June 20, 2008 I had my hip resurfaced Monday morning on June 16th by Dr. Schmitt in Commerce, Michigan. I had been diagnosed with hip dysplasia and had been in constant pain (5-6 on a standard pain scale of 1-10) for months before my surgery. I developed pain in my leg more than a year ago which slowly progressed to groin pain (never occured to me that it was my hip!). What started as a slight limp became more of a lurch as I was literally throwing my body forward to walk! Finally began using a 4-prong cane and then pain began radiating to both buttocks. Needless to say, I was miserable and frankly at this point became pretty much home bound. Surgery came none to soon.
My surgery was scheduled for 9:00 a.m. and by 10:30 a.m. I was awake and in my room. Physical therapy pretty much began immediately. The first thing I noticed was how my pain had decreased. Other than pain in the surgical area and leg, I was no longer being tortured with pain throughout my buttocks. I was discharged to home on Wednesday morning (my 52nd birthday!). I was discharged with the standard Ted hose to reduce the chance of blood clots, 325 mg of aspirin a day, and Vicodin.
As of this date, I continue to be amazed how well I feel. Until my leg pain began I had always been a fairly active person, but not an athlete by any means. By the time I was diagnosed I had lost a great deal of muscle tone and strength.
Right now I am virtually pain free (maybe a 2 on the standard 1-10 pain scale. Having some trouble sleeping, but this is pretty normal. My right leg still feels stiff, however that seems to improve daily. I was fortunate to be able to have stiches instead of staples and my incision seems to be healing nicely.
All in all, I feel incredibly lucky and would high recommend to other future hippies to not delay the surgery. I also would highly recommend Dr. Phillip Schmitt. He is not only a great surgeon, but also personable with a great beside manner. He practices out of Huron Valley/Sinai Hospital which is part of the Detroit Medical Center.
I continue to do my physical therapy exercises and do as much walking (with the assist of a walker) as I can tolerate daily. I can tell if I am over doing it when my legs start feeling shaky!
June 21, 2008 This is now Day 6 post-op. Did discover yesterday that I am already getting frustrated at my mobility restrictions. Have to continually remind myself that it is getting a little better each day and I must be patient – I am not normally a patient person. Also, put some sweats on yesterday for the first time. I was shocked at the swelling on my right (surgery side), including my buttock area. My loose sweats no longer felt loose, just uncomfortable. I felt like the Goodyear Blimp. This was depressing although I understand that swelling is normal.
July 30, 2008 I am now 6 weeks post-op. I am having no problem bending down, but do it carefully! Have even been dancing, which is a great morale booster for me and good exercise! Still have trouble shaving my legs (you men have it so lucky!).
Still have limp and still using single cane, but walking a bit more normally everyday.
I did have my physical therapist drive me a little insane when he questioned why my left leg was shorter than the other (right hip was resurfaced.) I contacted my surgeon whom bascially said this was normal, too “chill out” and I am due to see him on August 28th.
One thing I have noticed during physical therapy is that certain exercises (especially those involving my upper thigh muscles are very weak.) I sometimes have what I call “shaky leg syndrome” either during physical therapy or an hour after. After I rest a while it goes away. Has anyone else noticed this. Could also be due to how long that I put off hip surgery and definitely had muscle atrophy.
Another thing I have noticed is that I still do become more fatigued quicker than I use to. This is a bit of a concern since I start back work next week.
July 31, 2008 my physical therapist is not giving me any gait training. I am also experiencing a leg length discrepancy, which is not helping. I end my 6 weeks of rehab on August 5th. I guess my thinking now is to call my surgeon and see what he would suggest and also see if I can find a therapist experienced in gait training (and, of course if my insurance will pay for this.) I am a legal secretary, so while this involves a lot of sitting, there is a lot of jumping up and down also. Am starting back just 3 days a work right now, so will see how that goes.
Unfortunately, I really don’t think my physical therapist (assistant) knows what he is doing. First, he got me all crazy regarding my leg length discrepancy (which is apparently quite common and works itself out eventually.) Then, he becomes all concerned that my legs were shaking while doing leg lifts on the machine. I too suspected this was normal due to muscle weakness and did not experience any pain. Also, not getting any gait training!
Only have two rehab sessions left than will see my surgeon on August 28th and see if he suggests further rehab.