It’s been 3 long months since I was operated on at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital. A lot has changed in the past few weeks. The hip doesn’t hurt like it used to. When I’m relaxing, it doesn’t hurt at all. I take Motrin sparingly, almost exclusively at night.
Until this point, I was on a non-weight bearing status, and was desperately looking forward to a change. Well that change finally came this past week at my 3 month follow-up in NYC. The surgeon looked at the film from an MRI I got last week and said things looked great. He was able to show me where the new bone graft was integrating with the old hip. He said I can start putting weight on my leg, starting with 30 lbs. I’ll slowly increase the weight on my own over the next 3 months. Hopefully in September I’ll be able to walk unassisted and never have to use crutches again!
I saw my surgeon in NYC on Thursday, he said things are going well and that in 4-6 weeks we might be able to see some changes in an MRI.
He had a couple things to say which were tough to hear. The first was that my leg most likely will never have the same range of motion that it had before, because the structural damage to the head of the hip is already done and won’t heal. The second was that the healing process could take up to 2 years to complete. I never thought that this whole process would take so long.
Aside from not being about to walk, things are pretty much back to normal. The hip is tender and still has some swelling, but the lower leg is back to normal. The range of motion in my foot is still limited, but that will get better over time.
I take Motrin 3 times a day, and that seems to be enough to manage the pain. I still can’t get comfortable, and sleeping is a challenge, but that’s nothing new.
I see my surgeon in NYC in 3 weeks. I’m assuming he’ll at least change my weight bearing status from non weight bearing to touch down weight bearing, which means I’ll at least be able to rest my foot on the ground instead of holding it in the air all the time. Considering how conservative he is, I highly doubt he’ll up things any more than that.
Had my 1 month follow-up at BMC last week. They took a set of X-rays and said that there were no visible changes (which is a good thing right now).
Here are a couple X-rays that were taken immediately following my surgery.
You can see the drain tube I was talking about in this X-ray. A screw was also inserted to make sure the fibula graft stays put until it bonds with the hip.