Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Today is 6 weeks since surgery. The time has flown and dragged at the same time. I am not sure how that is possible but it is. I have been off of crutches for the most part for about a week. I still don't feel like my walk is 100% but it gets a tiny bit better every day. I still have some tightness in my groin but I keep telling myself that is normal. Yikes! I am deathly afraid of forming more scar tissue but I am trying to send positive energy to the healing parts anyway. I don't want to prove the mind over matter theory by obsessing over scar tissue and ending up with more. Yikes! The CPM went away yesterday and today I gained 2 more hours of my life back. Woooohooo. I am amazed at the amount of time that I spend doing "something" for my hip. Immediately after surgery it was about 10 hours a day to get everything done. Now, I feel like it's more manageable but it still does take several hours a day to concentrate on getting all of my at home exercises done. So today I begin some minor strengthening exercises. YAY!! I will look forward to having some muscle definition in my legs once again. It's amazing how quickly muscle tone disappears while on crutches. Scary really. Every time I get in my car, my bike calls my name. Ugh! I so want to get back on my bike and ride. Not sure when that comes in my recovery but I am already looking forward to it! And, the kayak .. . whine, whine, whine. Patience is not one of my strengths and I am seriously close to doing a bit of each. The thing that stops me -- fear of re-developing scar tissue. So, I ride the stationary bike - no resistance - for 20 minutes twice a day every day and stare longingly at my bike and kayak counting down the days until I see Dr. Philippon and can get a plan in place to get me back on/in both. Heading back out to Vail in July. Seeing Dr. Philippon on July 16 - 4 weeks away. I sometimes wish I had stayed the full 6 weeks in Vail because I am nervous about whether I am where I should be. Deep down I think I am fine but I am so jumpy about this scar tissue thing that I would like a PT who sees hip recovery all the time tell me that everything is fine. :-) I will sum up 6 weeks by saying that I am glad it's over and so far so good. I hope the only thing that changes is that I continue to feel stronger and better! More to come.
Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Today I am celebrating! I got to turn in the calf pumps today and I am thrilled to not have my legs sweat through the night and the whirring sound of the motor as it pumps and deflates the cuffs. I didn't think they were too bad when I first had to wear them but I soon grew tired of them and sleeping with them for the last night was almost unbearable. :-) And, I am able to decrease my time in the cpm to just 2 hours per day. It feels like I have just gotten some of my time back. It's not much but 2 to 4 hours a day is a lot to gain right now with all of the other things I am doing. Yay!! Real progress at last. I have been walking 50% weight bearing for almost a week now. It feels good . . still a little unstable and my hip still feels tight but it feels good enough that I have forgotten to grab my crutches a couple of times and have started to walk unassisted. This is the week that I start upping my weight on my left side until I am walking without crutches on Sunday. Scary!!! There's no real pain with any movement but I am still definitely stiff and tight and lots of muscles still don't really want to work very hard. I always forget how long it takes to get everything back into good working order after this surgery. Since I am not the most patient person in the world, I want it all now. Ugh!!! The medical bills have started to come in. One word -- SCARY!!! And, it seems to be a full time job to review what was submitted, how it was submitted and what I am responsible for. They come fast and furious in the mail every day. It's a little overwhelming. So far insurance has paid for most. There is one large one, however, that the insurance only paid $2500 out of $17,000. I am worried about a potential $15,000 bill coming my way. Ugh! We'll see on that one. Everything else looks good though. Ok, off to my busy day of circumduction, pt and a gelato as a reward!!
Sunday, June 3, 2012
I can't believe this is the first post since surgery. I had forgotten how miserable I am after surgery and just didn't feel like doing anything other than the prescribed have-to's. So, now almost 4 weeks out, I am starting to feel a little more normal (i say little) and thought I would do a quick post. So, first the surgery - ugh!!! Lots of scar tissue. It had adhered to my labrum and was pulling the labrum in half every time I took a step. Yes, no wonder I was miserable. In some way sick way, it is good to know that I wasn't crazy. :-) He had to replace anchors in my labrum and I am now the proud owner of 4 new anchors. He also shaved down a little more bone and released my very tight and very angry psoas. He told me when he did the release that it sprung like a guitar string because it was that tight. Hmmmmmm . . . am I surprised???? The good - I woke up from surgery and immediately felt relief from my constant, nagging, excrutiating back pain that has plagued me for the past 3 years. It has not returned in the 4 weeks post surgery so I am somewhat excited by the prospect that I may be ok. Shhhhhhh . . . I don't want to jinx anything here. So far so good though on the back pain. Dr. P also told me that my hip surfaces look better now than they did 3 years ago so I have actually had improvement in my hip. Wow!!! That is huge!!! And, lastly, he told me that once I get through all of my rehab that I will not have any restrictions. OMG!!!! Watch out world. :-) The bad -- Recovery is very different this time. I stayed in Vail for 6 weeks last time and when I came home, I was in rockin shape and doing pretty much what I wanted as far as exercise. I was lifting weights, doing leg presses and really building lots of strength. At 6 weeks this time, I will just be coming off crutches and starting to do my major strengthening. I am on crutches for almost 6 weeks as opposed to 3 last time. The CPM will go for 6 weeks instead of 3. It's a much longer and slower process this time. Dr Philippon told me that he has found scar tissue to be much more common in women so he has changed the protocol for post surgery to try to mitigate that. The ugly - Having never thrown up after surgery, I broke my winning streak. It was bad!!! I had to wear an anti-nausea patch behind my ear for several days as I just couldn't shake it. I spent the couple of weeks after surgery barely able to eat and hold anything down. (the good - I lost 13 lbs; the bad - I don't own any size 4 clothes). And, having made fun of someone last time out there for his record setting bruise, I was the proud receipient of the largest bruise this time. It literally went from my knee all the way up past where most people were allowed to see. It's still faint but going away. So, Tuesday will make 4 weeks out from surgery. The hip still feels marvelous. The muscles surrounding the hip are still very spotty. My IT band is tight, tight, tight. At one point, at PT told me that it felt like I had a golf ball in my IT band. My quad is tight especially where it and my IT band are friends. And, I have officially lost every muscle in my left leg - my calf is flabby and where in fact did the quad go? It's really hard to watch and especially hard to feel what has become a gelatinous mass of goo that once was a leg. ugh!!! I gain a teeny, tiny bit of mobility every day and am diligently doing all of my exercises hoping to make a dent in the muscle tone. My glute work is coming along and it's the only thing that seems to be responding to the exercises currently. J-LO watch out. I feel best in the pool and wish I could do it every day. There is a sense of freedom in walking without crutches and being able to get around. I look forward to the day I can do that on land. Overall, I am HAPPY to have this behind me and am looking forward to getting back. I promise to be more diligent about posting since I am home and feeling a bit better. For anyone planning a fun surgery visit to Vail - I found a condo that I would highly recommend. It's on VRBO.com and here is the link: http://www.vrbo.com/44689 Lorna was GREAT to work with and the condo was convenient and comfortable for a hip patient! More later!!