FAI Hip Impingement (Femoro-acetabular Impingement)

FAI Hip Impingement Awareness facts - It is estimated that approximately 15% of the young, adult population have hip impingement, so who do you know that might have it?
Hip impingement causes painful labral tears within the hip socket.
Hip FAI symptoms are misleading to the average medical professional, as FAI hip impingement pain frequently presents as low back pain and interesting only 10% of back pain is ever clinically diagnosed and cured... Which begs the question what percentage is actually caused by hip FAI or hip impingement, as its otherwise known.
The more active you are, the more likely you are to trigger hip impingement symptoms, so busy mums and gym bunnies beware... but at least you're in good company as many premiere league football players have also suffered FAI hip pain.
Hip impingement is diagnosed through x-ray and labral tears are diagnosed through MRI arthograms - but both need to be read by hip consultants specifically trained in FAI hip impingement.
There are 60,000 hip replacements every year in the UK and it now appears that FAI hip impingement, over the years, could be the leading cause of hip osteoarthritis. A silent epidemic.
Hip arthroscopy can reduce the hip impingement and reattach the torn labrum to the hip socket. This surgery can eliminate the pain and disability caused by FAI hip impingement and divert the need for hip replacement in later life.


Also please feel welcome to join in our help and advice forum for support. We have 3 advising FAI expert hip surgeons, 3 PT/physios and a sports medicine doctor as well as the largest international FAI hip impingement forum on the net:

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery week 26? Mind the gap

hip arthroscopy pah! Me and my big mouth... massive flare today and I think I know why ..its because of Izzy's Gap fleece all in one and my desire to buy it in the sales, combined with Gap moving childrens' wear onto the 2nd floor, from the basement, where I obviously unwittingly went, if you combine that with my lift phobia (thank god I don't live in New York) you're pretty much in the picture! I walked?? up 3 flights of stairs to get my daughter a much desired fleece snowsuit! Not just normal stairs, this is a big old Georgian building with super high ceilings and endless stairs.

The only red flag, other than struggling for air and swearing under my breath was that once I got there and literally reached out to the snowsuit rail my 'good' leg collapsed and the shop assistant looked horrified. "Cramp?" I yelped before adding "have you got these in size 12 to 18 months??" but retrospectively once up off the floor, I might've pondered my leg collapsing to be a bad sign!!
After that I couldn't bend my leg, my left/good leg without cramp-like pain and weakness so ironically I had to hyperventilate my way down to the ground floor in a lift (elevator US folk)!
Managed to shop fine on one level for a further hour and felt fine last night, good even.

BUT this morning, oh dear, pain in my right hip, quite severe and also I think muscle pain and weakness in my left/good side. I'm hoping my left isn't replicating my right hips ability to give way, as it once did pre op. My right hip just really hurts inthe same pain patterns as pre op.. Bit of a shock almost 6 months out of hip arthroscopy surgery for FAI to be this affected by something I would've done in my sleep, pre hip problems. More acceptable on the side awaiting surgery. But severe pain after 6 months WTF?!

So Now 2 nights before a new decade my hubby has me under 'strict' instructions to DO NOTHING as I now have a miserable cold, some kind of 'hip stress induced anxiety disorder' and 'both' hips in meltdown. I can't sit and I'm crawling up my own stairs. Me and stairs simply do not get on! That's as black and white example as you can get!
I really wanted to ring up Gap today and complain and ask how many stairs there were from basement to second floor, but fear they'll think, no confirm, that I'm nuts if I do so, but let me say there were loads.

Err, its Christmas time I need to say something positive.... hmmm On the upside Izzy looks fab in her pink fleece snowsuit!

Sunday, 27 December 2009

hip arthroscopy rehab week 26? coming to terms

All quite unremarkable so far! Sat though Xmas dinner, granted on a cushion, but was fine and that's unusual, normally I'm itching to stand. Also got to play a board game with my son, I could sit long enough weeeeeee! fantastic!
Not been able to do much simply because I have a cold, virus thing and feel washed out.

I've not been in the pool for OMG '4' whole days, but by way of making up I've been saying lots of hail marys, no, I mean I've been doing exercises, 'land' exercises and stretches. All on piriformis, psoas and hamstrings, If I keep these muscles loose (or at least not as strung up as a violin) seems I don't go too far wrong.
Muscle aches still dog operated side though less and less so and unoperated side flares, but feels manageable.
In fairness the operated side has only been grumbling since March 08 v's the operated sides shouting at me since Sept 03, so hey, I'm hard, I'd be lost without some pain!!
Given my body's decision (catching a cold) to join my mind and self indulge in a bit of self pity for a couple of weeks I think delaying the op probably was a good decision in the long run and I'm really looking forward to quality time with my baby!

ps one tip 'wii boxing' - FANTASTIC - I just kept knocking them out in the first round - amazing stress relief and all I had to do was keep picturing my GP who for 6 years insisted it couldn't be a hip problem causing the pain!

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Merry Christmas hippys


Have a happy, hippy Christmas and less of the hoppy stuff for the New Year! ..And thanks to anybody bored enough to read the trials and tribulations of this unfortunate road of recovery, if its eased or educated your mind, then job done! Have a good one! PS our tree on the balcony out of Izzy's reach!
Best wishes to you all,
Louisa x

Saturday, 19 December 2009

hip arthroscopy FAI surgery recovery week 24? heels on the road to happiness

Well my outlook has substantially improved in recent days and I am ashamed to admit is is thru something as utterly trivial as been able to wear heels for a couple of hours each day.. so as I now have little social life, due to limiting hips of recent years, my only way of showing off was to take Oscar to school whilst wearing Jeans and heeled boots, hurrah!! Obviously absolutely nobody noticed! I had to literally stop myself from approaching strangers and saying 'Wuhoo get me, don't I look hot!" They're only like 2 inch high wedge heels, not Ditta Vontease killer heels or anything!

Stressed, well yes I still am, its not going to go that fast, but I'm just getting on with it! Its been a hard hip year and there's more surgery ahead, but I've decided if I need a few more months till surgery, then I need a few more months. Its a natural cause /effect reaction so I'm sure it will pass in time.
Hey one upside of all the hip surgery induced stress is that I've lost 4lbs! Wuhoo - wearing heels 'and' getting skinny, does life get much better than this??!!
Well yes I suppose it could.. my Christmas wish for myself and for all of us hip suffering pioneers is less bloody pain and more accurate diagnosing and more successful, faster recoveries!! ..and a bit of peace and goodwill to all mankind for good measure!

Monday, 14 December 2009

hip arthroscopy wk 23 hip surgery causes nervous breakdown

I think I might be ill, mentally, going all fruit loop, or something strange??!
I am suddenly soooo stressed! Its like my body kept hanging on in there thru this hellish year of my one year old baby been diagnosed and subsequently treated for hip dysplasia... followed by my SSSSIIIIXXX year, yes '6' year, crippling back pain turning out to be my hip too. That'll be the hip pain I kept complaining about then, the one ALL the specialists said was referred back pain, on the basis I was too young to have hip pain!! READ UP DOCTORS, READ UP!
Then my surgery, uuggh shudder ..and THEN "THE RECOVERY" and 5 months down the line, I should have a second surgery on my other crappy hip and yet I hesitate with this half cooked hip - not quite the recovery I was hoping for!
Now suddenly I am tearful, exhausted like never before, snappy and with a whole host of neurotic symptoms, breathless, panicky, tachycardia and overwhelmed.. and mainly I just want to sleep.
The only other time I can remember feeling even a little bit this way was like 12 years ago, working as a reporter for BBC Radio, as of all things, their religious correspondent! Trust me I was pants, because I know nothing about religion (I kind of believe in God, but noone goes to church I haven't a clue!) so I was utterly err clueless, but broke so took the work! ..I was also working evenings too as a driver in a Chinese takeaway for a stress head chief, because yes you got it, I was broke!
I lived on coffee and cokeacola. Anyway, I don't know if it was the stress, the coffee or the coke, but I ended up hospitalized with palpitations! Funny thing was I was relieved as it gave me a great excuse to get out of my BBC contract! The thing is this time I feel the same, but can't resign from my hips, so I'm not sure where that leaves me...
So does the stress just dissipate? Or will I go nuts like Micheal Douglas in Falling down and start shooting random people?? What does a nervous breakdown look like? Anyone else gone nuts recovering from hip surgery, or am I the weak link here??!

Sunday, 13 December 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 23 maintainance exercises

Just adding some exercises for anyone who could do with some pointers for hip arthroscopy maintenance post op. These have just been given to me by a successful hip arthroscopy patient, she was told to keep doing them daily. I'm going to start adding these as from tomorrow as I currently only do water exercises.

"Hip abductions - that is lying on you side doing leg lifts,
Side steps with a somewhat tight band around the ankles, Step downs, that is where you are on the last step and step down with your good side (if you have one :) but don't let your foot touch the floor but let it get really close, repeat - this is a hard one for me. I found an old step ... See More from step aerobics that is a bit shorter and that works better. The band exercise can be done in the water, just rinse with clear water when done and lay out to dry.
All of these exercises should be done on both sides. Oh yes, a few more - Clamshells, laying on your side, knees bent, ankles together, keep ankles together and lift the upper knee -15-30x each. Leg presses - at the gym keep the weight low and do both legs at first then single leg presses, make sure you are not straining too much. Best wishes to you my friend. I better go and do mine now, I have been bad lately, always have an excuse..."

Thank you to the lovely Stephanie for these.

Friday, 11 December 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery wk 23 giving up

Am canceling my hip arthroscopy to treat my second hip with FAI pincer, due Jan 29th... bizarre for me this, but I just can't find the physical and mental energy to go for it.. If I was certain of this recovery I think that would be my impetus, but thus far, recovery on the right hip is somewhat half hearted. I saw Prof Schilders on Wednesday, my "hoop" score had improved to 69 from 49 on the 'how much pain/how crap is your life' score, which is about average improvement. The problem is that I had such a low score to start with, as in 49, where most people start at 69 and go up to 89... so even statistically my hip's crap.
I explained I had somewhat lost my mojo and what was his take on postponing, would it further risk deterioration of the hip that needs the op?
His answer was if you leave it for a few yrs, that would likely be the case, but one year should be OK; and for me to consider that having the op in Jan as arranged, had its own risks, on my previously operated him. The pressure on the already operated hip to protect the newly operated hip could send that 1st recovery backwards, wonder if anyones ever gone into negative point scoring in the hoop score - 29!! Something I was aware of, but trying to ignore, as I wanted it all done and dusted!

I am annoyed with myself for chickening out, but just feel I have no reserves.. this recovery has been and is really disappointingly slow and the idea of 6 weeks no driving, whilst living in the middle of nowhere, isn't appealing, 6 -8 wks crutches and four months of not being able to pick up my one yr old Izzy - I just can't face it all again, not yet and I'm not gonna get Izzy's baby hood back, I feel robbed as it is!

This week by chance I'm getting more pain from the operated side, so I can't even rationalize with myself that I should push ahead, what for??

On the upside he re-measured my ROM with big improvements apparently, though oddly on both hips WTF?? And yay.. I finally got to see some new x-rays and comfortingly saw 'less bone', Wuhoo! ..If only my muscles and tendons, or whatever causes ongoing pain, would catch up! Still lucky me, my hips improved 20 points on the hoop score!

I'm going to shut up for fear of wingeing forever today!

Sunday, 6 December 2009

hip arthroscopy week 22 nervous meltdown

Well, went on a mad christmas lunch that turned into a 10 hr champagne drinking event, that took me to several bars... I genuinely thought I had little chance of making it thru lunch as there were 3 to 4 courses. Only been able to sit thru 2 courses max for yrs. Anyhow, I survived and for much longer (I think down to alcohol) but the craziness lured me in in the absence of hardly any social life in over a yr, due to limitations!
I am suffering now. Operated hip started grumbling and got louder a day later and pre op hip very very tight.
The bad news is literally since booking my last op I've had 3 panic attacks, 11 migraines and 2 days of palpitations - you'd think it'd get easier, it doesn't!

Sunday, 29 November 2009

hip arthroscopy recover wk 21 - yes its actually starting to happen, a recovery wuhoo

Yesterday was my first day of pain in a 7 day stretch of no pain, wuhoo, get that!!!!
There is definitely some improvement, dunno how or why, I think water exercises and time!
I absolutely have to recommend a great book I read 2 weeks ago on hip rehab, prehab and prevention called HEAL YOUR HIPS from Amazon by Robert Klapper (hip surgeon Sinai cedars) and Lynda Huey (physio to Paula Abdul, Cybil Shepard, Barbara Streisand and other hip patients, non of whom limp so that's a good sign!!)
It concentrates on water exercise to get your hip right. Bizarrely instinctively I was doing most of the exercises anyway, but for me it was a great book because it told me how to do the exercises properly, for maximum benefit. For anyone getting into the water alone, wanting to see big improvements this book is your best friend... I couldn't wait to read it each night! God, I really have become a hip bore haven't I?!

I have noticed my hip clunks more, like a normal (to me!) joint, I think it is because the inflammation has reduced allowing the joint some movement and basically the pain has, not gone, but significantly decrease, to uncomfortable... yippee, just a shame simultaneously my other hip's grumbling is getting louder!!! I am though still living a partially restricted life, with regards to activity and sitting, though my tolerance IS increasing.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Sunday, 22 November 2009

hip arthroscopy FAI recovery week 20

Have a sneaky feeling things MAYBE improving, but almost don't want to say it out loud in case I jinx the mear thought!
I am working out a little less, half hour every odd day, rather than an hour a day.. (something someone said - thanks Sam!) I think that's working better, I was doing water exercises fanatically, but frankly it was just an indication of my desperation to get fixed!
I've noticed another minuit thing, I no longer waddle when I first get up, another small sign right?? Right?
The improvements are tiny, but in the right direction, just tiny!
OOh also starting to walk up the stairs consecutively, rather than one at a time like my 4 yr old.

SO at week 20, no medication other than the odd heat patch. Constant awareness of hip discomfort, but tipping over into full on pain occurring a little less, though I am still restricting all sitting, lifting, standing activities to maintain that position.
I am walking upstairs bit better, not waddling, walking sideways is possible and walking in general is better! I almost feel a ticker tape parade coming!! ... is that a fanfare?

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

pavlik harness and CHD Congenital hip dysplasia - baby



Baby hip dysplasia and the pavlik harness is something I've been meaning to cover. Should you have a hip problem, like myself, it is worth getting your babies double checked. They say first born girls and breech are most likely to develop this, my daughter was neither, she was second born and cephalic presenting. My personal experience with my daughter Isabella is below and also I have set up a facebook support group forum at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/HipDysplasiaInBabies/ which is a great place to meet other parents in the same boat.
My daughter, now one, slipped through the hospital first day check, health visitor's first week check and doctor's 6 week check. They spread the legs backward to see if the hips click and dislocate. The trouble is, that does not cover all the bases..My daughter, Izzy, her hips never actually dislocated out of the socket.

By 4 and a half months my hubby and myself grew increasingly concerned at Izzy's leg length discrepancy, we had passed it off as that new born twisted, scrunched up look, they often have as newborns and so had the professionals. I was reassured several times over. Until one day the LLD Leg length discrepancy struck me as dramatically obvious. I googled it (thank God for google!!) and she ticked a lot of the boxes and thought I'm almost sure this is her problem. Then took her back again to my GP.
He insisted 1cm LLD was normal ..I pointed out 1 cm on an adult maybe, but on a baby 56cms long, I wasn't so sure he was right that that was normal. At this time I had no idea I had a hip problem too, just ongoing pain from 'something' and said I wasn't prepared for them to also miss something on my daughter and wouldn't leave without a scan for her!

I got the scan for Izzy 2 weeks later and she did have hip dysplasia. Her acatabulum was 10 degrees away from normal and was too shallow. For some reason and they said congenital, her left hip hadn't fully developed. They asked who had a hip problem within my immediate family, I said no-one that I knew of, the irony! (within a month I found out my mystery pain of 6 years was my hip too)

She was immediately put into a pavlik harness.

The pavlik harness was something I'd worried about a great deal when reading up on dysplasia, but its actually very straight forward to use. It's light, its easy to wash and its best for you if you make permanant ink marks where the straps are set so you can KNOW where to fasten it if you take it off and want to put it back on and you'll become aware when they're growing too as the markers need to move. It can cause babies to have a little more wind that usual, but certainly in our case nothing significant.
The biggest nightmare was her wardrobe. She couldn't wear trousers, babygrows (unless super large) or any dress that wasn't designed to flare out as they would simply ride up to tee shirt height! So she wore party dresses the whole time because they all kicked out at the chest like little princess dresses!!
The other difficulty was seating her. Our pram, the bugaboo was fine and I believe the quinny zap is wide and good with a harness also, probably the vest in my experience because of its wide seat shape. The stoke highchair also fine. Maxi cosi rear facing car seat was ok, with a little cushion under her bottom to boost her and allow her hips to spread out. I also understand there is a special britax seat designed for this should your child be older, or in a pot version. There are products, but it can get expensive and it seems unnecessary for hopefully such a temporary length of time.

So at a LATE four and a half months (best results, if applied before 6 weeks) she began wearing her pavlik harness. Initially 24 hours everyday for 6 weeks. At the end of six weeks she only moved 1 degree and they said surgery would be the next step should she not progress and to brace ourselves as she was now six months and very few babies made progress after 6 months. However we went along with it, for another 6 weeks of wearing the pavlik harness night and day. She was allowed an hour of per day, but we couldn't see the point, other than for bathing, as it upset her more to put it back on. Once on, she barely noticed the pavlik harness, although in the final weeks seemed to kick against it. In the last month she suddenly had a growth spurt and this I am 100% sure is what caused the harness to suddenly work as at our next assessment she progressed the full 10 degrees! We were stunned! Thank you thank you thank you is all we could think.

She worn the pavlik harness until seven and a half months old. It delayed her sitting at six months, but within literally 2 weeks of the pavlik harness coming off, she could sit unaided AND CRAWL!! The harness actually really strengthened her legs! Now she is walking and ahead of a lot of her peers, which is a real shock! Do not fear it will hold your child back. Having said that as you can see just after the harness was removed she did sit in THE MOST unladylike fashion!!
We do still however have a couple of concerns, in that she favours her good leg and there is still a twist to her, but we are assured all is well and that as she becomes more mobile, using all those muscles, that these problems will disappear.

All in all its not the most pleasant thing to put your baby through, but honestly it'll probably irritate you more than them, Your biggest problems will be highchairs and clothes (but girls, its a great excuse to buy all those frufru dresses and they go for a song, virtually unworn other than for the odd occasion, on ebay!)

She has just had her one year assessment and all is looking well ...so most importantly we might just have saved her from a lifetime of pain and operations.
Ironically it prompted those around me to consider my hip as the source of my 6 year unexplained pain, so 'she' probably also saved me from a lifetime of pain too!

Anyone readying this retrospectively contact me directly if you need any help/advice re how to cope with the pavlik harness etc, I'm at louisa.w@virgin.net

ps ask for 2 pavlik harness from the hospital, they won't automatically give you two and should you have a spill or nappy disaster it makes life easier!

I have just set up a facebook support group, in the groups section of facebook called 'hip dysplasia in babies' (clicky hips or CHD, DDH) I have put on LOTS of links to advice pages, to make it easier for others to search for advice, equipment, help. https://www.facebook.com/groups/HipDysplasiaInBabies/
Also as more people find this facebk support group, we can help each other.

Best of luck!

Sunday, 15 November 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery week 19

I wonder when the post hip arthroscopy dateline will be described in months as opposed to weeks?? Its like when you have a baby, you describe them as say 14 weeks old, but at some point you flick over to months - where is that line? (sorry only Mum's will understand that!) Yes, here's my 100092 week old daughter, I mean 18 year old!
Anyhow v happy as my daughter's Doc rang Sat morning after her one year, or 52 week! follow up x-ray for hip dysplasia and was happy to tell us he is pleased with her hip reduction and that all is well, although they will continue to monitor her. She started walking yesterday, she does though appear to have a limp, but it is v v early days and they're saying it could just be a hangover from the hip dysplasia.. I'm hoping so. Babies often walk funny when learning, right?

So, me, I'm up and down, managed to stay off the meds so far, so that's something. Discovered I could walk sideways yesterday, not something I do often, but I know I couldn't pre op as I remember standing in a canteen queue and really struggling to do just that (a month pre diagnosis) and feeling really freaked out, thinking what the hell is wrong with me??! SO, great I can do that. Now I too can walk with crabs or queue up for crappy canteen food, wuhoo I'm at one again!! Sorry do I sound ungrateful!

Pain coming and going, but in stereo! Yesterday I had a terrible day with my 'good' hip and my bad, operated hip was fine. Today that good hip is ok, but my bad hip grumbling a little, so far, only morning! I wonder if I'm always leaning from one to the other as they alternately flare up? Can inflammation really come and go like that?! I really need this second one fixing before it gets into the state my right hip has.
So its still limiting life a lot, just trying to manage my expectations and maintain a feeling of enjoying my life regardless and to be honest that can be a struggle some days.. wait and see really isn't it...and I am NOT blessed with patience!

Anyhow gonna crack on with doing the baby blog I've been promising myself since before getting sidetracked with hips... May as well put those journalist qualifications to some use!?! Thinking of getting a talk type application for my mac, then I can lay around like cleopatra on a chaise dictating to my blogs and not concern myself with the boring anxieties of how long I can sit/how fast can I type!
Heal well fellow hipsters XX

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

hip arthroscopy non recovery 18 wks

Changing the name of this blog to 'MY FAI HIP WINGE' as of the previous blog entry. I know its probably madness but I came of my 2 x meloxicam 3 days ago. Had to know where I was at, as I have been masking pain ever since it re-emerged when I came of my crutches. Not too surprisingly I'm not in a good place.

Its not good and I may have to go back on the meds. I am gutted to see everyone else doing so well, I don't mean that in a mean way, I just can't see why not me too? What's wrong with me? I started out so positive and this blog was so positive and I just if I'm honest believed that the hip arthroscopy failures either had duff surgeons, or didn't follow there PT exercises, or had negative attitudes, or something. But I've done it all, good surgeon, religious about physio therapy and added daily hydro and had a positive outlook.

Even with the kids I was hands off until last week and couldn't manage then, so now they're in school and nursery so I don't get to look after them! ..and I still can't work as I can't sit. Apologies for temp blip of feeling sorry for myself, just I keep watching my body clock and increasing trying to accept that I may not have my third child because of my stupid hips, seen as I can't even pick up the ones I have. If I were a wild dog I think I would just knaw off my leg from the hip joint and have done with it!


In fact I'm going to stop writing I'm making myself miserable! Going to go sharpen my teeth to see whether knawing off my leg is actually an option!

Sunday, 8 November 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 17 wks

Rubbish mood and feeling sorry for myself. Spent a lovely afternoon with friends, but gutted they had to arrange a standing dinner party because I am struggling to sit still, good ole Bangers and mash though... Yum!!! They are half hour away in car travel time, that is an hour traveling both ways, leaving me approx 30 mins remaining sitting time for random sitting and no chance for 2 hour sit down meal with wine ontop, so a standing meal... so grateful, but so embarrassed as my disability stands out and as an active person all my life, I find it hard to be singled out as partially disabled in any way.

This week Mon and Tuesday good and I had Izzy (one yr old 25lb baby) to look after. Wed morning was also ok, but then a lift up to the highchair too many and I was polaxed! So did some serious nursery help rejigging to survive. Struggled to survive Thurs and Frid, recovered Saturday just in time to ruin it by driving into Leeds city for a meal, half hour drive there and back, 2 hrs lunch = PAIN! Followed by Sunday lunch arrangements = MORE PAIN! The audacity to think that I should be able to enjoy my life!!!!!!!!

As from this week, 17 weeks post op, the ONLY way I can even look after my daughter is if she goes to nursery, then my hubby leaves work at lunchtime and collects her and puts her straight to bed for a nap. She wakes at about 3pm, so then most of the day I haven't had to pick her up! I have also arranged for Oscar, my 4 yr old, to be collected from school, as with Izzy in tow and in a town house and a drive away, I can't carry Izzy around to collect my son. SO within all these super organized hurdles I can look after my kids, kind of! To be honest I'm feeling quite sad. Still lifting (muscle stuff) and sitting (FAI stuff) is ruining my life.
Feeling quite down to be honest.

Feel SOOOOOOOOOOO inadequate as a mother!
Is anyone else like this or just me, I manage until I try participate in life!
17 weeks and I still can't carry around my 25lbs daughter, or really do stairs with or without her, EVEN WITH A NOW BEYONCE MUSCLEY ARSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Arrggh!
BETTER? I DON'T THINK SO!

Sunday, 1 November 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery hard work beginning to be rewarded

Been pretty good, though even at 16 weeks I am now rehabbing harder than ever, doing a hour in the pool 5 to 6 days a week. I simply walk forwards, backward and sideways. Then do some specific exercises to improve glutes, quads, ab and adductors strength and hammy stretches... and towards the end of the hour I swim, mainly flutter kick and a bit of breaststroke.
At the end of the hour I spend 10 minutes in the jacuzzi heating and loosening up my muscles and aiming the water jets to massage my hip arthroscopy incision sites. But I have to say I am loving it!.
I'm nervous about this week as I will start properly looking after Izzy, my imobile as yet 25lb one year old! I'm not confident of my ability as carrying her on stairs is REALLY hard and I live in a townhouse, but my help has had enough, in fairness its been four months..so I'm just hoping its not too much for my hip. I'd stick her in nursery full time but fear swine flu more! She'll be doing nursery just 3 afternoons a week. In truth I have no idea what the reality will be, I will not know what if anything I am able to do until the end of this week..
I do think this though, without kids and with a little lifting avoidance, I think I would be on the mend..I DO feel improvement. On down days I crash in mood, but I think I am now seeing more good days than bad.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 15 wks 5 days.

Well astrologically speaking the outlook for my hip is rather good. Saturn apparently leaves virgo (thats me), ..supposedly, about 2 yrs ago he arrived for a long stay bringing, stress, worse hips, increased pain and rubbish doctors into my life and he leaves my sign tomorrow WUHOO! I almost want to stay up tonight and watch him leave!!!

And Jupiter, the planet of bountiful good hips, femurs, labrums, pain relief and brilliant doctors, is popping into my sign, thats virgo in case you missed it the first time, for a brief period.
So don't say I don't look on the bright side, or find ways of staying positive..

Yours,
Mrs Clutching at straws!!

Sunday, 25 October 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 15wks, 2 days.. More answers, so more questions!!

My hip arthroscopy certainly has its ups and downs, but in general I am not where I hoped I would be.
However this week some pennies have dropped and I am starting to see my problem more clearly.

I notice when in the pool, when I raise my right, operated leg to the rear, to do glute exercises, this makes my left (pre op) hip, click. Because of the nature of the pelvis been as one unit. I believe this tilts my pelvis backwards with the leg, into extreme lordosis, causing my acetabulum to hit my femur on my left, static hip. Though a different action, it recreates the contact made if I simply flex up that static leg to 90 degrees in front of me. The same bone collision is happening.

Also I have made an effort to sit properly, to avoid knackering my hamstrings at my sit bone junction. In doing so, I cause pelvis to tilt forward (increasing lordosis to normal extent), which again causes my acetabulum to crash into my femur on my left pre op side - OUCH. If I sit incorrectly, by flattening my back, it stops the bones crashing but then it really hurts my hammys and sit bones. I think, no I'm almost sure, avoiding correct posture sitting, to avoid the bone collision, has caused the damage to my hamstrings. I have unwittingly been doing it for years!

However as an experiment I have been sitting correctly for a week, which increased my sitting tolerance and reduced sit bone pain considerably, but as my theory expected now I have severe pain in my pre op hip from the bones colliding and probably catching and inflamming the labrum!!

My concern is the constant grumbling of my right hip, my post op hip and I wonder if there is enough clearance betweeen the bones now after my hip scope?
Which brought me back around to retroverted acetabulum, which causes pincer FAI. I know I have retroverted acetabulum, it was kind of loosely mentioned at a stage when I hadn't a clue what was what. I confirmed I had it on my AP X-ray and it showed inside the pelvis walls the 2 tale tale signs of the jutting in triangle protrusions into the should be empty space and the figure 8 sign over hip.
It all leaves me with a couple of questions which I need to ask my surgeon, but would also welcome any anecdotal experience..
Can a retroverted acetabulum be corrected by hip arthroscopy only? Can all cases be fixed that way? When is an open procedure necessary? How do I know if I need open surgery?

Its reassuring because it all makes sense and I can even create and remove pain by altering my posture temporarily. But I'm foxed by my rubbish recovery on my right hip and thats what is making me question retrovesion of hips causing FAI as i believe it is traditionally treated by repositioning the acetabulam through open surgery as opposed to rim trimming acetabulum through hip scope. So I question if enough has been done?

For anyone suffering persistant bum pain sitting, try sitting with your back more arched, which has your sit less on your tail bone and more on the flats of you femur, does that takeway bum pain and create groin pain? then switch back does that ease off the groin pain and bring on the bum pain? Experiment...its quite interesting!

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery - wuhoo I can RUN!

Today I discovered I can run! I know I can run in water, but it turns out I can run for real, on land! I ran because I was in a toy shop passing the day when I asked the time and then realized I had 10 minutes to collect my son, from school which was 20 minutes from the shop!!
I wouldn't have been quite so panicked, but he only started school last month and yesterday I locked myself in the house/lost door & car keys so at the last minute I had to desperately ring round and find someone to collect my poor son! I figured on 2 consecutive days, been quite that crap would be unimpressive and given I locked myself in again about two weeks ago and they had to hold him until I could escape and drive to school, I wasn't taking any chances and ran, YES RAN (with 4 shopping bags, light ones!) for a few minutes to my car and then did the obvious and rang the school on my mobile and told them I'd been in a car crash, like you do! Didn't realize how bad that sounded until I heard the head mistress gasp and I added a small crash? ..and that I'd be late. Actually recounting that is making me laugh, but at the time I was hysterical and genuinely concerned they'd report me to social services for neglect or something!

Anyhow so add running to the list of new abilities and even in the teary sprint I was present enough to notice I thought my stride was rather even!!! Doing 1 hr, 5 days a week in the pool walking/running and doing specific exercises. It never brings on the pain, mostly feels good after and I am feeling muscles grow, specifically my atrophied bum/glutes! So I'm aiming now for a hot Beyonce big ass!

Sunday, 18 October 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 14 wks 2 days

Top tips post hip arthroscopy - its unwise the try race your 4 year old on a scooter! Top tip 2, don't try catch falling autumn leaves, you won't be as good as you were and it really can jar your hips darting sideways and back and forth..still, I caught 4 leaves and each one is good luck! I caught one and quickly made a really trivial wish, then thought how silly, when I 'should've' given it to my son.. so had to catch a second for Oscar, THEN I remembered something really important I wanted to wish for and had to catch a 3rd for a serious wish for myself, then thought God that's really selfish, so had to catch a forth to make a wish for my children!!!! ...by which time I was half crippled and my four year old boy, 20 minutes after the initial excitement of catching leaves was pleading 'Please Mummy can we go in now, I'm BOOORRRED!'

Anyway won't stay, else I'll moan and doubt everything, but its been a dodgy few days and when I tried to come off pain killers, for my stomach, I realized I was in pain and also still had groin pain, it had just been masked by anti inflammatories, so I was REALLY disappointed!

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 13 wks 4 days

So on the 5th day I have pain, BUT I just had 4 consecutive pain free-ish days! Even though v active. Yesterday went a bit mad, cleaning for house viewing, shopping, laundry, swim stuff and then a big dash to find Oscar a halloween outfit for his first primary school pumpkin party CCCUUUTEE!! 4 shops and a sore bum (mine!) later we found the much desired skeleton suit! So today I felt tender and last night I couldn't sleep on my back without really bad bum pain...LUCKY I CAN NOW SLEEP ON MY FRONT THEN, TA DARR!
Had a day of forgetting meds and yesterday I decided the smartest solution might be to halve them to just 7.5mg meloxicam per day.

Its going to be a more intense ten days from tomorrow as my hubby goes to Hong Kong and China on business leaving me running after the kids with my mum, so like I said 'I'll' be running after the kids! Expect stressed, painful posts!
Good hip playing up a bit and sitting pain all around. But with hope I'm chipper again, least the pain is lightening, would LOVE to hear from other post hippy's to hear your experiences so far?

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Hip Arthroscopy recovery 13wks, 1 day pain relief

Wuhoo 2 days no significant pain, could this be a turn around, touch wood salute at magpies and all manner of superstitious reassurance behaviour!!!
Been working like a demon at the pool, an hour a day of walking in chest deep water, ham, glute, adductor, quad and hip flexor exercises and a bit of breast stroke and flutter kick leg swimming... it is working wonders.. or the steroid is.. wish I knew which it is, but oh the joy of not living with mind distracting dull ache day and night!
Maybe this hip arthroscopic malarky, maybe it can work???
Must not get too excited as I KNOW the pain will keep revisiting, but right now I'll be grateful for one day pain, two days no pain and so on and hopefully ever improving!

Thursday, 8 October 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery swim swim swim

I am still in pain post hip arthroscopy. The hip arthroscopy to repair a detached labrum and FAI pincer was 13 wks ago tomorrow.
I no longer limp or think too much about walking. BUT I am still in pain, feels like the same pain. I have lost the groin pinching part mostly. I still have pain in my buttocks that aches and will not allow me to sit and participate in life. I have been attributing that pain soley to hamstring tendonitis/bursitis at the joint of the sit bone, not sure which it is supposed to be?! BUT yesterday tieing my shoe laces on my good leg/hip I virtually bent double and boy did I feel a pinch in my groin, that pain built all day and wrapped around into my buttock area and where hamstrings meet sit bones, totally mimicking the pain on my bad side, so I'm really not sure now what I think. I'm pretty sure I either pinched the labrum or bone hit bone, I'm not sure but it made me yelp.
But then IF my pain therefore is capsular, that means either the hip arthroscopy performed by Proff Schilders failed or the arthritis is worse than assessed at grade 2, or when I jarred my leg at week 2 I did more damage than estimated... ???

One thing is the pain I caused yesterday has eased off and it also made me realize the steroid in that hip, prior to my hols has worked, so much I have all but forgotten that good hip causes pain!

Anyhow I'm still waiting for Hammy steroids to take effect, I estimate one to 2 more weeks.
I am going water walking 4 days a week now for almost an hour at a time. I walk in all directions, jogg (wuhoo the freedom, I love it!) do glute, quad, adductor, hammy and glute exercises and then swim a mix of breaststroke and flutter kick. I love it because I switch off and think of it as me time at get on with it and before I know it its jacuzzi time! To relax off the muscles of course!
My pain is significant and not controlled by my anti inflammatories, better controlled by a heat patch applied to just above my hip and wrapping around onto glute muscle. No idea why and why should I when the experts don't know either! The pain is every alternate day and I have no idea of a pattern...but for this its VERY VERY similar to pre - op, now how is that?

Sunday, 4 October 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery ha ha! 12 wks 2 days miserable blog!

I can walk better and further without pain or limp and I can sleep on my stomach. I've been unable to walk far without pain or limping for just over a yr of the 6 yrs pain. I've been unable to sleep on my front for 6 years. The groin pain has pretty much gone..think I had that part of the pain for at least 3+ yrs, probably longer, but that was the first time I can be sure, as I wrote that pain down in some consultant question notes in 2006.

I get night pain if I do too much of 'anything'! AND worst of all I can not shake of the sitting pain that has dogged me for 6 years. It is I'm sure from where my hammys meet my sit bone, I've gone on about that for years and the pain so pronounced I can pin point it quite literally.
Trouble is its been 6 yrs and THAT is bad news! I'm still awaiting the steroid effect but its only a week and a half since the injections. My physio has started ultrasound therapy and trigger point massage also. I stretch daily, the 2 stretches I do feel good.
I picked up my daughter again today and wacked myself out. I'm so upset because my Mother is the one helping with childcare and she is getting increasingly impatient with this stupid,slow recovery and my consequential need for childcare...
Even worse I am gutted I can't look after Isabella and also very sad I will not be able to have a third child, as twice over when my babies hit over 20+lbs (about 1 year) I lose the ability to pick them up!
Other than aqua exercises and hammy stretches I have all bit given up with the exercises as they're MAKING NO DIFFERENCE! I should know I've done them religiously for 10 of 12 weeks!

I don't exactly know how I hurt my hamstrings, but I'm advised most likely to do with bad hip mobility, though I think I got the hammy pain before, during and after my hip pain arriving.

I LONG to pick up my daughter and go out and have fun with her and I know with anything short of a miracle, it really isn't going to happen! It just isn't, I know this because time is ticking and the same happened with my little boy!
I long to socialize again, meals, cinema, pub ...life??? Work? This is just shit as whilst I THINK I know the hammys cause the sitting pain, theres little I can do, its so chronic!

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Advise please??? Canada FAI experts?

Someone has approached me for advice. They NEED a top FAI specialist, has anyone got a name for FAI/Labral tear hip specialist in Calgary or close, Canada. I'm pretty sure have heard of one there in the past but can't remember?

PS Been suffering all night with MUCH discomfort, I'm almost sure from my hamstring though and it feels swollen. Good to ID the pain though!

Be very grateful for any Canada recommendations or Canada people connections.

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 11wks 5 days reflections 2009 mum and daughter

Almost sick with excitement today as for the 1st time in 2 months I am looking after Izzy 'by myself'.. Only for the morning, then nursery. I'm hoping to gradually phase in looking after her without pushing myself and so hindering my slow hip arthroscopy recovery. I have missed her desperately and am gutted every time she holds her hands in the air to be picked up by others, because she never holds her hands up to me!
Its good that babies have such a strong survival instinct, knowing who will look after them, but the amount of times I've been desperate to say I WANT to pick you up I just CAN'T! Shes 11 months almost to the day.

This whole year has flown, in a haze of hips..1st in February Izzy's hips, when I recognized she had hip dysplasia (God knows how, but thank God either way!)
I had no idea hip problems ran in the family, I myself wasn't diagnosed with a hip problem until 2 months after Izzy, later in April, after 6 years of misdiagnosed pain.

The doctor wouldn't believe she had a hip problem and just refer her for scan. Finally I said to him that I had had almost 6 yrs of undiagnosed pain and never want her to go through anything like that! That I needed to know 100% that her hips were fine and I could only get that with a scan, that I'd pay, anything, just authorize it!! Thank God he did because he was wrong and she did have hip dysplasia on her left hip. Discovered any later and she would've needed a series of operations. I was so mad! At 4 and a half months she was put into a pavlik harness for 6 wks.
Success of a pavlik harness much depends upon catching hip dysplasia early. She fell through all the baby screening for hip dysplasia and had I not caught it she would've been picked up for it when she crawled and dragged one leg, or later walking with a limp they said. I noticed it initially because she had a leg length discrepancy and would only put weight on the longer leg and she looked a bit twisted.

After 6 weeks she had only made a one degree change and her hip angle needed to deepen by 10 degrees. They said things weren't looking good. That she may well need surgery, that the pavlik harness mainly works if put on before the baby is 6 weeks old! She had been 4 and half months old. We were horrified with surgery on the horizon for our baby!

At around this time my new physio at Physio Cure Cookridge, Leeds started saying she thought my problem pain could be coming from my hip and that it needed further investigation. After MRA and Xray I was diagnosed with hip labral tear and severe FAI pincer abnormality. But I couldn't proceed with my op, until I found out whether Izzy needed her op. Your babies come first every time!

By some miracle in the next 5 weeks of her wearing the pavlik harness Izzy's hip actually improved by the whole 9 degrees! I put it down to the fortunate timing of another growth spurt and the chance that someone somewhere was looking after us! I cried in the scan when they said she was better. I had prepared myself to have to go through the horror of hip surgery with her. I'm not a religious person particularly but I found myself doing alsorts of deals throughout her treatment, culminating with I'll have to have a hip operation instead of Izzy, weird stuff... anyhow that's exactly what happened, no sooner had she recovered, as I was been prepped for theatre!

This year had been dominated by Izzy's, then my recovery from our hip deformities. Seemed to be always trust up in harnesses, or have the clatter of crutches in the background.
So it seems somewhat ponient?? today that this'll be kind of one of the first days when I look after her, with us both (Izzy more than me) healed!

I know I am not yet fixed, its a long road ahead and I am still taking anti inflammatories, but this is a positive step forward, after what has been an 'Annis Horriblis' or whatever it was in Latin that the Queen described as a horrible year!

One thing I think is important for others is that I was told they know of no connection between hip dysplasia and Hip impingement. 'But' when Izzy was diagnosed I was also told it was congenital and had come from someone.
I find it a huge coincidence that the two conditions are opposite sides of the same coin. Hip dysplasia is under development of the hip socket. FAI, or femoral acetabular impingement is over development of the hip socket, I find it hard to believe the 2 aren't connected, esp as the haven't worked out if FAI is congenital or developmental. All I'm saying is if you have babies, get them checked by ultrasound scan. Especially, though not exclusively, if they are female.

6 HRS LATER:
Was ok looking after Izzy, though she's very heavy. I can hold her just standing and I can hold her and walk a little. But holding her and doing the bloody stairs just twice gave me 3 hours of pain, mainly deep ache in butt, bit thigh pain, limp flirted with returning and then pain around the hamstrings insertion into sit bones. Unsure whether it hurt my hip or hammys, but am pretty sure (cockney accent) "it was the stairs wot did it Gov!" Has calmed down now, though be interesting to see if night pain returns?! And I know if I looked after Izzy regularly, like I'm supposed to be able to, I'd be totally buggered! There goes leaving my husband then!
I'm not sure these male Docs/consultants quite get how physical it is looking after a wiggling 24-26 pounder! Dumb bells don't thrash around, I reckon they're way easier to lift than a fighting, heffer 11 month old!

GOTTA MOVE!!! GOTTA MOVE GOTTA MOVE OUT OF THIS 3 STORY TOWNHOUSE!

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Hip Arthroscopy recovery 11 wks, 3 days

Hip Arthroscopy for FAI pincer and labral detachment is still going so slowly. The improvements are almost inperceivable. They are however improvements. I think that thanks to aqua exercises I am losing my limp. I spend half and hour every odd day, as of last week, literally walking forwards, backwards and sideways in a pool. Adding in some 90o leg raises and internal external rotations. I actually feel looser when I get out of the pool. No idea why it works but it works. I would have done it sooner, but was anxious to be pool side on slippy tiles fresh out of an op. Thou a tip, wear your crocs, they're great for stopping slips on wet tiles.

After only a week of this I am able to walk faster, further and much more even strided. In fact yesterday I went shopping for 4+ hours which is a first in a long time! I was delighted though paying for it today, with both my credit card and pain levels!
I also had/suffered those delightful hamstring bursa injections, immediately after with the local anesthetic my hubby said I was walking much faster.. So that could be a factor, although it hasn't yet stopped the sitting pain much. I think in the initial days it made my sitting tolerance a little better and I noticed that I had less pain the the bum sitting and more traveling down my legs that I could feel...but I'm waiting for the steroid to have chance to kick in before drawing too many conclusions.


I've done a bit of research since and a forum contributor said he got better post hip arthroscopy in all but sitting and was given from his doctor a supplement called Acetyl L Carnitine for sciatic pain and that after 1 week his sitting pain just stopped and that IF the pain is sciatic that this will work.
I looked up various research papers and found that like he says 'Acetyle L Carnitine', not just L carnitine, has huge success in relieving neuropathic pain and more so if combined with Alpha lipoic acid. The dosage for eliminating neuropathic pain is said to be 500mg ALC & 200 ALA x 3 x times a day. There don't appear to be many side effects, but that if you are to take any supplement, at any dose, do your research, better still ask a health professional.
I want to try this, but only after I've had a month to give the steroid a chance to do it's thing. I still think my piriformis might be trapping/pressing my sciatic nerve when I sit mainly.
The other route is that hamstring trigger points can masquerade as sciatic pain and as from this week will ask my physio Louise, if she could work on those triggers, she's very good at myofacial work, though its very uncomfortable at the times, there's often immediate relief.

So in short, I am feeling a much better range of movement in my hip and my related movements. I suspect over the 6 yrs clinical and ?? years sub-clinical my body has compensated and consequently caused muscle imbalance and strains on tendons and SOME of the pain is taking longer to subside.

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 11 million weeks. Injection into my arrrrrrrse.

I'll keep it brief! Mainly as I am still traumatized by today and have now had 2 glasses of wine and could be forgiven for saying anything after today, except no, a blog is like a puppy, not for Xmas, but for life! Here for everyone to see, FOREVER!

Went for Ultrasound, showed something, nothing horrific, just some crappy changes, though doubt that was the technical term he used!

The surgeon again cut to the chase and recommended the litmus?? test of anesthetic and steroid injection into Hamstrings where they meet the sit bone, hmmm nice! Wide eyed I agreed.

So half an hour later, knickers around my knees, in a doughnut of a CT scanner I find myself holing onto one of the lovely nurse's hands (a bit too tight) screaming FUUUCCKK! as I have a needle drilled into each butt cheek to reach each hamstring.. Those of you who follow know I am no wuss at these painful things and I have NEVER screamed or said more than shit! OMG! That was the most painful treatment!
I feared the needle first going in, all I could think was I wish I'd dieted because a) I am covered in towels, with nothing but my newly fat ass sticking out and 2, no B) (alcohol!!) That the needle had further to travel thru the layers of chocolate blubber!
First placement of needles fine, followed by further CT to ascertain correct position and I'm not allowed to move a millimetre! Once position confirmed THEN they go in further, to where the tendon meets the bone and I went from thinking, nah this is fine, I can handle this, to FUUUUCKK!!! (childbirth flashbacks!)
Anyway, its a positive thing and all done and dusted.
I think I then had a meeting with Surgeon (but it was a post adrenaline blur) and could neither speak, nor comprehend his words at all. I suppose its one way of shutting me up!

But I walked away thinking that in summary he'd said: He's seen FAI and hamstring injuries together before. If not hamstrings then he'll keep looking. I am walking better. Suck it and see, we'll know in 4 wks if its helped. It could be like phantom limb things where your nerves are so screwed you just THINK you feel pain..... err I THINK not! Just wait and see, which is fair enough.
I do though trust this specialist,he seems different to other consultants I've seen, conscientious and genuinely after making you better. Thank the lord!
Anyways.. in summary, it hurt and we'll see..

Monday, 21 September 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery 10wks, 3 days

Generally my recovery from this hip arthroscopy is much the same. VERY slow and small improvements, almost undetectable. I have started been able to sleep on my front a little again. My limp has lessened provided that I don't walk far, that I take small steps (feel like a geisha!) and walk at a slow pace. I must consider each step as one leg has a fair distance heel strike and the other can't reach half as far, hence the limp.
I realize I was limping before the hip arthroscopy op also, just not so easily provoked.

I'm still taking the 2 x meloxicam, but this week, only one night has needed night time extra meds.
I had a lot of pain though yesterday and purely as we had guests for lunch and I sat eating for a while, easily under one and a half to 2 hours, but its clear to see how a sit down job would be impossible! Grrr God I miss journalism!

As I am sitting now, both sers of my toes are tingling and I have pain in my operated hip's bum cheek. Having read a little on hamstrings, it appears they can trap the sciatic nerve and mimic true sciatica which could explain a lot; as well as the bottom pain.

Wuhoo gotta go, 2 great phone calls, appointment for Ultrasound re hamstrings, then see Surgeon.. Please let this be the final missing piece of my pain jigsaw discovered on Wednesday by Surgeon??? ..and house viewing in 1 hour and I hope someone buys this gorgeous stair hell I live in!

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Hip Arthroscopy recovery 9wks, 6days some results in every way!

The last few days I have had some kind of definite improvement. I have not required top up paracetamol or any heat patches over my hip at night. I am though still taking 2 x 7.5mg meloxicam/mobic everyday, as I believe my problem is inflammation though I'm unclear why at this stage.

I received the results of my MRI scan today. My sacroiliac joint is fine, prob the 6 years of therapies have fixed it, boom boom! OR there was never anything wrong with it as I suspected!! Hmmmm, however the surgeon is correct again and there is a problem with my hamstrings. The MRI was not clear enough to say why, other than that there appears to be oedema (I knew my growing ass after this hip arthroscopy wasn't all down to chocolate!!) and inflammation, which indicates something, though unsure what yet. The surgeon is, I understand, going to arrange an ultra sound for a clearer picture of the situation. I look forward to getting the hamstrings resolved.

There must be improvement on my operated side as I would normally feel considerable pain despite the medication and I am still feeling pain in my "good" hip, which as you know isn't really good, so this kind of pain easily breaks through medications and isn't causing much pain on my operated side.
Also I have been able to sleep on my front twice, only for half an hour at a time, but that's a first in 6 yrs and also I can open my legs to equal distance now after the hip flexor exercises retrained my muscles.
I DO NOT think I am out of the woods yet at all, I scarcely dare post this in case I jinx myself! But I think these are positive signs, that may become a trend, that may become a recovery!!
My good side is very symptomatic still, I think it may have eased a little with the steroid, but right now its pinching the hell out of my groin and giving me a pain in the bum cheek!
I am religiously doing my bridge exercise, all my hip exercises and one with a theraband. I am stretching my psoas hanging one leg off the bed and lightly stretching my hamstrings. I do this particular set of exercises as they really feel to help. And I aim to start aqua stuff within days, as I really felt such benefit on holiday from doing these.
The house officially goes on the market this afternoon so bye bye stairs (bit premature in this market!) but I will miss the house as its JUST how I want it, but I will not miss 30 stairs from top to bottom!

Friday, 11 September 2009

Hip arthroscopy recovery 9 wks, MRI scan

Well I am with the fairies tripping... serious MRI phobia. Took 5mg diaz as left home... nothing! took ano half so 2.5 more, then at the point it he told me it would go in up to my head and take an hour and a half and need a dye contrast injection I took another 2.5mg = 10MGS!!!!!! Off my trolley. And it took ages, half way thru to work.
They're looking to see if they've missed anything obvious causing the sitting pain, aside from my hip, but related to my hip. Apparently with hip problems you can get a triad effect (no, nothing to do with machete wielding Chinese men!) but it can knock onto the hamstrings and sacroiliac joint and I asked for the glute bit. So when all was done the whole thing took 2 hours.
I was trying to explain the horror of MRI scanners to my mother, who isn't the most compassionate person and has no medical experience to draw from.. I said its like been locked in a lift so small your nose touches the door and then having a bunch of lunatives whacking the metal lift with dustbin lids to make it really noisy and scary.

She just rolled her eyes and said, "Lou do you have to be so graphic!?" I said just trying to get you to picture why its so scary and perhaps get a smidgen of sympathy."Alright, she said "I'd hate it too!" Hmm thanks, that's my Mum been all warm and fuzzy!!!

Anyway I am alive, off my face and awaiting results with little anticipation, if nothing then just a bloody slllooowww recovering hip, it something its more grief is it even fixable? Poor Bupa! They have, so far been fantastic.

Well, going house hunting tomorrow, because there are 30 stairs in my house to get from the entrance to the bedrooms! Exciting to view potential new home ..but you know whilst most people can't wait to get into the kitchens and bathrooms, I'm going to be heading for the staircase, doing a stair count and checking step depth, its tragic...
why don't I just send myself an 80th birthday card, move into a bungalow and have done with it!!!

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Hip Arthroscopy recovery 8wks 5days

Pain up and down. Today fairly ok, yesterday had me crying and still in both hips

I'm fast coming to the conclusion that I am overdoing it. Not by excess, but simply by standing so long. I still can't sit for very long comfortably, I won't sit for more than 10 mins, unless driving...which means I am on my feet most of the day and I'm GUESSING thats too much, most people sit for 8hrs just at work and watching TV.
My only rest is to lay down and that is preeeettty antisocial! and when I'm out impossible, so I think the standing, thats how I'm overdoing it. Still why can't I sit?

I am going for an MRI scan on Friday, boooooo scary. Professor Schilders ordered it. He wants to see if I've hurt my hamstrings where they join the bone and check out my sacrolliac joint and I've asked if they can check my glutes... there was a time when I used to quite like it when men checked out my ass, but not for this reason!!!
I know my glutes and hips keep spasming, just now the problem is gone, I no longer know why?!

Have put my house on the market this week. I love this house, I have it just how I like it, but the stairs are well, too many! Its 3 stories, so up and down and up and down all day, its killing me!! That and we're in the countryside and I need to be in the suburbs because everything is too far to drive to. This is me resigning to the pain and that it may be ongoing. The op hasn't/isn't going to just whisk the pain away and it need the other side doing yet! Ah well, least we can afford to trade up a little too.

Anyone else recovering quite this err crapily?

Sunday, 6 September 2009

hip arthroscopy recovery wk8, day 2, water baby!

Hip has noticeably improved in the last week.
I took a weeks holiday, inspired by the ever helpful PA of Professor Shilders. I went to Majorca, Spain, a very quiet beach, warm waters, gentle shelving into the calm sea. Hot weather, no stairs and everything close by.

I noticed the difference and realized my own lifestyle must antagonize my hip, making recovery more challenging. I still had a couple of really down days when I got pain flares and it seemed prompted by one day climbing 2 flights of stairs (at home I do that just to get in and out of my house!) and one night sitting in a bucket style chair. I have to say now when it flares I seem to go into despair quite quickly.. I think I'm afraid I'll never escape it all! But, I've had a few good days and am feeling quite positive and I now also know there's a direct link with activity and setting back rehab. SO, yes exercise, but if you're quite an active person also, then watch out for over doing it!

I felt REAL benefit from doing aqua exercises, I think in water you can stretch and move so much more. The exercises I was doing in water felt very remedial, but I swear have helped more than I could've imagined, so now I need to join a local pool and do this more. I simply walked forwards, backwards, sideways. raised my hip/knee to 90 degrees, also did the same but reaching to touch my foot behind me. Also raising my leg 90 degrees then crossing my foot over the opposite knee.
Also tentatively swam breaststroke and it all felt good to do... though actually I must've looked v strange!!

The sand was also amazing. I lost my limp in the sand, walking felt great, real heal toe walking.
The other thing I did was my core exercises on the sunbed, esp the bridge and hip flexor exercises. And one last thing that I feel helped was standing with my legs a couple of feet apart and GENTLY rocking from one hip to the other. Normally this action should be a smooth one, but for me its smooth one way then like going over a painful hump the other way...again this got easier and easier in the sand and now much smoother. As I'm sure you can imagine I wanted to stay a month and get myself right!!

I cried in the airport as from day 2 on holiday I didn't need my crutches at all for the whole of the holiday, it was like a miracle, but on my return Majorca has a big airport and I needed my crutches again. However I have been home 2 days and not needed them so lets see how this week pans out.

I have started taking mobic or meloxicam 7.5mg per day to help with inflammation, but trust me, if I get bad the pain easily gets through, so I think I might be doing okay!

One other thing I have started doing is massaging my glutes and hips with a tennis ball against a wall, to try reduce the muscle spasms and trigger points that I am still suffering with. I don't know why still the muscle spasms on the operated side, what does it think it's protecting?? Its a bad pain muscle spasm and mine seems to irritate my sciatic nerve too, so this aspect has to go. I want to calm the whole area, joint, muscles, nerves in the hip down.

Still very much day by day small improvements, but I think and hope I'm getting passed that 'wall' that people talk of and that I'm on the up again.

Saturday, 29 August 2009

Hip Arthroscopy recovery 7 wks, 1day

Yesterday was ok pain-wise, things calmed down, though with packing and having to run some last minute errands, for our last minute holiday in the sun, I pushed a bit hard.

Surprisingly despite this level of activity I was ok in both my operated hip and steroid injected hip, more muscular aches, although developed a weird stabbing pain in my groin of the operated side which I had never experienced before?! Scary as a very sharp pain that takes your breath away? I rested with ice and I hope if I take it easy today, the day before I travel, that it will completely disappear?

Dreading the travel as its a total of three and a half hours on planes or in cars. BUT when I get there, the hotel is almost on the beach, everything is close by. The sea is shallow, warm and calm as a rule and if not the pool is available, so HOPEFULLY the aqua therapy side of it should do me the world of good.
Away a week, keep well fellow hippys xx

Thursday, 27 August 2009

hip arthroscopy rehab 6wks, 6 days.

Saw surgeon yesterday for my second appointment post hip arthroscopy for FAI (pincer type) and labral detachment. I'd say it went well. He went out of his way to ease my fears and to help me understand the things I didn't understand.

I'll explain the questions I asked and the answers I heard, by that I mean I am not quoting by any stretch, its my understanding of his replies..which aren't always super clear!

Q: I have the same pain as before the hip arthroscopy, but worse, why?
A: You had chronic, misdiagnosed, pain for 6 yrs, My, surgeon's, personal research on patients over the years show that if the patient had a very bad pain and lifestyle score before surgery, it takes longer to get better. Someone in less pain, or for a shorter period, usually improves immediately from operation, be doing well at 2 months, to max improvement at 6 months. However someone like me will struggle to attain good results by 2 months and in fact may get worse by 2 months, but USUALLY the 2 groups of people meet at 6 months, at the same level of improvement.

Q: How often do they 'not' get better if they haven't got arthritis or another deformity.
A: Never happened.

Q: What grade of arthritis do I have now.
A: None, you just had the wave sign, the beginning of arthritis and that's fixed now.

Q: Where there any complications during surgery?
A: Absolutely non, your surgery went just as I hoped, I was very happy with the result.

Q: What complications could cause residual pain for me?
A: Possibly inflammation within the hip capsule

Surgeon then asked my when my pain level started to increase and I said when I came off crutches and apparently this isn't too unusual, I think I am to pace myself. He did say though, to use ice and anti inflamatries and to stay active, whilst pacing myself. Inactivity is bad.

He also asked about my fall. I demonstrated (Aly McBeal moment), I think we concluded it may not be that significant, but that a further MRA at this stage post op would not be clear enough to identify any problems. I agreed not wanting to further aggravate my hip at this stage.

Q: I asked about my psoas possibly causing further impingement?
A: He concluded that as it had discontinued snapping over 50 times a day and was now only snapping once or twice it was unlikely to still be a problem.. He went on further to explain psoas impingement on a pincer impingement, but I broke the golden rule of journalism and starting thinking about the next question (not that this is an interview, just old habits die hard!), I was anxious to get through all the questions and having concluded it was no longer an issue, I wanted to line up my next Q.

Q: What is the possibility I could have retroversion, or some such thing to require further open surgery?
A: I HEARD: not a problem for you, everyone that has pincer has some level of retroversion, then he waved his arms in the air demonstration imaginary hip sockets at different angles and I think I heard blah blah retroversion blah..pincer; he was explaining but my thoughts had stalled at everyone with pincer has some level of retroversion? ...and I was thinking but it does cause some people to have bigger ops, does he just mean just I won't need a further op? ..And blah blah blah?

Q: I asked about the pointy bits in my pelvis that stick out on x-ray.
A: I HEARD Blah blah, everyone like you has them, a 'blah angle'..I was just still amazed he understood my really bad diagram I drew to demonstrate my question!

Q: Does it take a while for your muscles and tendons to catch up?
A: Yes.

Q: Can I have an x-ray to show all the impingement has gone?
A: No its not necessary, the way I work is that I test and retest your impingement in surgery until its perfect, with the angles on x-ray you might not even see the improvement. (Still really wanted an x-ray, but I wanted a steroid more and that was my next question and I didn't fancy my chances of getting both!)

Q: My left hip, my good hip is really going downhill, can I have a steroid, because I need it to support my other hip? That's why couldn't go onto one crutch as one crutch is held in the opposite arm and has you lean a little on the opposite leg, causing further pain in that hip for me.
A: Yes no problem, now?


He then tested my mechanics and was quite happy I could get my leg close up to my chest. I described the sitting pain I get that travels down my leg, a lot into my calf and occasionally toes (I blame piriformis and then it pressing on sciatic nerve, though feels like pain on sit bone)
The surgeon pressed a few spots around my sit bone and queried hamstring tendinitis where the tendon meets the bone. Additional pain source, compensatory of my hip I think. He said we could follow up that query after my holiday with an MRI (Oh NO!!!) of some sort.

I went off for lunch in a trendy bar in Shipley (ringing bupa to quickly sort out the finance and authorization) and then came back for my steroid injection.
The worst part,back in hospital, was getting locked in the loo, prior to steroid injection!
I fiddled with the door a while, was a bit stiff and in the end thought wasn't locked, so thought I better pee fast! Then, when I went to open the door it was LOCKED and would not unlock (I can't begin to tell you how claustrophobic I am, hence MRI phobia!) I hammered on the door yelling 'Help I'm locked in the loo!!' Some weird calm descended and I thought 'Yes I knew this would happen one day! Confirming my paranoia! 'I've been rehearsing for it ALL my life, stay calm'
The voices on the other side of the door said "where's the lock pointing?" I thought, breath...calm.. "nine O'clock." I said urgently, thinking wow I sound like I know what I'm talking about, like Keiffer Sutherland in a crisis, in 24!
"Okay, the voice came back, turn it the other way" I thought I've gotta get this right "which way?" I shouted back.. "Err anti clockwise or clockwise?" then voice came back again "anti clockwise." I turned it, as hard as I could, it jammed for a few moments then released and flew of of the door, straight into my nurse saviors!
"That's never happened before!" they said. I retorted suspiciously, with narrowing eyes "And yet you knew what to tell me to do!?" The girl said 'I was just guessing and hoping!' ..I nearly threw up, but opted for laughing!

By comparison the steroid injection was a breeze! No, truly I was still a big scaredy cat,because I just am, but it only was as bad as a blood test, just more intimidating. Don't ever fear a hip injection, the nerves are too dull, its not like drilling teeth, there are no sudden shocks, at worst a dull ache that you can't quite pinpoint. I've had three now, all the same.

The only thing that has freaked me out was it gave me no pain relief I think! I still had the pain down my leg part, which shocked me and made me also think more seriously about what he was saying about hamstring tendinitis ontop of FAI and labral detachment. I think I may have a pain of 2 parts, hip/groin/sacro type pain, but the bit that travels down my leg maybe part muscular, perhaps in its way trying to protect the hip? Sounds a nice, neat theory, time will tell..

A long road still to travel I think, still chasing the end of that rainbow!

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

hip arthroscopy rehab 6 and1/2wks.. The culprit is living!

Well on Sunday night I took all the big guns that I took post hip arthroscopy to sleep. Diclofenac and co-codamol and after days and days I had pretty much a pain free sleep.

But again, a day later it is starting to flare up... and here's what I did yesterday after 4 days of stopping exercise and pretty much stopping all activity/living.

I sat upright for all 3 meals (all quick meals) I drove a half hour round trip for some minor errands (buying stamps, posting letters and then culminating with the most exciting part of the day getting petrol!!

4 hours later I got to go out again, 10 min round trip to doctors for more medication. I had to wait in the doctors for a long time, 1st 10 mins sitting, next 20 mins I found a bench to lay on.

I held Isabella for 30 seconds whilst standing (she was passed to me and taken off me, so no bending, twisting, lifting).

I also got back on the stationary bike for the 1st time in 4 days and did a half hour cycle, back down to NO resistance.(I don't suspect the bike is antagonizing the pain, as I have been able to cycle from day 2 post hip arthroscopy for FAI.)

Compared to last 4 days, yesterday was super active. I continued to make a point of not standing around the house and in the main I laid down a lot!

I iced once in the morning and once later, though the ice pack hadn't totally frozen again by the evening. I also started taking bromelain, an extract of pineapple said to be great for reducing inflammation post surgery and is widely recognized and used in Germany since 1993 for that purpose, after successful small study results. Worth a try.

Went to bed took the big guns again, diclofenac and co codamol and guess what... Yes you got it, MORE pain and LESS sleep and possibly more hip irritation.

The only variable is LOW, LOW, LOW levels of activity... I need to find a way to function as a mother of two soon. I am currently working at 5% capacity and everyone around me is cracking under the pressure of my inactivity. More to the point though, this isn't the estimated level of activity and ability expected at this stage of recovery by far. I'm supposed to be speed walking!

SO tomorrow I want to know why, specifics, not woolly "we'll have to wait and see" stuff. I NEED to know what's going wrong? How to get out of it? Can I get out of it? What grade was the arthritis found? How sure is he there is no retroversion? Or any other deformity? X-rays to show that the impingement has gone and from different angles? I NEED to KNOW the impingement has gone. Steroid injections a possibility? If anyone else can think of anything I should ask, please feel free to suggest.. Not looking forward to going, as its probably an hours round trip and I hope I get some answers for the 'physical' cost of traveling!

I'm also still limping, still on crutches on stairs and out of the house, but I can imagine that slowly sorting itself out and it doesn't seem unusual.

Sunday, 23 August 2009

hip arthroscopy rehab 6wks, 2 days Anything is too much?

I honestly feel like smashing things! Its only 3pm on Sunday afternoon and already I'm in pain on both sides. To hold my body weight I need to lean onto my good hip, only my good hip has gone so bad since the op, it was going downhill before the op, that I can't, so I put more weight on the operated side and guess what, I CAN"T! So actually I can't walk or go up 100's of stairs in this stupid 3 story house that I can't sell because of the credit crunch! I do not know what to do with myself to avoid any weight bearing on either side. I now need to use crutches even pottering in the house! Esle all pain flares.

I've come upstairs to explode onto this stupid blog to avoid screaming and crying 'someone PLEASE help me!!!????' ...and disolving into a fit of pointless tears on the floor by the cooker, in front of the children ...not that anyone could help me..

I am trapped in this crap body and can't even be a mother, let alone sit down long enough to hold down a bloody job as a journalist. I've lost hobbies and activities, followed by a career and now I'm feeling robbed of my precious time with my babies and motherhood. I have look through to find a nanny to do my job, not that we can afford that given I can no longer work blah blah blah blah ......and yes I know I'm not dying and yes it certainly could be worse and normally I can control my feelings with these platitudes, but today after several long, enduring painful days I am losing hope, and possibly perspective...then again in my shoes, from my perspective there doesn't seem to be much hope!

Right affected, faltering smiley face back on to have lunch, LAYING DOWN, with the family!

hip arthroscopy rehab 6wks, 2 days how much is too much?

Slightly better nights sleep. Feels to be calming very, very 'slightly'. But only because I spent all yesterday again laying about, as God forbid I should stand and weight bear, or sit! I even ate laying down yesterday, which is challenging when you have guests for dinner! I still can only sit for 10 - 15 minutes at a push, but I can feel that action really flaring everything up, it actually hurts instantly I sit.

Seeing the surgeon for 2nd review appointment on Wednesday. I'm rather concerned how I am going to travel an hour round trip to get there, plus the inevitable time sitting and waiting for my appointment. Very concerned how I will travel abroad sitting on 3 hour journey a week today??! I will end up crippled for the holiday! Very worried, wish I'd not booked the holiday now. The whole situation rapidly becoming a nightmare.

I need to write a list of questions for the surgeon, but almost can't be bothered as I suspect most answers will be summarized with 'wait and see!'
I do remember the surgeon saying some people actually get worse before they get better (I dismissed that thinking 'not me!') But I wonder if that's urban myth or real and if real, just how many people has this really actually happened to that HAVE got better? One, two?

This recovery is so disheartening and adding to the trouble my childcare person has had enough and all but abandoned us, as my recovery clearly threatens to stretch past the 6 week mark and be indefinite! So I need urgently to fix up some childcare solutions for Isabella, my 24lb, 10 month old little tank girl and my son, who starts school in 2 weeks. I have no idea how I can get him to and from school, esp with baby in tow!
Its very, very frustrating as one of the key questions I asked was 'how long before I can pick up my 'heavy' baby again?' 'Six weeks' was the answer, but that's completely laughable, not a chance, I can't actually carry my own weight!

If getting up, showering, eating meals, popping out for a loaf of bread, then settling down, laying on the sofa is too much for my hip, what chance have I of looking after 2 young children and all their demands, absolutely none, only a woman with children would appreciate this.

Pre op, I could do that badly, a total struggle, but currently that's a total impossibility... So I am beginning to question my decisions and actions and the wisdom of those around me... I suppose that's inevitable.

Saturday, 22 August 2009

hip arthroscopy rehab wk 6

Can't lay ofr more than few hours, can't sit more than 5 minutes, can't stand for long without consequence, can't walk without crutches or pain. Daren't do the most basic exercises. I can't calm down the pain with medication or ice. Don't know what to do with myself. Completely at a loss.

I am supposed to be traveling abroad to go on holiday next week, don't know how I can sit for 3 hours to get there, but I can't cancel, as travel insurance won't cover my hip. That didn't seem a problem when I booked it 2 weeks ago?!
Pain deep and all encompassing, want to pull my leg off and have done with it, as pain wraps around the whole area. I feel just awful, warn out with this persistant pain.

Looking back I think its started flaring up since coming off crutches, but trust me I couldn't do much less, unless I didn't sit for 'quick' meals, or stand to brush my teeth or lay down to sleep!!

Friday, 21 August 2009

hip arthroscopy rehab wk 6

I don't understand, night and day blighted by acute, chronic hip pain, worse than the days post op, as bad as worst flare ups in past. Hips are taking turns in who is the bad guy.. operated side by far the worst.
Beside myself... doing VERY little, even dropped exercises all exercises; and back on both crutches. What the hell is happening and why now...I thought I was going to be a success story, I don't understand!

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

hip arthroscopy rehab wk 5 - 6 concerns

Something definitely doesn't feel right. Another sleepless night. Last night had to take diclofenac and paracetamol and wear a heat patch. Normally one of these would be enough to knock out the pain...all 3 combined only dulled the pain enough to allow a light, broken sleep. I haven't needed that many drugs since week one recovery, post hip arthroscopy.

Could I be over doing it? ..but I'm only doing light tasks. Yesterday I did some work sitting at my computer for an hour, drove for 45 minutes and went to a shop to buy my son a pair of shoes, made myself lunch/dinner etc - used one crutch outside. Just did light stuff, its been this way for a a week now.
Didn't cycle yesterday because of the pain sitting towards the end of the day. Did my exercises, they don't feel hard. Noticed in 3 days I am supposed to start a walk/jog programme - absolutely no chance! I am still limping and nowhere near up to that.


I can't lay on my back comfortably, or tilt onto my operated side...though oddly I'm more comfortable fully on my operated hip short term, than on the buttock of the same side. I feel pain. I wonder if my piriformis is irritated as sometimes pain travels into my calf, or is it just my hip, its deep buttock pain either way. The pain also feels wrapped around my leg and as high as iliac crest too. Also standing in the shower I noticed putting some weight through my leg/hip on the operated side causes such a deep throb, its no wonder I can't wait to lean over onto the other side, but this can't be good for my gait and its how it felt before the scope. My leg on the operated side is apparently 1cm longer, I wonder if the means that that hip takes more pressure when I stand with an even gait?
I know this much, I don't know enough and I can't cure myself, but I can ask questions. I know also that I am becoming very concerned that this hip arthroscopy may have failed.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

hip arthroscopy rehab day 1 million supposed bloody recovery!

Woke AGAIN with pain in bum/hip. This happens every night now! I still have pain when I sit and no idea if walking distance aggravates it, as I can't yet do that! WHY, WHY WHY hasn't it gone?

I had the hip arthroscopy to treat the pincer FAI with Professor Schilders. Its supposed to have been a success, but pardon my confusion when I feel very much the same as before?!

I have been told to wait for for results from the op, like some kind of 'will it or won't it work?' surprise.. but it feels the same and I fear thats not right.

I'd welcome different pain, I just don't understand why it feels the same? I am getting to my wits end with this ridiculous roller coaster, it would test the patience of a saint! And NO-ONE seems able to tell me why it feels the same?!?!?!?!

In the same way labral tears come with FAI, FAI often comes with retroversion or coxa funda or something, of the acetabulum, I have little comprehension what these are yet, but wonder if 'that's' the problem? Or has Schilders missed a bit? Or should I have had a CT scan to be precise, Or should I have had the rear of the acetabulum scoped? Have I over done or underdone physio?

What are my options? I just don't bloody know????? But I am bored of this, fed up of this, want to escape this, I feel trapped inside my stupid body, forever hoping someone can fix the problem and then the disappointment if they can't!

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Hip Arthropscopy FAI rehab 5 wks post op

Recovery from hip arthroscopy for FAI is going steadily, with some glitches, but ultimately I think I'm SLOWLY climbing the hill of recovery. I am able to do tons more this weekend. I have cooked Sunday lunch, cleaned, done laundry, been out to shops, been out for a meal, played with the kids. All of this I do with mindful movement and rest when too tired and if I want to walk outside of the house, then I take one crutch, as soon as I do more than potter about, I do still limp.

I am still suffering night pain which I find distressing, so I have gone back to one night time diclofenac and ice before bed. I suspect its the increase in activity and I suspect my muscles are playing catch up with my bones and still are using old patterns of movement. I think my piriformis has been over active for years and is having trouble backing off and taking a back seat in supporting my hip.

I also have to remind myself its still early days if you look at the big picture... I'm not saying I'm without fear, I do have my "my God what if this hasn't worked??" moments, but I'm really trying to put doubts to the back of my mind.
I can say my shiny, new hip really feels like it glides now when I bring my knee to my chest, as opposed to a deep pain and feeling like a tight bands pulling the opposite direction. I can only think its been like this as long as I can remember, as that smooth action feels entirely alien to me.
As my Gran used to say, just keep on plodding, its the plodders that get there!

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Hip Athroscopy rehab day 33 helpful tips





Post hip arthroscopy
for FAI there are some things that will make your days a little easier and I have put some pictures up of how I arranged the bedroom to help survive first 4 weeks post op. Things that you need for FAI surgery, basics really.

1. Large, as can fit, non slip shower mat.
2. Shower stool, I hated everything about it, but frankly showering wouldn't have been possible, certainly the first 3 weeks without it! I got mine for £40 at Argos and really whist I thought it a bit pricey it was worth it. You could possibly get a basic chair in, but closing the cubicle could be challenging and also these stools have non slip sucker feet.
3. Also bought some suction grip handles to help with both manoeuvring around in the shower, but also one by the loo. £15 Argos for 2. In the early weeks this was super handy too.
4. The other thing I did was leave the exercise bike at the foot of the bed, just so it wasn't a hassle to go and cycle and I also put a foot stool there to make climbing on and off the bike easier.

The only other things I can think was with the crutches I put my DVT stockings around the crutch handles and taped them there, not pretty but super soft on your hands. Not one blister. I tried cycle handle bar tape, but by the time there was enough on to make the crutch handles soft, the handles we too big for my hands to fit around!

Also, in the last week coming off crutches, when on the stairs instead of doing the correct good foot to heaven, bad foot to hell, I swapped them over whilst still on crutches. This way, on the way down the stairs my bad foot/leg/hip got used to bending in a controlled way and on the way up stairs my bad foot/leg/hip got used to flexing at the knee with pressure to lift you upstairs. I did that to practice but would only recommend doing that for the few days preceding coming off crutches. I'm sure it helped as I haven't found our 3 story house as hard to get around as I thought I would early off crutches.

Todays progress?
Physiotherapy was painful today, as Louise did trigger point massage, agony but you know it'll pay off.. Still a lots of muscle spasm around the glutes and hips. One great thing is that my glutes are finally building up muscle in the side that has already had surgery. The other side that needs surgery despite doing the same exercises just isn't building, which is interesting because before my op no matter what I did I couldn't build those muscles and only ever succeeded in irritating them.

My physio also watched my gait when walking and advised that as I'm still limping it would be wise to use one crutch until the limp goes, so I'm doing that too.

Today I had a shower WITHOUT the stool, hurrah! Even after the shower just standing in a pair of jeans drying my hair, felt so good to be upright, unaided and without pain.

I'm a long way from better yet, but the changes are literally measurable.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Hip Arthroscopy rehab day 32 walking progress

Walking ability coming along slowly but surely. 3 days ago tried to walk, without crutches around the green where we live, its just under 1/4 mile long, managed a third of it. Today, 3 days later walked almost all before I felt some pain,then switched back to crutches when I felt pain. I see no point in pushing my body before its ready. A week ago today I would've laughed at you had you said I could walk that far, or at all, without crutches!

Cycling (stationary), I can now cycle for ages unless my 'good' bad hip plays up, but its nearly always that 'good' hip that hurts first when cycling and sitting too.

The downside at the mo, is am getting a fair bit of night pain again, but I think its because I'm pushing my boundaries after relative inactivity of the last 4 weeks and also I think with my bad, operative hip, there's a lot of muscle and tendon malfunction or imbalance from years of compensation. I hope thats the cause!

Thinking I want my 'good' hip fixed now, as the pain is becoming both acute and chronic and I don't want to allow the same damage to be done as in my 'bad' hip. It takes longer to fix the more damage done, entirely logical. I genuinely think if I fixed my good hip, 3 months later than my bad hip, that I will still see positive results faster in the good hip!

Looking forward to tomorrow, going to hurl the shower stool out of my shower cubicle (though only so far as the attic, for next time, utterly invaluable!!)

Saturday, 8 August 2009

Hip Arthroscopy rehab day 29 on the up

Post hip arthroscopy I am feeling stronger day by day.
Had a lovely conversation with Professor Schilder's secretary that really hit home. You need to give your body time to heal, at least 6 weeks to 2 months before you see results and all sorts about focus and perspective and with lots of anecdotal evidence. If you're surgeon's secretary is as helpful as Schilder's secretary you're lucky because they have a wealth of experience from been at the front line, fielding all the calls to the surgeons and see everything first hand. Whilst she won't go stray into Schilder's territory re specific physical post hip arthroscopy complaints, she will reiterate his advice in laymen terms and gives support.

Somehow her words of wisdom hit home and made me go out shopping and to enjoy the sunny day a bit more, instead of impatiently waiting to improve and googling to see why my recovery from hip arthroscopy isn't faster!

Walking is improving. All round strength is improving, all day by day. I now potter around the house, using one crutch when I tire and two crutches for the stairs and outside.. I intend to slowly ween off over the week.

ps re shopping, don't try hang your shopping off crutch handles when out and about. I brought home a bag of not apples, but apple mush because of the bags swinging and battering the crutches as you stride and a bunch of battered, broken flowers!!

Thursday, 6 August 2009

Hip Arthroscopy rehab day 27

4 weeks post hip arthroscopy tomorrow and I am allowed off crutches. I can now walk forwards, but with a limp, slowly and not very far at all. I can shuffle around within a room. I think I will be weening off crutches for a week or two sadly.
Frustratingly my good hip is hurting really badly again, partly over use, but mostly its on its way out. I can't bring myself to commit to another op though until I see some results from this one.. but battling with that argument in my head is the increasing pain from my good hip and not wanting it to become as badly damaged as my bad hip and so increase the recovery time.
I can cycle more smoothly with my operated hip now although having to prematurely stop the length of my cycling sessions because of the impingement on my good hip! The irony!
Exercises continuing and fairly uneventful, I'm looking forward to getting into the water but want to be steadier on my feet poolside before I risk water exercises.

Saw my original physio Louise yesterday, she tested my hip ROM. Some of my (ROM) movements were more flexible on the hip arthroscopy hip than my good hip which I thought interesting. She also tweaked the exercises I was given to make them more effective. No matter how well exercises are written down, it pays to check you're doing them correctly. I also realized how grateful I was that I had been doing similar and same isometric exercises before hand as they're familiar to my body, making them easier to do.
One other thing I wish I'd known earlier was that I NEED to massage the surgery incision points to stop them pulling the skin and muscle inwards and causing pain, a few days ago they looked like they were sinking (bit like cellulite, but worse) and my physio explained I need to firmly massage the area for 10 minutes a couple of times a day to reduce scarring. I hope its not too late to do that, the last thing I need is any source of more pain right now.

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Hip Arthroscopy rehab day 25

Hip arthroscopy is definitely the long road in terms of recovery, but I'm going to have to stick to my life motto, 'always walk on the sunny side of the street', or long road in the case of hip arthroscopy!

Well, mentally feeling better, mostly bolstered by the support of you fellow surfers and bloggers and also by the advice of the surgeon. I does help that he allows patients his mobile number, so that when hope fails you, you can call and seek his opinion. He says in short 'its early days'. There's that long road rearing its ugly head again.

Well somethings happening because my body wants to go down to one crutch, I'm not allowing it yet, until Friday (4 weeks), but my body definitely has the urge to drop one crutch. It is unconscious as I certainly do not want to tempt fate, or risk pushing myself. I have also discovered I can walk backwards better than forwards, whats that about?? Might try moon walking next!!
My hubby shouted across the room 'WOW YOU CAN WALK!!!' And I went into evangelical "praise the Lord, I can walk!' and back into sarcastic "I could walk before the op you idiot!!" Bad tempers not left yet either, oh how I'd hate to live with me right now!

Anyway, trying to make the most of small improvements. I can kind of walk, err albeit backwards, but its a start.