I had my right hip resurfaced on Aug. 30, 2011 at age 59. I’m three weeks into it and doing ok. Dr. Pritchett used a hybrid mix of a Stryker X3 acetabular component with a BHR femoral component.10 years ago, as I walked briskly with my best friend on our daily excursion through the neighborhoods of Seattle, I began to notice that after 15 minutes of walking I began to favor my right leg and I limped a bit. It felt odd and uncomfortable. Marg said that I had a “hitch in my get along”. I was relatively young and didn’t think much of it. The discomfort came and went but as time passed it became more constant. I stopped walking and working out my lower body at the gym thinking it would pass. It didn’t.7 Years Later Fast forward 7 years later, and I’m barely able to get out of bed. The pain in my lower back is excruciating. My SI joint is locked up and I am miserable. I went to see Dr. Mary Cunningham and she did x-rays of my back and hip and put me into physical therapy. She showed me my hip x-ray and said “This is not good”. There was arthritis, a cyst, and not much cartilage left. She immediately referred me to a colleague in her office, the colleague was Dr. Pritchett.3 Years Ago 3 years ago was my first visit to Dr. Pritchett. He told me that he predicted that I’d need hip surgery within 2-5 years. My world collapsed. Later, I realized how lucky I was to have a condition that can be fixed. After two injections, a year of physical therapy, and working out at the gym I went back and he said “not yet”. I was back a year later and he said “It’s time”. By that time, I was unable to even give a small dinner party for my friends or work in my garden without being in major pain.Surgery My surgery went well. I had trouble with the pain medications and ended up staying in the hospital an extra day. Every time they tried to get me up to do physical or occupational therapy I’d become very ill and they would rush me back to bed. I’m sure I was not one of their favorite patients. I remember going home in the car with a hospital bucket in my hands and a cold wash cloth that said “hospital property” on it. I feel like that’s all I have left of the hospital experience – a $60,000 wash rag. I’ll cherish it.
September 30, 2011
If you are a small boned female as I am then metal on metal is not the best option according to my surgeon. We went with polyethelene cup and metal femoral component. He would prefer a ceramic femoral component but one is not on the market that would suit his criteria and he’d have to have on go through an extensive testing program before he’d be able to use it and then monitor outcomes. He’s worked with lots of people with small bone and I trust his judgement completely. He does not hesitate using metal on metal with men and large boned females.My friend was over yesterday and she has metal on metal and her implant has been recalled. Luckily, she is very large boned and so far at 2 years her ion levels are within acceptable levels.For us small gals (not saying you are small boned) finding a viable alternative to metal on metal is very important.
October 3, 2011
The hybrid I have and it is Stryker X3 cup and BHR metal femoral component. It is an HR. Dr. Pritchett would have preferred a ceramic femoral component to go with the poly acetabular component but that was not available. Glad to hear that they are working on it. I too wanted to have the surgery and not suffer any longer. The poly used in the Stryker is very different than that used years ago. It resides inside a metal piece that attaches to the bone and the poly can be changed out without removing the metal part. Not something I want to experience but good to know.Dr. Pritchett told me that Mr. McMinn is also using this comgination and has done about 20 for appropriate candidates. They will monitor and share outcomes and results when enough data become available.
October 18, 2011
I’m at seven weeks today and am doing really well. I’m a bit frustrated because I am only able to go up stairs with both feet on one step then both feet on the next step etc. How do I get to the point where I can climb stairs normally using only 1 foot per step? I can get my operated leg to land on the next step but that’s as far as it goes.
October 26, 2011
Today I had my 8 week checkup with Dr. Pritchett. My bone is sticking nicely to the implant. He explained that it is the acetabular cup part that needs to adhere. So, I’m pleased. I asked about taking calcium supplements and the potential for them causing excessive bone growth into the tissue. He said that he recommends not taking extra calcium supplements for the first few weeks, but since I’m not showing any signs of bone growing where it should not – I can begin taking my calcium again.Restrictions on activity – None.Next Appointment – 1 year.We chatted about many things and I have to say that I was very pleased with my checkup and so glad that I was referred to Dr. Pritchett. I really didn’t know much about HR or how to select a surgeon. I just took the referral I was given after seeing another orthopedic doc that I picked out of the phone book. Every once in a while you get Lucky!
As I’m preparing for my meeting with Dr. Pritchett on Wednesday (rechecking hip progress and xrays for back), I’m going over all the info that I have. In my surgical paperwork from Swedish Hospital I just came across a list of the items that he implanted. Among them are 2 cancellous screws Stryker brand so they must have been used on the titanium cup that houses the poly liner?We never talked about the need for screws but I have congenital hip dysplasia so I’m guessing that is why he implanted them. Anyone ever hear of screws implanted into the bone to hold the cup? So now I realize that I have a titanium cup, poly liner, and cobalt and chromium femoral ball.
December 22, 2011
Week 16. I met with my surgeon yesterday and we took x-rays of both my hip and my back. Good news – the resurfaced hip looks great. The other hip isn’t looking so good. It appears to have a cyst on it as well as some bone on bone, however, it doesn’t hurt so I’m ignoring it until it causes problems.
There is not much discussion because poly has a bad rap from old polyethylene that wore very badly years ago. I have a cross linked poly liner inside a titanium cup along with a BHR femoral metal ball and it was installed by Dr. Pritchett. He believes that most surgeons have to do what they feel is best based on their experience. He has some strong opinions based on his years of experience and it seems to go against the grain right now but he has do what he feels is best for his patients. One of his colleagues a very strong proponent of metal on metal is using this same metal/ poly liner and BHR metal femoral component combination in some small-boned women as well. So, it will be interesting to see how this whole debate plays itself out over the next few years.Dr. Pritchett doesn’t believe that many folks will quickly jump on board his bandwagon for the metal with poly acetabular cup anytime soon but he has been through so many trends and different component fads over the years and he sees it as the best option there is for small boned women at the moment. In one of our appointments he said that ideally he’d like to see a ceramic ball with the titanium/poly liner. But to make that happen would take lots of $ for testing and there is not enough support yet to move that idea forward.
January 29, 2012
Almost 5 months post op:I’m doing pretty well these days. Making lots of progress with ROM. My hip feels great. My back was doing well for a while and then yesterday – bent over to make the bed and WOW! Tweaked out again.But that’s ok. I know that it isn’t a disc and that my hip is fine. It’s just those pesky weak muscles!! Nice to know that it’s nothing to get totally discombobulated about.
March 3, 2012
6 months post op –I am so happy to be able to share finally that I am doing REALLY, really, REALLY well!! The hip is solid as a rock. My back is getting stronger and my hip and leg muscles are coming around. It’s just been extremely slow for me compared to others who seem to jump right out of the hospital bed and walk on water!! Yes, Aerial that would be you and it’s great to have such incredible success and easy recoveries stories as well as slower recoveries such as mine. We all add value with our individual experiences.I’m cutting out PT now for a while and tapering off of chiro and massage to twice per month. It feels so good to move and not worry about pulling a muscle or tweaking something or having a twinge every other day!
March 12, 2013
Checking in at 1.5 years post-op to report that my hip is doing really, really, well. It’s very strong and I’m really pleased with the outcome. I’m able to do more and more without any tinges of pain or having the muscles in my back tighten up. That has been a part of my recovery frustration.The only issue I still face is that the tendon(s) rub on the edge of the cup a bit and can cause irritation if I overdo it. Dr. Pritchett. says that it will resolve by the end of the second year. It definitely is getting less and less.