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Author Topic: Help - I still have more questions!  (Read 1481 times)

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dimples

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Help - I still have more questions!
« on: March 18, 2008, 02:13:58 AM »
I received a call today from Dr. Gross who has informed me that I am a candidate for hip resurfacing.  This is good and bad.  My husband worries that I may be corresponding with a "quack" who approves everyone who comes to him.  Is there anyone who has been turned down by Dr. Gross or does he approve everyone?

He was very nice on the phone and patiently answered my questions.  I am not totally bone on bone but have areas that are bone on bone. I am having alot of pain with the left hip and Dr. Gross feels that I will probably have to have the right hip resurfaced too at some point.

Also, is there anyone with Cigna HMO insurance that has been approved with Dr. Gross?  If so, what was your approximate out-of-pocket cost?  The cost of this surgery may prohibit me from going out of state.  The 2 local Drs. that I have consulted with have done 5 & 15 hip resurfacing surgeries.  Does anyone recommend a Dr. in Georgia who has alot of resurfacing experience?

This website has been a tremendous help to me.  Thanks ahead of time to everyone who responds to my inquiries!

Pat Walter

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Re: Help - I still have more questions!
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2008, 03:27:44 PM »
Trust me, Dr. Gross is far from a quack!  He is one of the absolutely most exprienced hip resurfacing surgeons in the world.  Look at his stats on my website and doctor interview - he was done over 1300 hip resurfacings.

I would always choose Dr. Gross over the newer doctors having only done a few.  Hip resurfacing is a very technical and difficult surgery which requires expereince.  Experience in hip resurfacing, not THRs.  THR experience is not applicable in this case.

You can read the many medical studies I have posted about the steep learning curve. You can read Dr. Gross interview under the Doctor Interviews.  You can see many Dr. Gross Stories on the Hip Stories section.

I would have considred him, but did not have health insurance and could not afford him.  He was the only other doctor I would have considred in the US several years ago.

Yes he does turn quite a few people down.  Some have had to go to De Smet in Belgium or Bose in India, or Mont or several others to get their hip resurfacings.  He wouldn't give me a go ahead until I got a bone density test since I was older at 61.  De Smet does not require a bone density test - he can read that from the x-ray.  If you belonged to the Yahoo Surface Hippy discussion group you could search for the stories where Gross turned people down.  I believe I have a few stories up where people went to other doctors - but I can't remember off hand since I have so many stories posted.

The best thing is to ask Lee Webb or Gross's office about your insurance approval.  THey have the experience.

You won't find another doctor in the US with more experience than Gross other than I think Amstutz in CA.

Then you can go to Belgium to Dr. De Smet who has done over 3000 hip resurfacings and over 3000 thrs, or McMinn who has done over 4000 or Treacy who has done over 4000.  The overseas doctors have the experience.  The US docotors are just learning and if you don't want to be one of the possible statistics of the 4% revisions that are currently happening, you would most likely do better with an expeinced hip resurfacing surgeon. 

Dr. Rogerson in WI has done over 250 and has the same type of set up as Dr. De Smet in Belgium.  http://www.surfacehippy.info/doctorinterviews/rogersoninterview.phpHe studied his rehab and techniques.  No other US doctor doing the BHR has more experience right now.

Dr. Clarke  in NY came from overseas and I think has done over 500 http://www.surfacehippy.info/doctorinterviews/clarkeinterview.php

Check out my list for doctor stats  http://www.surfacehippy.info/listofdoctors.php

The top hip resurfacing doctors don't ever do a hip that doesn't need to be done.  I can't get my right hip done yet, because it is not bad enough.  The top doctors are very, very busy which is reflected in their waiting lists.

You are lucky that you are a candidate and that Dr. Gross will accept you.

GOod Luck and keep asking questions.

Pat
Webmaster/Owner of Surface Hippy
3/15/06 LBHR De Smet

dimples

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Re: Help - I still have more questions!
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2008, 04:32:06 PM »
Thanks again for your help Pat.  Being in chronic pain has definitely made it hard to think rationally. I have days when I feel desperate to make the pain stop.  Friends and family often do not understand - but the Surface Hippies certainly do.  This website is giving me the knowledge and reassurance to make an informed decision.  Hopefully my insurance will cooperate and relief will come soon!

Pat Walter

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Re: Help - I still have more questions!
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2008, 05:39:55 PM »
Hi

It is difficult for other people to understand the pain you experience from a bad hip.  If you havent been there and experienced it - you can't imagine it very well.

Do you have good meds from your doctor?  Many of us used Vicodene, percoset, etc etc.  Even with the good meds, I could not sleep at night. 

The best part of having surgery is waking up and not having the arthritis pain.  It is gone - period.  You will have pain from the surgery, muscle soreness and incision tenderness - but the bone on bone pain is gone.

Some people have very quick and easy recoveries and others have longer recoveries. There is no way to predict.

Dr. Gross patients normally do well since he is very expreinced.  I have a lot of detailed stories on the Hip Stories section of my website.

The 8 of us in Belgium did not use heavy pain meds after leaving the hospital.  I only used Advil.  Other people needed meds for a short time and some for weeks.  It just depends on your body and I think the surgeons surgical tecnhique. 

Keep asking questions.  We understand your pain and what you are going thru to make a decision to have your hip resurfaced.  I cancelled a THR operation and so have quite a few others to choose a different option.  Relatives don't often understand the process - we do.

Pat
Webmaster/Owner of Surface Hippy
3/15/06 LBHR De Smet

dgm

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Re: Help - I still have more questions!
« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2008, 12:05:40 PM »
Hi there,
You are wise to do your homework - it feels like such a leap of faith to do this.  And you are also correct - being in pain (and for so long) can make one irrational! 

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 itme I voluntarily walked anywhere) and have been able to go on the eliptical 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.

Don't wait - I was totally bone on bone with cysts starting to form which could have caused me not to have the BHR.  You will be so glad you did this and get your life back.

Good luck!
Denise
RBHR 2/14/08 Dr. Rogerson

dimples

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Re: Help - I still have more questions!
« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2008, 05:26:26 PM »
Thanks Denise for the encouragement.  It is great to hear from people like you who have had surgery and done well!

 

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