joint is very unstable, and slippery and I often feel my joint rolling and slipping around in the socket if I step too suddenly or step sideways. Everything I do has to be calculated and I always worry about what my hip can take that day. I can’t do all the things I would like to like travel (flying kills my hip) and sightseeing, hiking, half day shopping, exercising, yoga, biking. Also, I get very tired from dealing with all the pain -its exhausting and I wish I could devout more energy NOT to pain management.
If I want a life where my hip is not holding me back from things I want to do, I will need a hip replacement. I sent my file over to a couple doctors inquiring about a non hip replacement surgery called a Periacetabular Osteotomy (PAO) surgery. Both surgeons said that surgery would probably not help and that I need a hip replacement if I want to feel better.
Right now I am not sure if I should do a hip replacement yet. Daily, I am still struggling with a lot of pain, but so many things can go wrong with a hip replacement surgery. I see my surgeon in one week so I will discuss all of my concerns with him and see what his opinion is on whether I should get a hip replacement or get a second opinion about a PAO surgery.
I am going to consult with more doctors and think about whether I am ready for another big surgery. Surgery is very difficult on your body and difficult emotionally and I have to take time of work and from my hobbies that I enjoy. Plug all of the rehab, exercises and time devoted to physical therapy. A hip replacement is not something I am looking forward to.
Found a comfy office chair
I am one year and a couple months post op from my right hip scope. I am doing alright and as always I have good and bad days. I feel like a broken record but here it goes.
- Off crutches
- Working almost full time
- Exercise at gym is okay
- Stationary bike is okay
- Small weight are okay
- Swimming is okay
- I can make it to the pharmacy alright
- Still in a lot of pain
- Can’t sleep or wake up through the night
- Always tired from not sleeping and from pain
- Hate leaving my house
- Hard to grocery shop
- Pain stresses me out, thinking of surgery stresses me out and my stomach hurts from stress
- Can’t do yoga, run, bike outside
- Can’t do all work activities lifting, bending
- Can’t take Penny hiking or for long walks
Since I am still in a lot of pain, my surgeon believes that I need another surgery. I either need a PAO surgery or a hip replacement. I sent my records to a surgeon in San Diego, Dr Richard Santore, to review my case and see what he says. I also saw a surgeon at Standford, Dr. Bellino, who is not sure what I should do, but agrees I do need to have another surgery.
Visit my beauty blog to see what my life is like outside of my hip.
I am almost 4 months post -op (17 weeks) and I am still in so much pain. My hip muscles tighten up and cause a lot of irritation. Mostly my hip flexor (iliopsoas) and piriformis, but also a bit of adductor mucsle (inner thigh). On top of that I am getting knee pain in my left knee, on my non-operative leg and hip pain in my left hip. And of course, my operative joint hurts tremendously too. Most the time I am in so much pain I am miserable and just want to cry. I want to get a hip replacement so bad, but I am getting so many different opinions from different doctors. I hate being in so much pain and so miserable all the time.
I went to get a second opinion and the surgeon suggested and open PAO surgery. Another surgery that may not work and will be an even harder recovery than a FAI scope.
I feel like Dr. Sampson did an awesome job with my last two scopes. He is a great surgeon and I highly recommend him. I think my hip is just done and I need a replacement. A PAO surgery might be overkill. On the other side, a PAO surgery might me my last chance on not needing a hip replacement. I am really not sure what to do, but I know I can’t live in all this pain. Its so awful!
Muscles of hip
Quick Update: Just thought I would give a quick update. My crutches are totally broken and useless so I guess I’m off crutches. I’ll probably need to get another pair. I’m still in PT, working out, going to the gym and swimming.
Last week I started back volunteering at the animal shelter filming cats. I am happy to be back. I’ve been really busy and hope to update soon. I’m still thinking about a hip replacement.
Check Meowt Cat Shirt from Zumiez
Are You Kitten Me?
I recently bought these shirts at Zumiez so if you like it you can get one too!
I am at 5.5 weeks post-op and I still can’t paint my toes. I have really good range of motion (ROM), but my leg still feels a bit stiff. It is hard to reach my toes. I am having trouble washing my feet in the shower. I use a brush with a long handle to reach my feet. Most of all I want to paint my toes for summer. I dream about pretty, painted toes in all sorts of bright summer colors. I know I could just go get a pedicure, but I have not found a good place to go yet and I want to save money for my summer trip to my hometown.
I start physical therapy next week so hopefully I can work on my ROM and be able to paint my toes soon.
Here is hoping for a pretty summer pedicure.
photo by Deerstop
If you want to see my imPress Press on Manicure visit my beauty blog.
A lot of people have been asking me how I am doing so I thought I would make a quick update. I am still on crutches at 5 weeks post-op. I am suppose to be on crutches a minimum of 6 weeks. I have good days and bad days. Sometimes I am in a lot of pain still and can’t sleep. I have been taking a Tylenol PM the last few nights and that has been helping. Work has been exhausting and takes a lot out of me. In fact everything is exhausting and takes a lot out of me.
I need to rest a lot so I usually sit on the couch with Penny and my ipad and watch tv shows, movies or surf the web. It always helps to ice my hip. I have not been going out much because I just get so tired and it is hard to do anything on crutches.
Overall I am not sure if the surgery worked or not. When I have a bad hip day I really think it was another failed surgery. Once in awhile I can get my pain levels down and I have hope that the surgery worked. I will not be able to tell if the surgery worked until I am off crutches and walking around.
I start physical therapy next Friday. My surgeon said to go really, really slow. I am working with the same great therapist I had for my previous surgery.
My surgeon said he thinks a hip replacement may not help me, but has not ruled a hip replacement out. A hip replacement is a really scary thought because it is a last resort. Sometimes I just want to get a hip replacement. I get really frustrated with recovery sometimes because it sucks being in so much pain and not feeling up to doing anything.
Here is a picture of me on crutches from last year.
The ligament holding my hip in place was fine.
Yesterday I had my four week post-op visit with my surgeon to go over what he did for my third right hip arthoscopic surgery. Before my surgeon even cut my open he could tell that I had a lot of laxity in my hip joint. He could easily pull my hip out of the socket. Once he went into my hip joint he could see adhesions, or scar tissue that had formed. This could be causing some of my pain.
Adhesion inside my right hip
I also had some wearing down and thinning of the cartilage (arthritis) in the front of my hip. My surgeon looked back deep into my socket and found no problems on the top of the head of my femur; no arthritis or problem with the iliofemoral ligament holding my joint in place.
My surgeon saw some bumpy regrowth of the bone that he had previous removed. The bone grew back! My surgeon shaved off this bumpy bone again and also took a little bit more bone off my acetabulum. In the picture below you can see two bumpy regrowths on my femoral head. They remind me of warts. I hope they don’t grow back again.
Bumpy bone regrowth on femoral head
After my surgeon was satisfied with smoothing out the bone growth in my hip joint he had to close up the capsule covering my hip joint. He used cadaver tendon tissue to cover my hip joint to tighten the capsule and sutured the cadaver tissue in place.
My surgeon instructed me to take it very, very slow. Don’t do a lot of activity. I am going to start physical therapy but I have to go extremely slow. I am going to wean off of my crutches in the next few weeks.
Overall, this surgery was less extensive than my previous surgery. I feel this recovery is going better and I have a lot of strength in my leg and hip compared to my previous surgery. Cross my fingers that this works. My surgeon also said that he doesn’t know if a hip replacement will work on me. 😦 But he has done hip replacements on young patients when all else failed.
My hip capsule needed to be tightened with cadaver tissue