I am a 56 year old male athlete, who is three weeks post resurfacing with Dr Gross. Despite 10 years of discomfort and loss of ROM, I was able to stay very active. A month before my surgery, I tried a stem cell injection treatment that was a disaster, and left me with severe pains, and unable to get around without crutches or a cane. My concern is that ever since the day after surgery, I have had a new, fairly severe, pain in the area on the outside of the greater trochanter, whenever I walk, or flex my leg past about 45 degrees.
It feels as though it is related to muscles or tendons moving over and across the trochanter. Sometimes there is a popping or clicking feeling that goes along with this. The first few days I accepted this as normal, but after three weeks, it has not changed much if at all.
I do the minimal home exercises that the Doctor prescribes a couple of times a day, and go for a 3/4 mile walk every morning and evening. Most of the rest of the day is spent resting. I am comfortable using either one crutch or two, but the pain and accompanying weakness are making it impossible to get rid of any crutches at three weeks as I had hoped.
Has anyone had experience in overcoming this? I cannot decide if I am doing too much, too little, or whether I just need to give this more time. The tough part is that it has not changed much since the day I left the hospital.
July 19, 2008
I am a full time (800+ hours per year) higher end ski instructor that had my left hip resurfaced 4 weeks ago by Dr. Gross, and based on his recommendation, plan on getting back on skis at six months out. More importantly, I based my decision to proceed with the surgery in part due to observing one of my ski students this past winter. He is a very advanced skier, and we resumed his once a week lesson schedule when he was six months out. He skied all slopes in all conditions, including black diamond runs with deep chopped snow over moguls. No problems, including laying higher speed arcs on the groomed. He is skiing better than before, but still dealing with hip angulation issues from the old arthritis. Based on range of motion, I expect this to improve as well. Bottom line; a 60 year old advanced skier was able to return to skiing all slopes, in all conditions, at all speeds, at 6+ months after resurfacing.
July 25, 2008
today, at 5 1/2 weeks was my first day being able to do a reasonable walk without crutches or cane. Later than most other people, but half a mile at a normal pace, without a noticeable limp. Pain is improving, but still some discomfort when not using a cane. Less limp, but more discomfort than prior to surgery;
slowly getting better. I think that getting in the pool every day must be helping.
July 29, 2008
Just had my “long distance” six week check up with Dr. Gross by x-ray and PT report. Everything looks good, I am released from restrictions, and on to more aggressive rehab. I wanted to update my earlier “walking pain” thread. Things are going much better every day. I have been doing 45 minutes per day in the pool, which is great. Yesterday I started on the stationary bike, and was delighted; easy to get the pace and heart rate up, and no discomfort at all. I have finally turned the corner on the trochanter pain that had been haunting my walks. I still limp around the house, but once I am moving outside, I can get a 1/2 to 3/4 mile walk in that is relatively pain and limp free. I realize that I am behind the curve as far as walking distance at this point, but shortening the walks was one of the big keys in getting rid of the trochanter pain. I was doing 3/4 mile walks with crutches or cane a few days after surgery, and I think in retrospect, that it was too much for me at that time, and I paid for it. I take one tylenol PM at night because of sleep problems, but that’s it, and things are definitely progressing every day.
August 27, 2008
Right around three weeks, I thought that I might be getting bursitis on both sides I was trying to do a lot of walking, and both hips were complaining. At six weeks, i was able to weight bear more equally on both legs, and the pain on the side of the hips went away almost overnight. No problems like that since.
October 23, 2008
At four months, I am delighted with the progress, but am still having one problem that I am wondering if anyone can provide any insights about.
I am at the point where I can sleep comfortably on either side, until about 4:00 AM, at which point I am awakened every night by pain in the muscles around the surgery site. It does not matter which side I go to, the pain slowly increases to a burning pain. If I turn over onto my back, I can very slowly straighten my leg, and immediately feel spasms start to release. In under a minute the pain is completely gone, until I roll to either side, and the pain starts to gradually build again. If I get up and walk around, for a few minutes, it increases the time on my side before the pain starts up again. Since I cannot really sleep on my back; once this cycle starts, I am too uncomfortable to get any more sleep that night. Luckily, it usually does not start up until 3 or 4, but it is happening every night.
I have nothing like this during the day, and am being pretty active every day; walking a couple miles twice a day, swimming laps, stretching, going to the gym for bike/ stairmaster/ light weights/ rowing machine, and have just started back into surf kayaking. None of this fires up the pain like I am getting part way through every night.
I should mention that I do have a bad back, and odds are 50/50 whether this is coming from my back or the hip, but it is right over the surgery site. I did have a occasional episodes like this before the surgery, but this is now happening every night.
December 4, 2008
I can share my own experience at 5 1/2 months, which seems to fit with what I was told to expect. I am not a naturally flexible person, but did do a lot of stretching as part of martial arts training when I was younger (interestingly, Dr. Gross suggested a possible link between the years of trying to push my range of motion beyond its “natural” limits, and my later joint problems). Due to back surgery, and the hip problems, I have become very tight over the past 10-20 years.
After the surgery, I see my flexibility changes as being in two definite categories. It has been many years since I have been able to stand up straight, or walk without a noticeable limp. By the time that I was six-eight weeks out, this had totally changed, and I can now easily stand up straight, and after a 50 yard “warm-up”, I can hike at a strong pace for hours with no limp. I also notice that the impingement from the former bone spurs around the joint is gone, allowing much less pain when trying to stretch into flexion. All good news.
On the other side, because of my age (57), and the number of years that the joint stiffened up, their has not been much change in my overall hip flexibility. I could struggle to put on socks before, and the struggle at this point is about the same. I hold hope that because of no longer having the bone spurs causing mechanical impingement, or the inflammation causing the chronic contracture, there is now the possibility of increasing my range of motion, but this will be through returning to a long term more intense stretching program, rather than as a direct result of the surgery.
As I was told before the surgery; the surgery can get rid of mechanical impingement, but the longer the soft tissue has had to stiffen up, the less direct change it will see after the surgery in terms of ROM.
December 16, 2008
I got back on my skis last week , cheating a little at one week short of the six months that my Doctor recommended. So far, I am pretty happy with how it is going. As a little background, I am a pretty serious ski addict, having grown up racing, won a few titles in moguls and aerials, and have been teaching for 38 years averaging 800 hours a year (I wonder why my hip wore out
). My situation was maybe a little unusual in that I have not been able to stand up straight, walk without a severe limp, or move my hip very far in any direction without pain, for many years
; but I have still been able to ski at a fairly high level, with some compensations. My initial recovery from surgery was very slow and uncomfortable (six weeks on crutches), I think due in large part to a failed alternative treatment from another doctor that I tried before I committed to the resurfacing.
For my first day back on skis, I had promised myself, and my wife, that I would start on the beginner chair
. The first few turns were very weak and tentative, but after a few runs, things started to feel okay. Since it was a perfect powder morning, my will-power broke down after three runs on the beginner chair, and we headed for the top. By the end of the first day, we had skied everything from steep powder runs, to high speed carving on the groomers.
After a week on skis, here is what I have learned so far. The muscles that were cut during surgery are still pretty weak, and get sore whenever the G forces get very large, like in carving race turns. Any impacts, like hitting a set-up pile in chopped powder, causes pain. I have been dealing with that impact pain for well over 10 years, and it is just slightly worse than before. My ROM is coming back very slowly, but I think that the positive effects are starting to slightly show up on skis. Those first few days, the skiing was so great that I was pushing it hard for six+ hours a day, and was a little sore afterwards, and at night. I have cut back to about four hours a day, and feel fine afterwards, maybe a little stiff.
I started back teaching today with some of my stronger students, and am pretty confident that I will be back to where I was before surgery, skiing-wise, within another month or two. (Things like walking and being able to stand up straight, are already going great). After that, I hope to be able to continue to improve, and get rid of some of the compensations that I have been making for years.
I guess that the message in all this, is that even if you are having a slow and painful recovery, like I did for the first couple of months, skiing can be in your future before you know it .
January 1, 2009
At six months, I am pushing my new hip fairly hard. I am skiing hard 6 to 8 hours every day, in conditions ranging from hard pack, to powder, to chopped crud, to small moguls. If conditions are relatively smooth, I am very happy with the way the hip is performing, since I do have increased range of motion in it. It is definitely sensitive and sore with any bouncing or impact, and I am much more tentative and careful in bumps or rough snow than I have ever been before. Considering how things are continuing to improve, I am optimistic that this will go away over the next six months. If it does not improve, the final judgement will be tough for me; weighing the huge improvements in walking (pain free with no limp for the first time in over 10 years), standing (I can stand up straight for the first time in over ten years), biking (my leg no longer kicks out to the side with every spin), ROM (I can now tie my shoes without grunts and strain), etc, versus any compromise to my skiing, which is more important to me than all the rest. Since I am still seeing regular progress, I have high hopes that the compromises in skiing will go away with time.
On other “pushing it” fronts; at just prior to six months, I was jogging up mountain trails every day (not down because of impact), and that felt great. Pushing it hard on the bike felt great, unless I did not shift down enough on hills, which was just some muscle soreness.
As far as changing anything, I could not be happier with my doctor (Gross) and that whole experience. First class people, and a first rate surgery. I tried a stem cell injection therapy with a different doctor before I committed to surgery, and I do regret that. It lead to weeks of pain, and left me so crippled that I could not even swim in the pool, since any movement of my leg was excruciating. It also really hurt my first weeks of recovery, since I had been living on crutches for almost two months between the stem cell injection, and the resurfacing surgery.
May 22, 2009
I had my surgery with Dr. Gross on June 16 of last year. I think the world of Dr Gross, Lee Webb, and the rest of the team. He is very bright, very caring, and constantly searching for ways to make the procedure, and the experience for his patients, better and better.
Here is a short version of my own experience.
1. At my first appointment about eight months before surgery, Dr. Gross spent an incredible amount of sincere and thorough time helping me to consider whether there were options other than resurfacing that I should consider; and then, after sending me across the street for a CT scan, he met with me again after office hours to go over the scans, and confirm that resurfacing was my only viable option.
2. Prior to surgery, his assistant, Lee Webb, provided the best personal and emotional support that I have ever witnessed in the medical field.
3. The experience in the hospital was comfortable, virtually painless, and very well orchestrated by great people.
4. My first month at home was more difficult and painful than most, I believe due to a failed stem cell treatment that had been performed by another doctor (against Dr. Gross’s advice), that left me on crutches and in serious pain for almost two months prior to my resurfacing.
5. At five weeks, I was starting to get off crutches and canes, and the clunking sensations in the hip were starting to go away; starting to walk normally at six weeks with my old limp going away; and long hikes, with lots of gym work at 8 weeks. So I believe that you will be dancing.
6. I started skiing hard every day at six months, and am now windsurfing and surfing every day; so I would have to say that it is successful.
In answer to your questions; I did have a lot of disturbing clunking and clicking that made me aware of the metal over the first month, but that has gradually gone away over time, and is no longer an issue; I still have some weakness and soreness in the soft tissue, which continues to improve; yes I can run without pain in my hip, but the rest of my body would rather I didn’t; every athlete my age (58) wakes up stiff and sore in the morning, but my hip is not an issue there; since I can now stand up straight for the first time in a dozen years, standing all day is not an issue; I trust my hip to do anything that the rest of my body can do, including steps and stairs, jumping out of a helicopter into deep powder snow, and jumping my windsurfer over 10 foot waves; lastly, I have many friends and clients that are surgeons, I have consulted with many others, and I would absolutely recommend Dr. Gross in the highest possible way.
June 18, 2009
Well, here I am with the one year report. Bottom line; things are pretty good, with a high level of activity; however there are a lot more aches and pains around the surgery site than I had hoped for at one year.
Quick review: I had a very positive and comfortable experience with the surgery. I had a slow and painful next five weeks, but after that things progressed well, with pool and gym work for a couple of hours a day. At five months, I was doing mountain hikes with some trail jogging for 3-4 hours a day, along with some biking. At six months, I started skiing hard for eight hours every day through the winter. A month ago, I started my daily summer schedule of waveskiing (cross between surfing and kayaking) for three hours in the mornings, and high wind windsurfing in the afternoons every day. When I started my summer schedule, I started having a lot of sharp pain around the greater trochanter (this was also my problem during those first few weeks after surgery), which was diagnosed as trochanteric bursitis. They put me back on Celebrex, which has calmed that down.
At one year, I am certainly much better off functionally than before surgery; limp is mostly gone. I am definitely not one of those people that can say that they are pain free, or no longer aware of their hip. Walking and climbing stairs still involve lots of little aches and twinges, and has been slow to improve since the six month point. I am not a flexible person, but that continues to improve, so that it is as good or better than my normal hip. I am still working on getting back to full strength in the new hip, and continue to see improvement. I am still optimistic that this soft tissue pain will go away over the next year.
So, that’s my story at the end of the first year. I will check in again next year, or if there are any major changes.
October 21, 2009
At about 16 months post resurfacing, I decided to get back into playing tennis, after ten years off due to my hip. The reasons for giving up tennis ten years ago were numerous; I could hardly tie my tennis shoes on, I could barely bend down enough to pick up a ball, running after a shot was more of a hopping limp, and if I dove for a shot on my bad hip, there was excruciating pain.
I should preface this by saying that I am not one of those people that is going around pain free. I think that the joint is good, but I do have lots of little soft tissue pains off and on since surgery; bursitis, tendinitis, etc. Having said that, tennis does not appear to be one of the things that makes them any worse, and maybe even a little better. In the “after picture”; I can easily tie my shoes, picking balls up off the court is easy (I make myself bend over and do this to keep the flexibility up), I don’t limp when I run for the ball, I do not have pain if I dive for the ball, but I am definitely very cautious about how much I am willing to dive for a shot. I was never really a competitive player, and always preferred long rallies to games. I am now able to get back to this very enjoyably. If I were playing games, singles would be challenging due to my reluctance to make diving lunges for shots, so doubles would make more sense.
Bottom line; resurfacing has brought enjoyable recreational tennis back into my life.
January 14, 2010
I am back in Sun Valley teaching eight hours a day in all conditions. In mid-December we took our annual vacation up to Mike Weigele’s Helicopter Skiing operation up in British Columbia. Last year was the first year that I missed that trip in 15 years, since it was only four months after my surgery. The conditions this year were fantastic, with a few days of over-the-head powder. No problems with taking the occasional drops that are so common and so fun in the steep tree runs up there. The main residual that I feel from the resurfacing is when I am skating on my skis; I still feel twinges in the soft tissue. I am still a little uncomfortable with icy bumps or crossing chatter marks when running gates, but will grudgingly ski them when needed. At a year and a half, I am not one of those people who can say that they are unaware of their new hip, since I still think about it much of the time, but I can say that I am very happy with how it is performing in allowing me to ski very aggressively.
A happy hippy winter to all!
July 30, 2010
I just received my two year report back from Dr. Gross, and thought that I would take a moment to share where I am at 2 years post surgery, at the age of 58. I am just going to list some thoughts, in no particular order.
Bottom line is that I am extremely happy with the result at this point.
Dr. Gross says that the 2 year X-rays look perfect. It is worth mentioning that because I had waited so long to have the surgery, I had worn my socket deeper than normal. Since Dr. Gross wanted to be sure that my leg length came out normal when he placed the cup, there was a small hollow area behind the acetabular cup. Dr. Gross told me that this would fill in with bone by two years. You can see in the recent X-rays that he was correct once again.
A recent metal ion test showed that my Chromium levels are within the normal range for the overall population, and low for having a metal on metal joint.
Walking and daily activities are generally pain and limp free, though I still get occasional twinges and very subtle clunks. I can run, but prefer not to on flats or pavement. Instead I will train running stairs, or up dirt trails.
My range of motion is back to what is normal for me, but I am not naturally very limber.
Skiing hard for eight hours, seven days a week, for five straight months during the winter, in all conditions, is great. My only self restrictions are avoiding icy bumps, and no big air unless the landing is really soft. Skating on skis still causes some twinges in the soft tissue.
Windsurfing in high winds and surf every day during the summer is fine, though I have found that I have a couple of weeks of soft tissue soreness at the start of each season so far. Waveskiing (think of a hybrid between a small kayak and a short surfboard) is no problem, though the “hip flick” in my eskimo rolls was a little weak for the first year.
I have gotten back into tennis after a twenty year layoff due to my bad hip. It is going great, and seems to be about the best therapy that I have found. All of the quick turns and directional changes are great for tightening and strengthening all of the small muscles that are cut or affected during the surgery.
I still have some nighttime issues that have not improved much. I sleep fine for the first part of the night, but every night at about 3 or 4 AM, I start getting discomfort and small spasms in the scar area. When I roll onto by back, everything is fine in a few seconds, but when I roll back onto my side to get back to sleep, I only get a few minutes before it wakes me up and I need to roll onto my back again. This has improved a little in the last year, but not a lot.
I would have to say that overall, I still see continued small improvements after two years, which is very positive.
For anyone who is having a slow recovery during the first month or so, I would offer much encouragement, since I was a slow recovery case for the first six weeks, but have been very happy with the process after that point. (I believe that the initial slow recovery was due to a failed treatment that I had tried with another doctor before going to Dr. Gross.)
I will be forever grateful to Dr. Gross and Lee Webb for their superb skills, and dedicated caring attitudes.
At the two year mark, you can rate me as a very happy surface hippy.
January 15, 2011
Yeah, at 2 1/2 years I still have occasional soreness. I am confident that the hip is solid, as confirmed by x-rays and metal ion blood test. Never the less, our hips have been dislocated in surgery, numerous muscles and fascial layers cut, and metal hammered into bone. If someone experienced a war wound or car accident of that severity, they would expect to have some long term side affects. My new hip allows me to walk pain free; and to ski, surf, windsurf, play tennis, and pretty much everything that I want to do at a fairly high level. Therefore I do not begrudge the fact that it still has occasional soreness and twinges, and every once in while a little bout of bursitis that I treat with anti-inflamatories. I am very happy with the procedure, and feel that my hip still continues to improve at this point in time. I think that, for many of us, it may be unrealistic to undergo this much trauma, and not expect some twinges or soreness for quite awhile when it is pushed, as would be the case with most major traumas. I still feel that it is a great procedure for those of us whose hips were badly affecting our lives. and am very grateful for what it has done for me.
June 2, 2011
I am coming up on my three year anniversary, and thought that I would post a somewhat detailed update. For the old timers on this site, you can fast forward through this since it is all old news, but for the new people who are interested in how a new hip holds up in an old (60) active body, read on.
I have spent my winters skiing since I was very young. Grew up ski racing, went on to compete in freestyle moguls and aerials, appeared in some films jumping cliffs etc, and have been teaching high level skiing full time (8 hours a day, seven days a week) up to the present.
I have been teaching high wind windsurfing in Hawaii for the past 28 summers. Summer mornings are spent surfing on a waveski, or playing tennis.
Back in my twenties and thirties, I earned my black belt in three similar styles of Karate. Dr. Gross thinks that the extreme stretching that I did back then may have been a leading contributor to my hip issues. (Of course a few motorcycle crashes and innumerable high speed ski crashes may have had something to do with it as well )
By my mid thirties, I had to give up Karate. By forty, I had to give up tennis. By 45 I had to give up surfing , and walked with a very painful and noticeable limp. I could not come close to straightening my hip out, and had pain 24/7 . Still teaching skiing and windsurfing full time.
When I was about 50, I had arthroscopy on my hip to clean up a torn labrum and some crushed cartilage. This yielded about a 20% improvement for a few years.
Three years ago, just before I turned 57, I tried a stem cell injection treatment that was a disaster. Afterwards, I could not get around without crutches or a cane, and could not even swim in a pool.
A few months later, I had my left hip resurfaced by Dr. Gross who I think is fantastic; cementless with a 39% cup angle. At the time he said that the X-rays of the right one did not look so good either, but I had never had any problems with it, so we left it alone.
My right hip has started to go bad over the past year, so I think that another resurfacing in coming up in the next year or so.
Current state of my resurfaced hip:
I continue to think of my resurfaced hip as being a big success. I am not one of those people who says that they never feel it, but it does allow me to do a lot of things that I could not do before, and the serious pain is gone.
I walk pain and limp free, except after unusually intense athletics. At these times, the soft tissue reminds me that it has been through some serious trauma, and gets kind of achy, but no sharp pains. Going for a 30 minute walk afterwards often makes things feel better.
Hiking and light jogging on mountain trails is great.
I do a lot of stairs; both for conditioning, and because we live up six flights during the summer. I can still sometimes feel the surgery site when walking up stairs. When I do running laps up and down the six flights for conditioning, I do not notice it as much.
Skiing continues to improve each year after the surgery, with no problems with the new hip. Heli-skiing every year, but I do avoid icy bumps now due to all of my joints.
Windsurfing gets better each year also, with the only issue being the pounding the joints take when flying across choppy water at 30mph+. Sometimes both hips are a little stiff and sore afterwards.
I got back into tennis last year, after a twenty year layoff. It feels good, but both hips get sore after about 2 hours.
Bike riding is not a problem, though I still feel the surgery site sometimes on steep uphill climbs.
Motorcycle riding is not a problem, though my other hip gets very sore and achy after awhile.
I had a lot of “clunking” in the first few weeks and months after surgery. It progressively went away over the first year or so, and is now gone.
I had a few bouts of trochanteric bursitis during the first year or two, but that also seems to be pretty much gone now.
Long car rides were still not that fun at one or two years, but was not a problem this year.
One thing that has not changed since surgery, is that my hip is my alarm clock. It still wakes me up a few times in the early morning hours, and gets sore enough every morning to motivate me to get up and moving, which always makes it feel better.
Overall, I would say that this year compared to last year, both of my hips get a little more sore and achy after intense sports. However, this is also true of every other part of my body , so it is hard to fault the resurfacing.
I had my serum Chromium levels checked last year, and it came out at 1.3 which I am very happy with.
So after three years, would I recommend a resurfacing to someone who needs it; absolutely, I recommend it all the time.
Am I in a hurry to get my other one done. Not really, because at least for me, my experience tells me that after the surgery, the joint is not quite as good as new, and there may be minor issues to deal with fairly permanently, especially if you really push it. Dr Gross said that though it is bone on bone, I can wait another year or so, and still be a good candidate. Therefore, I am waiting until my right hip gets noticeably worse on average than my resurfaced hip, before I have it done.
So there you have it; a hopefully balanced three year report from another happy hippy.
September 17, 2012
Last year was my fourth year back, and I am delighted to say that the new hip is pain free. My only hang up is that I am still psychologically uncomfortable with any hard impacts, like accidentally landing a jump on the flats or on icy bumps. Unfortunately my other hip is starting to act up. It is still the stronger of the two muscle-wise, but is starting to be painful and lose range of motion.
I think that you will be very excited about how you will be able to enjoy skiing again. I also think that you are very wise to start of on some easy groomed slopes, and build your strength and confidence back. Strangely enough, I think that the stronger a skier that you are (i.e. lots of hip angulation and counter, with lots of g forces building up in carved turns), the longer it takes to feel 100% again. High speed runs through big bumps involving lots of impact may or may not be a good idea. Though I used to make a living doing it, I do not see myself doing that again. I still ski bumps, just much more slowly and smoothly. I save the speed for groomers and crud.
May 24, 2013
Yes, this has been one of the hardest things for me to get back, and I am still working at doing exercises for it at five years out. I can ski hard all day, play tennis for hours, and do twenty minutes of sprinting up and down 6 flights of stairs, but pressing up from a deep squat is one that has been challenging for me. I don’t notice it in any other activity, but in deep one legged squats, my operated leg is still only about 70% of my other leg.
July 25, 2013
Just checking in with a happy five year anniversary. For those that are considering resurfacing, or are early in the process, I will give a synopsis of my resurfacing journey. For you that are regulars on the site, you’ve heard it all before, so you should feel free to happily skip on to the next post.
Over ten years of suffering with arthritis that kept getting worse, resulting in pain with any movement at all, a sever limp, and crippling pain with certain movements.
Tried an arthroscopy, which made it worse for a few months, and then maybe a 20% improvement for a couple of years.
Next tried a stem cell injection which was a disaster, but it did help me make the final decision for a resurfacing because I could not now get around without a cane or crutches.
Surgery with Dr Gross at age 57. Surgery and time in the hospital were a breeze, and almost painless.
The next six weeks were a roller-coaster of mild to moderate pain, swelling, difficulty getting around, slow and uneven progress, and lots of mental gyrations. Finally off crutches at six weeks.
At 8 weeks I started a remodel on the house, being careful not to break any rules.
At 3 months I started slightly more intense training.
At 6 months I started skiing full time (eight hours, seven days a week).
At 1 year I got back into full time windsurfing (high winds and surf).
At 1 year I got back into daily tennis which I had not been able to play in ten years.
Between years 2 and 3 most of the residual aches and pains went away.
At 5 years (I will be 62 in a month) I am active in some kind of sport for 6-8 hours a day, 6-7 days a week, and my hip feels great.
My metal ion numbers have always been low (.5 to 1.4).
The best of it: I never even think about my resurfaced hip when I am involved in my sports. I never have any pain in that hip.
The worst of it: Nothing really. No matter what I do, I cannot seem to get the resurfaced leg to be quite as strong as the other leg, and deep one legged squats still involve some strange sensations. When I am sitting, it sometimes still feels like there is something swollen in the area, either scar tissue or some fluid. Like the rest of me, it is stiff for the first few steps whenever I first get up out of a car or a chair. All in all, nothing to complain about.
There’s my story up to five years. As we all say on this site, everyone’s journey will be different. In my case it has worked out fantastically to this point.
I want to finish by saying a huge thank you to Pat for this site.
May 11, 2015
I had the posterior approach about 7 years ago, and have experienced three distinctly different sensations, any of which I think people sometimes refer to as clunking.
The first couple of weeks after surgery, there was often a very distinct deep clunk, which I am quite sure was the two metal surfaces separating slightly and then recontacting. This was attributed by my surgeon to the soft tissue not being strong or toned enough to keep the surfaces in constant contact. This was mostly in the first week or two, and went away after the first couple of months.
The second is a subtle slipping of the two surfaces against each other. In this case the two surfaces remain in solid contact, but because the prostheses have a “polar” contact as opposed to a surrounding connection, that polar contact point will sometimes slip a fraction of a millimeter which is like an extremely subtle clunking. This still happens rarely, and is not at all a problem.
The third sensation is not what I think of as a clunk, but I know some people call it that. This is when I feel soft tissue bands (tendons or muscles) sliding or snapping across each other, or other structures. This is something that I continue to experience on a regular basis when doing deep lunges or deep squats, and is definitely uncomfortable. Since this sensation does not have a metallic connection involved, I don’t think of it as a clunk, but it is the one “shifting” sensation that has not changed with time.
In my mind, this third one is definitely related to the posterior approach, since the soft tissue where I feel the shifting is definitely in the surgical plane deep under the external scar.
October 31, 2015
I am six years out, and very happy with the results. However, I continue to have some weakness on that side, particularly in the glutes, with some minor discomfort if I focus on them in doing something like one legged squats. For example, if I do one legged squats or step ups with hand weights where I could do 20 reps on my non-surgery side, I can usually only do 12 or 15 on the resurfaced side with lots of sensations around the glutes. I am not aware of this affecting me during most activities, but it is evident in the gym.
July 22, 2016
I had my hip resurfaced 8 years ago, and ski hard on it in all conditions. I also have a few friends and students who ski hard on resurfaced hips, and all seem to be doing well.