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Author Topic: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker  (Read 2636 times)

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Sean

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Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« on: April 03, 2008, 10:42:05 PM »

Hallo,

I'm a Newbie here and let me just say right off the bat how much this site has helped me in my research on resurfacing and my decision to finally go ahead with it.  Thank you!

I am 42 yrs old and was diagnosed with coxarthrose in both hips in 2003.  I've been an athlete my whole life.  Played varsity baseball in high school, moved on to competitive martial arts and ended up being a professional ballet dancer in the U.S. and over here in Germany.  I quit my professional dancing career in 2001, in part because of the pain in one of my hips, but have continued to teach taijiquan and kung fu in my martial arts school. 

Well, let's just say that in the last five years I've noticed my ROM steadily decrease, especially in the left hip, and the pain steadily increase.  I've been limping around for years now, and couldn't run to catch a bus if I had to!  I don't demonstrate any kicking techniques anymore in kung fu class, and even teaching taijiquan is painful.  I realize that if things keep getting worse at this pace I will have to give up teaching martial arts in a couple of years.  Athleticism was always so second nature to me, and to see myself deteriorating like this at such a young age has been really depressing. 

Reading about other athletes with the same problem who have had resurfacing and have been able to continue with their activities, sometimes even continuing to compete, really encouraged me to go again to the doctor and see if I was a candidate for resurfacing.  First I went and had some new x-rays done, and they showed that it's a bone on bone situation in both hips, although the left hip is much more painful with significantly less ROM than the right hip.  After looking into several clinics I decided to go to the DRK (German Red Cross) clinic in Berlin, where Doctor Faensen heads up the team in the Zentrum für Oberflächenersatz am Hüftgelenk  .  Last month I met with Doctor Völker (the doctor who would perform the surgery),  and after checking me and my x-rays out he said that I was pretty much a perfect candidate for resurfacing. 

Anyway, now I've got surgery scheduled for May 5th.  I'm really happy about the possibility of returning to teaching martial arts without pain, but I'm also starting to get a little nervous about the actual surgery.  This would be the first major surgery in my life, and I just can't help thinking "what if something were to go wrong?!"  I am doing my best to stay positive, however, and am really ready to lead a new, pain-free life after resurfacing.  And am ready to get back to teaching and training martial arts!  I hope that my expectations are not too high.

Well, it's late over here and I have to get up early tomorrow and limp over to teach a morning taijiquan class!

Cheers,
Sean


Pat Walter

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2008, 01:05:00 AM »
Hi Sean

Welcome to Hip Talk.

I am glad that the website has been a help to you.  Hopefully, as you surgery approaches, we can offer support and answers to any questions you might have.

As you have probably seen, many ahtletes have been able to return to their sport.  Hopefully, you too will be able to do what you want.  There have been ballet dancers return to dancing after both hip resurfacing and MOM thrs.  I hope that you will be able to if that is what you wish.

I had never been in a hospital for any surgery until I was 61 in 2006 when I had my hip resurfacing done.  I went to Dr. De Smet in Belgium to have my hip resurfaced.  I live in Ohio in the USA and just loved Belgium.  It was a wonderful experience getting a new hip and visiting Belgium.  I was only in the hospital for 2 1/2 days, then I was able to stay at the Holiday in for 9 more days during recovery.  I had a wonderful time.

Please stay in touch with us.  We will answer any questions that you have, if we can.

I assume you saw the many athletes stories here  http://www.surfacehippy.info/athletes.php

I hope after surgery, you will write a story for the website.  I would love to have some photos of videos of you back in action in the martial arts too when you recover. Each persons recovery is different, but we all end up in the same place in the end - doing what we love without pain.

I wish you the best of luck.

Pat

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

Sean

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2008, 10:24:15 AM »

Hi Pat,

Thanks for your reply and your words of encouragement!  I'll definately keep you up-dated on how the surgery and recovery go, and I plan on making some "before and after" videos of me doing some taijiquan. 

As a side note I saw William Starrett's resurfacing story on the Dancerhips site, and realized that I had actually danced as a guest in his company for a production back in the early 90's!  Quite a few of us dancers have destroyed our bodies and have needed hip or knee replacements (and sometimes both).  Unlike Starrett, however, I have decided to give up dancing for good.  I think my body is better off with taiji!

Cheers,

Sean

Pat Walter

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2008, 11:22:37 AM »
Hi Sean

That must have been very exciting to have danced with William Starrett.  You must have been very good!

I look forward to seeing your videos when you are back to taijiquan after your recovery. 

So many of us have beat up our bodies with the sports and activities that we love - but I guess that's what life is for.  Fortunately, for us there are fancy new hips!

Good Luck.

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

Sean

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2008, 03:24:21 PM »

Quick update:

My surgery has been re-scheduled for next Thursday, April 25th!!  My head is spinning trying to get everything organized; buying the necessary post-op equipment and organizing physical therapy.  I'm a little stressed and am also feeling a little under the weather (sore throat, runny nose)...I hope this doesn't influence the surgery.  I suppose that if my cold gets worse I'll have my surgery date re-scheduled once again! 

I guess I'll be writing my surgery report sooner than expected!

Cheers,
Sean

Lisa

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2008, 02:28:45 AM »
Sean - I hope your surgery goes well. I can understand your desire to get back to all of your activities. I have been a fitness instructor and trainer for 29 years. During the 10 years of my progressively worsening left hip, I continued to teach and train as much as possible. After my hip resurfacing last May 14 in Madison, WI with Dr. Rogerson, I am now able to do almost all of the things I could do before. (I say almost because there are a few permanent restrictions for all, and also that it is taking a while to regain some of the mobility in the hip joints and muscles after all those years). But overall, you will be thrilled at what you're able to do. But remember that recovery takes time, so don't be tempted to push yourself too hard. You will be able to do all of those things you enjoy, but not right away (active people are sometimes impatient when it comes to resting and recuperating!). Good luck!

Sean

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2008, 05:31:47 PM »
So, here is my update:

I just got back home from the hospital in Berlin yesterday!  I'm 8 days post OP.  The OP went really well.  I wasn't at all that nervous before the procedure, just a little worried because I was sick at the time.  As I didn't have a fever my cold was not an issue and they went ahead with the OP.  I was in and out of there within 2 hours (including time in the pre-op and post-op rooms) and woke up with no pain.  Just a little "out there" due to the full anesthesia.  The first day went by quickly, and honestly I don't remember much of it.  The second day I was up and taking my first steps with crutches as well as doing some simple physical therapy exercises in bed.  Also very minimal pain levels.  Only muscle discomfort, really.  On the second day after the OP the wund-drainage tubes were removed.  Didn't hurt at all.  From the third day til my last day in the hospital I just spent my time walking around on crutches, going up and down the stairs (super easy) and doing the pt exercises.  That is the most challenging.  I still can't lift my knee up to the front very high.  The muscles are just too tense and traumatised still.  It's a bit frusterating, but I just have to be patient!

I'll go to my doctor on Monday and get my prescription for physical therapy here in Bielefeld.  I hope I can start right away on Teusday.  There is a great physical therapy center near my house.

I must say, Doctor Völker did a great job and the staff at the DRK was incredible!  I just can't believe how little pain was involved and how fast I was able to be up and about on crutches.  Amazing!


Pat Walter

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2008, 07:09:05 PM »
Hi Sean

Congratulations on your new hip. It will get better and better. The muscles will eventually start working again - give them time.

You won't be able to do any abduction exercises - moving your leg out to the side very well for a long time either.  It just takes time for the mucles to heal.  As long as you can walk, get around and not have a lot of pain - it is worth the wait!

You are having a good recovery - like most people have.  People just can't believe us when we tell them we had major surgery and are walking around the next day without any really great pain.  It is the pain from the incision and mucles that hurts - not the new hip.

I hope you continue to have a quick and easy recovery.

Pat

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

Sean

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2008, 09:31:19 AM »
Quick update:

It's now almost three weeks after the surgery.  I'm feeling great and am getting around on my crutches pretty darn fast.  Can walk around the house without crutches (but with a slight limp), and am already doing some qi gong exercises.  Started hitting the old punching bag the other day in my school, but decided that that was a little too much too early!  Best to have patience!  The only frustrating thing is that I still can't get my knee up to 90 degrees lifting it to the front.  The muscles just still seem too tight and "stop" it after about 60 degrees.  Anyone else have experience with this?  The physical therapist say it's a protective reaction of the muscles and that it is not mentally controlable (and I thought I could control everything!). 

Cheers,
Sean

Pat Walter

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Re: Surgery Scheduled in Berlin with Dr. Völker
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2008, 11:11:32 AM »
Hi Sean

Sounds like you are doing well.

You will find after major surgery - you body controls your healing more than your mind. Your leg will get more ROM and you will be able to lift it - but not until it has healed and is ready to do so.  It still could be days or months. No one can predict the timeframe.

That is the one thing young active people have a difficult time with - the body is in charge at this point.  You can help it along - but there are no short cuts. 

Take it easy, you will have a lifetime of activities ahead of you soon.

Good Luck.

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

 

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