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Thursday, September 2, 2010

3 Months Post-Op

Today marks the three month mark since my left hip arthroscopy. How does time fly so quickly? Man alive! In any event, things are going alright on the recovery front. I do not have any of the pre-op pain (ie catchinhg, groin pain, deep achy pain) that I had before, but I am still not pain free in any sense of the word. It is still early in the recovery process though and shouldn't expect to be pain free for another 3 - 4 months (according to my surgeon).

I am not seeing my physiotherapist anymore since I have moved back to school. But one perk about going to medical school is the fact that there are doctors all around! I was in lab a couple of weeks ago and got talking to one of the doctors and he thought that he could help me regain some motion and reduce my pain levels with this certain technique that he learned. Let me back up for a second, at our school we have some very prominent Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Specialists that are highly respected nationwide. After speaking with one of them, the doctor got me in to see him within a matter of days; despite the fact he had a seven week waitlist. He treated me with a technique called Fascial Distortion. Oh my goodness, did this work well! I went from not being able to stand up straight because my muscles were so tight, to being able to fully extend for the first time in more than a year. It was quite impressive. The only down side is that it hurt so, so, so, so much! (apparently on the level of child birth according to my doctor). Despite the horrendous pain, swelling, and bruising that lasted about 2 - 3 weeks, my pain levels have significantly decreased and got more out of that one treatment with this technique than from all of my physiotherapy this summer combined.

I have just set up another appointment with my doctor since I need to have this done again; probably twice. My left hip is still limited in flexion and is still angry from the surgery, but it will get better, and if we can enhance the healing process by doing it again, then sign me up! Also, my right hip is apparently very limited in ROM as well. Funny how having my left side hurt so much can mask the fact that I can't barely put my right hip through a decent ROM! I still have almost no internal rotation and flexion is markedly decreased as well. The doc asked me if I could work out or do any physical activity with my right side being so seized up. But, I haven't been able to try it out doing phyiscal activity since I had it fixed in 2008 because right after my right side was fixed, the left side deteriorated. So, it looks like I am having this Fascial Distortion on my right side as well.

I look forward to my appointment with my doctor next week since things are really weird right now. My gait is all messed up because I haven't been able to extend for more than a year and then I suddenly can extend all of the way, I feel awkward while walking. My rectus femoris muscles are so tight that I think they may be restricting my ability to walk normal. Having this awkward gait is making my pelvis rotate toward my left side with each step so every time I put weight on my right side I have a sharp pain in my back. So right now the main culprit of my pain is my back. Hopefully he will be able to address this next week as well.

I am excited that I am recovering, albeit slowly. It is great to have another doctor who really knows his stuff re: musculoskeletal medicine, and really cares about how I feel! My surgeon is just so busy and, yes, he is a surgeon so his main focus is performing the surgery and then, understandably so, has very little interest in the recovery of the patient. So as of now, I have a great surgeon and a great rehab doctor that is better than any physiotherapist I have come in contact with. I do want to make it clear that I don't think physiotherapists are poor at all, in fact, they are wonderful professionals who know a lot and realy do help a lot of people. Just the ones I have had/come in contact with, have not been as good as my current doctor.