About 3 years ago I started to notice range of motion issues; I couldn’t sit Indian style, hard to put my left sock on and I had some pain while walking. I attributed it to my upcoming 40th birthday. It took awhile but I came to find out that I had osteoarthritis in my left hip. About 9 months ago, in March, I knew something had to be done. I have 2 young boys that I wanted to be active with and the pain and lack of flexibility was really starting to interfere with my life.
I was really reserved to get a THR at my age, then 41. I met with a doctor in Toledo, 30 miles from my home. He introduced me to the BHR. I was very excited and made an appointment to have surgery done by him in May. However, after the appointment, I got skeptical of the doctor’s experience. He had only performed 9 of these surgeries, none of them on women. I realize a doctor has to get experience somewhere. I just didn’t want to be the one.
So I researched through the internet and networked with people and Dr. Brooks, from the Cleveland Clinic, kept surfacing. I canceled my surgery in Toledo and drove a little further to meet with Dr. Brooks in June. I was instantly reassured by his knowledge and confidence. He and his Physician Assistant, Phillip Golnick, were so kind and didn’t rush us through our questions.
The first available date to have surgery was September 26, 2008. The surgery was performed at Euclid Hospital, a branch of the Cleveland Clinic. I felt great in recovery. Then when I got to my room the anesthesia wore off and the pain began. It wasn’t too bad. I was very sleepy during my 4 nights in the hospital and my first days home. I was more “out of it” and dependent on my husband and others the first 2-3 days home than I thought I would be.
I was taught how to use 2 crutches. Dr. Brooks requires that you use crutches for 6 weeks (I used a walker sometimes the first 2 weeks) so that you’re operated leg only bears 75% of your weight. It’s inconvenient to try and carry things but other than that I’m getting used to it. The pain is minimal now, there’s some bruising/tenderness. I got my staples out 10 days after the surgery and had an ultrasound to confirm there were no blood clots. (I had to have my husband give me Lovenex shots in my stomach twice a day for 2 weeks to reduce the chance of blood clots. Now I have to take an aspirin twice a day for the next month). I do have formal PT. I am to do certain exercises at home on my own.
At this point this is where my story ends. It’s been 2 1/2 weeks since surgery. I go back to meet with Dr. Brooks 4 weeks from today. I’m hoping to be crutch free and have the OK to drive after that appointment. I’m planning on returning to my job as a teacher shortly after that. I’m suppose to take it easy for a year (no running or jumping) but on September 26, 2009 there are no restrictions and I am free to live my normal life again. I can’t wait!