A New Perspective – Hip Labrum Repair (1 Week Post-Op)
Before I started writing this post I checked my Facebook feed. The first image that popped up reminded me that 1 year ago I got up at the ass crack of dawn to grind out some tough miles. This morning, as I sit here, with a mug of coffee beside me, my perspective is a bit different. I woke up at a leisurely hour (although I am still an early morning riser) without worrying about getting my miles in before the sun starts beating down on me. I am about 1 week post op from my left hip labrum repair and my Saturday morning workout is worlds away from what it once was.
Now my “workout” involves a lot of hobbling and maneuvering with my crutches (which I think I will name considering they will be “by my side” for the next 3 weeks). Getting ready takes a bit more planning – I am now more apt to throw the first thing on than pull out several outfit “options”. Then I have to slowly (and carefully) make may way downstairs so that I can plop myself on the couch for the 1st round of icing my hip as I continue to recover from left hip arthroscopy with labral repair and partial iliopsoas lengthening surgery that I had on August 3rd.
It’s still a little hard to believe how less mobile I am than I was on August 2nd when a walk to the garden or playing catch with the dog was easy, breezy. Now (and at least for the next couple of weeks) that’s going to be less easy.
That being said I have nothing but good things to say about how my surgery went. From the receptionist to all the medical personnel to Dr. Kuhn – everyone at Middlesex Center for Advanced Orthopedic Surgery could not have been nicer to me and my surgery could not have gone smoother.
I was one of the first hip surgeries on the doctor’s schedule that day – which was great. I mean I could not have anything to eat or drink after 12am the night before so I was ready to get this show on the road and get something to drink.
Everything in pre-op went smoothly and before I knew it I was being walked to the surgery room by my “team”. I even got a nice hat to wear (although Mark had a heck of a time getting all my hair underneath it. I was a bit nervous going into surgery and I can’t tell you how many times I told Mark that my biggest fear was waking up in the middle of surgery. I was less nervous about the surgery itself and was actually looking forward to it. For too many months the labral tear in my left hip had been quite a hindrance, not allowing me to do the one thing that I love to do. I was ready to get the surgery done and begin the process of healing and recovery.
Granted the surgery was arthroscopic but as I told the anesthesiologist I wanted the “good” and not the “generic” drugs. The last thing I remember is laying on the table and telling the “team” that think they slipped something in my IV as the next thing I remember is waking up in recovery, slightly nauseous and ready for some diet Ginger Ale.
I had thought that I was going to be given a hip immobilizer but was not. I was given my new best friends (crutches) and gingerly made my way (with Mark) to the car, grabbed some lunch and headed for the couch where I remained for the remainder of the weekend.
The Nerve Block they gave me during surgery was great and in combination with the pain medication (Percocet and Morphine) I was feeling no pain for the entire weekend. I remained on the couch until Sunday because it provided a nice way for me to wedge hip into a non-mobile position.
I finally got to remove the bandages and take a shower on Saturday and let me tell you that shower (despite being a workout in itself to complete) was one of the best showers I have EVER had.
I was also touched at the flowers and text messages that I received AND as a special surprise Coach James stopped by on Friday. Even though I am not being “coached” right now I was truly touched that he stopped by to see how I was doing. It’s the little things like that which remind me why I am lucky to have found such a great coach and friend.
Mark and Harley were great – never leaving my side and making sure I had everything I need within reach. I did not have a bell but a walkie talkie that came in handy (when I decided to use it).
All was going smoothly until Tuesday when I had what I think was a adverse reaction to all the narcotics in my system. I will spare you the details but let’s just say I had a “cleanse” that I was not expecting – one that lasted almost 12 hours. I don’t know how people can become hooked on narcotics because if they ever experienced what I went through (cold sweats and throwing up after just a sip of water) I don’t think they would try.
So – I basically weaned myself off all pain medication within a 24 hour time period. The only medication I am continuing to take at the time is indomethacin. It’s an anti-inflammatory that also helps stop the development of bony oseophyte development that can occur after hip surgery.
I also had my first post-op appointment on Wednesday where I was told that I have to remain on crutches for the next 3 weeks (boo!) but could start physical therapy (yeah!). Because I had both a labral repair AND partial iliopsosas lengthening I have to be quite careful and not put ANY weight on it for the next couple of weeks AND not raise my hip above 90 degrees.
In terms of why I had a reaction so far out from surgery (usually mediation reactions occur within 24-48 hours of surgery) no one could give me an answer. BUT if I had to guess I would say – I had a lot of medication in my system and that regardless of how much water I was drinking, my body could not process it. By Tuesday my body had enough and told me so in the best (and worst) way it knew how.
So that’s were I am one week post op – using crutches sucks for sure. I am more reliant on people and have to be careful with every step I take. For a person that is go, go, go – this has stopped me in my tracks. Funny story – as I was making my way to the exam room the doctor mentioned that I was taking unusually large steps. He reminded me that crutches are not to be used as an exercise device. I will have to remember that BUT I know that by the end of this I am going to have killer arms.
I am also back to work – part time in the office and part time working from home. It’s been difficult going back – yes I had a mountain of work BUT it is also now remembering to do enough at my desk so that I only have to get up to use the copier/fax machine when I had several jobs to do. OH and getting Starbucks to bring to work – that’s not going to be happening. It’s enough just to get up the stairs let alone bring up a cup of coffee. I have even had to start bringing a cross-shoulder bag to lug all my stuff up to my office (which is on the second floor in a building with no elevator).
I hope within the next week I can start driving again – I think that is going to be my next accomplishment. The doctor indicated that I could but getting the Running Czar (aka Mark) to agree to that is another story. I feel a bit like Rapunzel (although Mark is sure to tell you that my hair is not long enough for that – yet). Until then – life continues to move forward – just a little bit slower than I am used to and THAT’s taken some getting used to.