Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Eleven Weeks Post-LPAO

My hip has been doing spectacularly well for the last week or so, with no significant episodes of pain or limitation at all.

Prior to that there was unpredictable, variable pain that seemed unconnected to my activity level. The pain would appear without warning, sometimes in the front of the hip, sometimes in the back, on the ischium, and sometimes, more rarely, on the outside of my hip. It would last for a random amount of time, and then it would disappear, seemingly without cause.

For example, one morning I woke up and had pain with every step I took with my left hip, for no apparent reason. I hadn't pushed the hip the day before, or done anything out of the ordinary. I rested all that day, hoping that would help, but the hip continued to hurt in what felt like the small muscles surrounding the hip, as if I'd overdone it walking or something. Which I hadn't. The pain lasted into the next day and then, as suddenly as it had appeared, it disappeared. For no reason. Frustrating.

The last episode of that inexplicable pain was about a week ago. Since then, my hip hasn't complained at all, despite an increase in my walking, intensification of my workouts with my trainer, and the addition of both swimming and spinning to my regimen. In fact, my hip has taken all these challenges in stride (pun, sorry) and has felt great.

So I don't know how to explain any of it. All I can report is that I've been doing more and more with my hip and it has been feeling good. My right hip, which is now ten months out from its PAO, feels great as well. My fitness level is improving markedly and I'm starting to feel like my old self again.

Next week I will get another x-ray taken and I'll have more to report once Dr. Millis has commented on it.


  1. I feel your pain. I haven't had surgery yet. But just here within the last week, my left as decided that it was going to hurt along with the right one. And the sad thing is I don't have to do anything to it. It is also feeling like it is going to give out. And my right one as already been doing it. So when lefty started giving me trouble, I just shook my head. I am in the waiting process of hearing back from the doctor to set up an appt. Actually it is would be with Millis. After reading about him from the internet and blogs, I though he just sounded like the one. And I hope your hip decides to behave and not cause you pain like that.

  2. Hi,
    So glad to hear how well your recovery is going. I scheduled my RPAO with Dr. Millis for 6/11/2010. I am a teacher and summer the best time for me. My hip is giving me very little pain so it is very difficult to convince myself I still need this. I have awhile to think about it. My hope is that since my symptoms are not bad at all, my course will mirror your left hip more than your right hip recovery. Of course I will have to wait and see the results from the contrast mri. I just hope I don't chicken out....I am really scared. Reading this blog helps to ease my fears!

  3. Katie -- Thanks for your note. I'm sorry to hear your hips are giving you unpredictable pain like that. I hope you get in to see Dr. Millis soon! He will fix you up like new.

    Gerri -- That is great that your hip is giving you so little trouble before the surgery; most likely your cartilage is in good shape then, which will make recovery that much easier. DO NOT be fooled into thinking you don't need the surgery because your hip isn't hurting that badly. Dysplasia means that you have a structural certainty of damage down the road, and later on you may not have the opportunity to get a PAO, and so hip replacements may be your only option. So think of this as a necessary preventative surgery if nothing else. And don't be scared, it is definitely something you can handle! Glad my blog helps.

  4. Yes, I keep reminding myself that its PAO now or hip replacement later. I saw Dr. Millis in November and just scheduled it yesterday because I needed to read and research all I could about PAO. I am a lifelong competitive distance runner. I obviously can't run now. Dr. Millis said that there should be no reason why I could not return to running after this is all over, although he said he would not endorse it. (I really like how he seems to treat his patients as multi-faceted people with goals, hobbies, and feelings, and not just as a dysplastic hip) I have never met an ortho who thinks running is a good thing. But going from the thought that I could never run again to there being a possibility of running again gives me hope as well...not being able to run has been very depressing. I am lucky to live in Boston now. I may not be in Boston a few years down the road....so it is the perfect time to get the surgery. Just need a few days (or weeks) to let it sink in. Thanks so much for the encouragement!

  5. Gerri -- That's what Dr. M said to me about tennis. :) And I was back on the courts five months after my RPAO, and I think it will be even sooner post-LPAO. So your hope is not misplaced!