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Thursday, May 15, 2014

10 Weeks Post Op & Athrogram

Oops!  I totally missed my 10 week post op post.  I was in no mood to update as I had had my right arthrogram done on my 10 week post op day and it kinda made me miserable the rest of the weekend and then the entirety of my week has been consumed with running around.  So, I will update on my arthrogram and MRI and then will do an 11 week post tomorrow or so.

I was extremely nervous about the arthrogram/MRI as last time it took one hour to get the needle into the joint, and even then the majority of the contrast had extravasated out of the joint.  It was a terrible experience that I dreaded having to do again.  So after ensuring that I did not take any NSAIDs for three days prior, I had my mum come with me and we spent a lovely Friday afternoon in the hospital.  I usually don't have my mum come with me for these things, but the MRI at this particular hospital is very small and I didn't exactly like being stuffed in there last time and figured I would take a valium to relax me for this portion of the test.

After getting changed into the hospital gown and scrub pants, I was brought back to the fluoroscopy suite.  The physician assistant was really nice and after I reminded her she did my last arthrogram, she said that she hadn't forgot me and my case because being allergic to chlorhexidine and having such a difficult time to enter the joint was hard to forget.  But after cleaning off my hip, feeling for the femoral pulse, and injecting lidocaine into the skin and subcutaneous tissues (which kinda burned), she had the radiologist come in, and they ensured that the dye was in the joint.  With one small adjustment to the needle placement it flowed into the joint nicely.  She seemed quite attentive and almost nervous about doing this procedure by herself.  She had said that the radiologist and herself had discussed my case prior and that we would be observing the entire procedure.  Fair enough, because I did not want to have a repeat of her performance similar to my previous experience.  But it all went smoothly.

Next, I had to walk around for 10 minutes to distribute the dye around the hip joint.  10 minutes is a lot of walking when still on one crutch (for the opposite hip).  I had several employees stop me to ask about which hip was injected and which hip I needed the crutch for.  Kinda bold if you ask me, but whatever. One of the employees was nice enough to bring tape to tape my gown shut because I was walking with the HUGE hospital gown and was worried about showing too much.  A funny thing to think about is how I was not concerned about maintaining my modesty when I was originally post op and attempting to walk in a hospital gown.  I know that the nurses and therapists were good at ensuring I kept covered (I mean, I'm assuming this because I don't recall ever worrying about it...I simply worried about not passing out/throwing up/saying mean things).

The MRI portion was the easy part.  Since I was relaxed from the Valium, I didn't mind the MRI tube.  My surgeon likes to use the 3T MRI.  It took approximately 45 minutes to get full images of my right hip.  They had attached an intensifier (?), or some special cage thingie on my hips that centralized over my right side.  It wasn't too tight and was totally fine, even with my screws sticking out on my left side.  After the hip images were done, I had 15 minutes of right knee images taken.  I asked if it was for a study, and the tech told me that it's just what they do now.  (I appreciated the thorough explanation. Ha!  I suppose if I remember, I will ask my surgeon at my next appointment). 

Afterwards, I needed to get a CD of the images for my surgeon and I convinced them to make me one too.  But they said that they would mail me the CDs since it would take a half an hour or so to get the images processed.  And on a Friday afternoon at 4:30pm, I was fine with waiting for it to come in the mail.  My mum and I then had to go get gas, stop to see if my Neurontin had been called in to the pharmacy (getting my Neurontin called in turned into an 8 day ordeal....something that I could rant on and on about, but will spare the details), and then obviously I needed to treat myself to something yummy--and I got a McFlurry at McDonalds.  I am not an ice cream person (kinda lactose intolerant), but this was exactly what I needed!  I gobbled a Reece's peanut butter cup McFlurry down in a matter of minutes and enjoyed every second of my calorie laden treat!!!!

So now I am awaiting the results online (they post the reports to my online chart) and for the CDs to arrive in the mail.  It's not going to be earth shattering news because we already know I have dysplasia on that side and we already know that I need a PAO on that side.  I suppose it will show us if there are any abnormalities that we didn't expect, but I would be willing to put money on it that it will show post-operative changes and dysplasia.  But, I'll update when I receive the results.

6 days ago marked my 10 week post-op date.  I was still using one crutch outside and could hobble around inside the house alright.  I still had trendelenburg gait, but nothing too terrible.  No hard narcotics have been needed for several weeks now:  Tramadol PRN and Tylenol does the trick.  I had talked with my surgeon earlier in the week about my nerve pain as medially it still feels like boiling water had been poured on my skin and had severe allodynia when my pants/shorts touched my inner thigh.  After convincing my surgeon to increase the Neurontin dose, it felt like pulling teeth to get the script called in by his assistant.  Now I am taking 200mg BID. 

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