February 28, 2008
I finally had my hip resurfacing with Dr. Rogerson on 2-14-08 in Madison, Wisconsin. I am completely amazed at my progress each day – I have experienced nothing more that what I would call muscle discomfort in the quad but absolutely no pain at the incision site. In fact, I think my brain has been so hardwired for pain when I walk that I keep waiting for it, but it just is no longer there. I was down to one crutch in the HipHab center and am navigating well. I am absolutely thrilled with my decision to go with the BHR, even with the travel involved. Dr. Rogerson and his team provided excellent patient education before, during and after the procedure. I am already wondering why I waited so long to do this, I feel like I am going to get my life back! At 46, I am more than excited about the prospect of being pain free. My advice to anyone contemplating this procedure, do get evaluated soon. Dr. Rogerson told me that I was almost not a candidate due to a bone cyst. So don’t wait! You’ll be glad you didn’t.
March 7, 2008
I am 46/female and 3 weeks out yesterday from RBHR. I endured about 3 years of pain and an embarrassing limp and almost waited too long to be a BHR candidate because I thought I could tough it out. There is no reason, assuming your doctor says the time is right for you, to wait any longer to have this procedure – it proves nothing to wait. Three weeks post surgery, I am walking partially with a cane and going a bit without anything at all. The most amazing this is that I finally have no pain and I am so pleased. I have had a pretty easy recovery, so I feel quite fortunate. But from all of the stories I’ve read here, it is not at all unusual. Since you sound fairly active still, I would highly encourage you to do as much as you can in terms of building strength prior to surgery (I called it the crutch workout) for your upper body, it helped me tremendously. I’d also recommend doing whatever you can cardio wise, that is the least pain and okay with your doctor, too. I think it made my recovery fairly smooth and comfortable.
March 12, 2008
I am 46, had been very active – marathons, biking, etc., and had RBHR 4 weeks ago tomorrow. My scar is about 10 inches long but I am surprised how thin and nearly invisible it is already. As soon as it is completely healed, I am going to start massaging vitamin e oil or cocoa butter on it. I was alarmed when I found out how big the scar would be but I am pleasantly surprised how good it looks. But as much pain as I was in, to be honest, I didn’t really care about the scar I just wanted to be out of pain. Like you, I was really frightened prior to surgery. Despite all of the information out there, it still is surgery and the prospect can set your mind reeling. I’ve had a couple surgeries before but this was by far the easiest of all. I never experienced any real surgical pain afterwards (the most I could call it is muscle discomfort in the surgical leg) but no incision pain. I am so excited that I am out of pain now, I walked all over town yesterday afternoon and it is the first time I have been able to do that in years!
I just wanted to share my experience with Dr. Rogerson in WI. I traveled there from Montana to have RBHR on 2-14-08. The HipHab facility where you do PT (land and water based) post surgery is outstanding. Dr. Rogerson’s office does a wonderful job dealing with out-of-town patients. They also do a great job regarding patient education – they send you a binder with all the before/during and after info you could need. Dr. Rogerson was fantastic and I could not have asked for a better experience. His office is very responsive and gets answers to you right away. From start to finish, and in follow up, I could not have asked At 4 weeks post op tomorrow, I am walking without any assistance (happily pain free now!) and have had what I would consider a very easy recovery. I attribute part of it to the HipHab experience – you can read about it if you go to Dr. Rogerson on resurfacing doctors on this website and go to the Meriter Hospital link right under his name. He also moderates a message board on that site which is quite helpful. I believe that page also explains how to get an opinion if you are an out of town patient (I believe it was 2 standing pelvic xrays and a couple forms to print out and send in via FedEx) I sent mine on a Friday and heard from them the following week.
March 19, 2008
This Thursday I will be 5 weeks post surgery with Dr. Rogerson. I traveled from Montana but I was willing to go anywhere to see someone with BHR experience. I am happy to report that I am walking without crutches and have been taking long walks outside (I can’t remember the last time I voluntarily walked anywhere) and have been able to go on the elliptical trainer for 30 minutes at a time. Now I have to make myself remember that I had surgery since I have one more week of hip precautions but feel so good that I forget! I had a great experience and now I am sorry I waited so long. I’m 46, a former runner and have hobbled around for several years now – the last one was absolutely miserable. Right after surgery you can bear weight and I could tell immediately that the pain was gone. I am still blown away by it.
March 27, 2008
I am 6 weeks post op today and feel wonderful. But when I “graduated” from PT here, my therapist warned me that there will just be some things I will not be able to do anymore! I was specifically asking about getting back to yoga and that’s when his comment came up. But I thought that was the whole point of BHR vs THR – that you can return to those activities? I will say that I did BHR out of town and they aren’t common around here.
April 12, 2008
I am 8 weeks out and tried to ride the stationary bike around 5 weeks, but found it quite uncomfortable. My doctor allowed the elliptical trainer at 2 weeks, I tried it at 5 and it felt much better than the bike. The therapist said to lower the crossramp all the way and boost the resistance to 4-5 so it didn’t feel so wobbly. I didn’t use the one with the arms that moved, I felt too unstable with it. If your doctor gives the okay, it provides a good workout and has helped me regain strength in my leg.
July 11, 2008
Four months out from surgery I was riding my mountain bike pretty comfortably, mostly concerned about falling off so I was overly careful. I will be 5 months out next week and other than the scar, it’s hard to remember that I even had surgery. At this point, I can’t even remember what it was like to be in constant pain with every step – considering I was bone-on-bone for a couple years and miserable, I find that shocking. I should get my all clear next month and look very forward to gearing up for downhill ski season this year.
August 24, 2008
I am 6 months out from surgery and it is the best decision I ever made – it changed my life! I’d lost a couple years to pain and could do very little. You are wise to research your options and to ask questions on this website – it is a great resource. Everyone is somewhat partial to their surgeon here (myself included) so the best thing you can do is find one with plenty of experience that you are comfortable with. But one thing is for sure, this procedure will definitely give you back a quality of life again!
I just passed my 6 months mark and was cleared for skiing this winter. I was curious what other hippies did to get back to downhill. I have been a more cautious skier before surgery, partially because of pain. Now I’m a little scared that I will screw up my new pain free existence but can’t wait to ski again with my kids (okay, how about on the same day as my kids, I’m pretty sure I can’t keep up with them now). I’m not looking to ski double black but some nice blues would be great.
POST-OP PATIENT TESTIMONIAL: DENISE GLASER MALLOY (RT BHR 2/14/2008)
“At nearly a year and a half post-surgery, I have to tell you that I am back to all activities I had hoped to do, including biking, hiking, downhill and cross country skiing, and yoga. Although you said I could return to running, I have not. There is no pain whatsoever in my right hip. I do have an occasional sensation of “slippage” which I believe we discussed at my 6 month exam, but I don’t find it troublesome.
I wanted to express my sincere thanks to your office staff for their exceptional ability to deal with the issues of out-of-town patients. It’s unnerving to have a major surgical procedure, even more so to do it a thousand miles from home. Your staff’s kindness and professionalism was outstanding. They answered all of my questions quickly and thoroughly before and after surgery. And on the rare occasions they did not know the answer, they told me they’d find out and return my call which they promptly did every time. Please express my thanks to them. I can’t thank you enough. At 47, I feel like I have my life back and will never take walking for granted again. I am so glad I did my homework and found out about you and the BHR procedure at surfacehippy.com While it took some planning to deal with all the details and logistics of having surgery in Madison, it was 100% worth the effort. I’d do it again in a heartbeat. I also tell all of my friends with hip pain about you- I’m your Montana connection! Your kindness and compassion, not to mention your BHR expertise were simply amazing.
Please feel free to put me on your list of patients who will speak with prospective surgical candidates. I would be happy to share any information about my experience, which you may feel free to pass along to patients. It’ called One Hip Mama at http://denisegmalloy.blogspot.com/ I found reading about other’s experiences was reassuring. Perhaps my words can help someone else too. I’m a columnist for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and wrote a piece about my experience. I’ve enclosed a copy of that column as well as a picture at 4 months post-surgery back on the bike (on the bike trail in Annecy, France, no less). Thank you again for everything. I look forward to hearing from you.”
Best regards, Denise Malloy
Denise’s Original Hip Resurfacing Story
Read Denise’s Full Blog about her Hip Resurfacing-
Thursday, February 14, 2008 at 11:46PM
After all the hoopla, travel and what seemed like waiting longer than a full-term pregnancy, surgery is over. I am officially a Bionic Woman. I was scheduled first up at 7:30 on Valentine’s Day, what a way to get that little sparkly something. We’d scheduled a cab for 5:20, since the forecast was for snow (again) and apparently cab drivers in Wisconsin still find it to be a surprise in winter. Of course, they were not on time which raised the anxiety level tremendously. After several phone calls and increasing blood pressure, the cab finally arrived at 5:45. Luckily it was a fairly short trip so we made it on time at 6:00 as scheduled.
There was no waiting around as I’d experienced with my dad’s prior surgeries. Went through the check in process and they sent me up to the surgical floor where there wasn’t even the chance to sit down. They whisked me back to a private room where I answered more health questions, marked the surgical site with the doctors initials and gave a little blood just for good measure. At 7:20 they were wheeling me out of the room to the pre-surgery area. We dropped Gus off at the surgical waiting room and it just broke my heart because he looked so lost. But he was trying to stay calm on my behalf, which of course was greatly appreciated. But after 20 years together, I know that look of nervousness.
In pre-op, the anesthesiologist hooked me up to the IV, they asked my name and birthdate about 50 times. At 7:30, they were wheeling me into the OR, which didn’t look like the OR that I remembered from past surgical experiences. The room was a bustle of activity, Dr. Rogerson said hello and I tried to make a joke about the beach scene picture on the wall considering the snow outside was measured in feet. Renee, the PA, helped me scoot over onto the OR table from the gurney and that is absolutely the last thing I remember. No mask, no count backwards from ten – I was out.
When I woke up in post-op, strangely enough it was like waking up from a refreshing nap. Now when I had my emergency c-section 12 years ago, I remember being groggy for days. But not this time. In fact, I asked the nurse if they’d cancelled my surgery for some reason – had something gone wrong- because I was fairly certain I’d only been in there a few minutes. She just laughed and said surgery went great and it took 2 1/2 hours. But I just couldn’t figure out why I felt no pain.
When they took me up to the room, Gus was shocked at how alert and awake I was considering my post c-section out-of-it experience. They hooked me up to a PCA for pain management. I did use it, only because I was scared of pain (and after my 2nd c-section experience where the post-epidural line kinked and I had no pain relief whatsoever for several hours) I didn’t want to go there. But I if I had to do it again, I would definitely skip the morphine and ask for oral pain meds instead. While the morphine doesn’t have awful side effects for me (all it does it make me sleepy), I think I would have felt much more alert and been fine without it.
Since it was not a private room (with one shared TV in the middle no less), I was glad we brought a poratable DVD player. My roommate had knee surgery and felt compelled to share the details, and her displeasure with the whole experience, with anyone who would listen or had the misfortune of being within earshot. She exuded negativity that was not exactly conducive to recovery. So I was glad I had earphones, movies and my MP3 player.
They had told me that PT would start the day after surgery but that they might get me up to use the bathroom. So that evening, two assistants sat me on the edge of the bed and got ready to spin me over to the bedside potty. I was feeling fairly dizzy but they said that was normal and to just dangle my legs for a bit. When they got me up and over, I was holding onto one woman’s arm telling her not to leave me, that I was really dizzy now (the kind where things are fading to black and you are pretty sure passing out is in your near future). I don’t remember it, but my husband told me that I threw up and promptly passed out. He said they called for help and about 8 people were in there in pretty short order. All I remember is being back in the bed.
I’m so relieved this is over!
February 15, 2008
They really don’t mess around after surgery. The first PT session was held in the bed, apparently after my stellar performance with the pass-out/vomit combo. They had me sit for quite awhile on the edge of the bed and finally did get me up on the crutches to walk out into the hall and back. One small step for a bionic woman! The PT, Desiree, had told us that we’d be amazed at the difference between our am/pm PT sessions in the hospital and she was right on the money. That afternoon, the day after surgery, I walked from the PT room back to my room on crutches. Granted it was very slow and she had me on the PT leash, it was nothing short of amazing. I was also shocked that I could (and apparently should) bear weight on the surgical leg.
I’m also shocked that I am not in pain. I somehow expected the surgical site to be painful but there is just nothing. The only thing I’m experiencing, and it in no way rises to a level of pain, is what I’d call muscle discomfort in the surgical leg. When Renee came to check on me, she asked about my pain. I told her there really was no pain, but it felt like I had done a really intense leg/quad workout. She laughed and said, “You did have an intense quad workout, but we did it for you.” But it could not be classified as pain at all.
The PCA was discontinued and I went to the oral meds, which I can’t say I need all that much. One more night in the hospital and I’m moving on the HipHab!
February 16, 2008
After the hospital PT session, I was sprung! It will be nice to get back to the apartment at the rehab center where I can have a little space and privacy (and be out of a stupid hospital bed!). I guess they deem the car transfer and getting to your room enough of a workout for the day because PT starts tomorrow.
February 18, 2009
Last day at HipHab. Hard to believe it has gone so quickly.
Didn’t feel so great this morning, they warned us there would be roller coaster days and that it is perfectly normal. Not sure why I felt crummy but it was kind of disappointing since I’d felt so terrific the day before. After morning PT, I felt a lot better, guess you have to keep moving.
Desi had me walking on one crutch today which surprised me. She also showed me how to flip the crutch around to use as a cane.
I am fully bearing weight on the surgical leg and there is simply no pain. I wonder if your brain gets hardwired for it because it’s almost like my body is expecting it but it’s just not there. But the pain had been there for so long, with every single step I took, that I can’t quite process the fact that it is gone. I will never take walking for granted again!
I still have a bit of swelling, but practically no bruising at all. The ice packs definitely help keep the swelling down.
I finally got to see the incision after the swimming session – all the staples make it pretty funky looking.
Still don’t have much of an appetite but trying to eat whatever sounds good. I’m not sure if it is the meds or what but by the evening, a few bites are all I can manage.
Every little thing is such a production. From standing up to going to the bathroom, it seems to take forever and I am not one to take my time doing anything. So this is forcing me to slow down which I guess can be a good thing. Maybe it’s a lesson I can carry forward with me, but I can be a pretty slow learner when it comes to that which is good for me.
Yesterday was the first PT out of the hospital and we walked the halls, did the small exercises from our book and learned to do the steps. The steps were unnerving to say the least, I just didn’t think I could do it. But following the “up with the good, down with the bad mantra” I was able to navigate up and down. I was pretty worn out after that session and slept awhile. Naps are my new best friend.
Today, we had our first pool therapy which was beyond incredible. The range of motion you have in the water is so much greater than anything you can on land. The water is warm and comfortable, which is very soothing. A clear, waterproof dressing is applied prior to entering the pool. This also gives the added bonus of being able to shower when you get back to the room. After a few days of navy baths, the shower was absolutely glorious. Clean hair is a wonderful thing!
Of course, it is snowing outside. But it’s Wisconsin so what can you expect. It was a winter storm warning yesterday but when you don’t have to be anywhere, the snow is just fine.
The kids and my folks are doing great and surviving. Thank goodness they all have a sense of humor.
April 11, 2008
Had word from Dr. Rogerson that everything looked great and I am healing well. I had been concerned about a “thing” on the xray – it looked like a tiny ear of corn – thought it was a staple or something which kind of freaked me out – especially being so far away from the doctor’s office. But he said it was used to reattach muscle and he uses it all the time. So that was good to hear.
I can work out on the elliptical for 45 minutes to an hour now and walk outside when it is not snowing (and it still is!)
June 14, 2008
Four months post-surgery and I am back on the bike – in France! After meeting our friends in Paris, we walked miles all over the city doing the usual tourist stuff. We are staying in an apartment in Montmarte – I feel like we are having a real neighborhood experience buying fresh bread, cheese and wine each day. We then travelled by TGV down to Annecy where we are now cycling the Piste around the lake. These folks take their cycling seriously here. This is my first time back on the bike since surgery in February and I am one slow poke in comparison (probably because I am nervous about falling off or doing something really stupid). But the scenery is breathtaking and the path is paved so it is a good introduction back to the saddle. I could never have done this trip without having surgery.