Riding the rollercoaster – and not liking it.

15,5 months PO

 

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My week of taking the recommended amount of Ibuprofen twice a day is over. Didn’t do anything.

I tried again, 12 minutes, on the Elliptical and paid for it. Falls in the category “felt good while I did it….”

Went for an easy walk in the park – payback again, about 4-5/10 pain in the joint, lots of pressure in the hip and the hip muscles in the groin are feeling like they are in some kind of spasm, on and off. It’s mostly when I am laying down.

So what’s the plan now? Not to lay down anymore, keep going like the Duracell bunny??

 

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Why does my hip do okay for short distances (walking around in the house) but anything, just slightly strenuous, over 10 minutes will set it off? Very mysterious.

God knows this is not my first flare, I have had many in my three hip surgery recoveries, but the longest one was three weeks and then I got back into the game. This my fifth week now with this and I don’t see any improvement.

 

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Exercises in the gym have come to a complete stop except for my walk in the park. I know it won’t be pretty afterwards but I need to get out.. it might not be ideal for the hip, but it’s good for the soul. Plus I am not the slave of my hip.

During the day I feel okay but there is always this kind of “shadow” looming over the hip.

~~~

I now called my doctor for an appointment and my assumption is, an  MRI  is upon the horizon, to get to the bottom of this.

 

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A pretty safe way to know something is going on with my R hip is, when the other hip is unhappy too.  My L is an operated hip as well and is sensitive to anything that’s out if the ordinary. My built- in alarm system, so to speak.

My L hip is wonderful and easy going, it takes quite a bit to upset it and if this goes off, then my ears go up.

 

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~~~

For now I wait for my appointment next week and we’ll go from there.

 

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Back in the OS office

 

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Little update about my flare/ butt ache.

I saw my OS for my shoulder and once that was taken care off, he asked about my hip. (Practical…one stop shop!)

 

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I told him, in general my op hip is fine but since about four weeks it gets stressed out super easily, I had to cut my workouts in half, have to walk slower and just do less of everything.

 

The only thing I can think of that I changed in the last month was going from “20 minutes/ level 1” on the Elliptical to “18 minutes/ level 1” and “add 2 minutes/ level 2″, which I thought was quite reasonable. I know my hip is very sensitive to change, so I wanted to introduce the next level very gently, to not stress it out too much.

The same evening my hip was really angry, it felt like an alien, trying to come out. Deep hip pain, lots of pressure in there, about 5/10. It got slightly better the next day but the hip never has been the same since then. Things that I did before that were just fine, will now set it off.

 

                                                   I am not amused.

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I told my OS about it and he said, there is no magical timeline aka “at PO month xy you are supposed to do this or that.” Everybody heals at a different pace.

That said, 20 minutes on the lowest level on the Elliptical/ bike or stationary bike do seem a bit on the slow side to him, being that far out. He also said, that he knows I am a slow healer though where he usually counts in “weeks” with patients recovery, he knows he has to count in “months and years” with me.

 

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For the moment I am supposed to take 2 Ibuprofen twice a day for a week. Hopefully this will get the inflammation down.

If I still have problems in a few weeks, then we’ll do an MRI with “metal supression technique” because of my three lovely pins in my hip. If we did a normal MRI, the metal would distort the picture and the radiologist would not be able to see the hip as well.

What he would be looking for is AVN, which would be super uncool. But that would be the worst case scenario.

 

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I also asked him about my daily butt pain. His theory is, since I am still unbalanced, front to back and right hip versus left hip, it’s most likely hamstrings. Tight hip flexor in the front means pissy hamstrings in the back. It’s all connected. If one thing is off, it will effect other things as well, like a domino effect.

~~~

So I guess for the moment I keep snacking on Ibuprofen, give my hip some extra love and wait for this to pass. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

 

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Flares are not cool.

I am almost 15,5 months PO now and still not done with my latest flare. Not sure what exactly it was that my op hip did not like, but this is week 4 of whatever it is going on.

My R hip likes to be a drama queen for absolutly no reason.

 

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My usual walks in the park? My hip is not a fan. Sitting for too long? Forget it. Working out my precious 20 minutes? In my dreams. I am back at 10 minutes MAX, on a good day, then my hip has had enough.

Not sure what majesty does not approve of and just to make it extra worth it, my other hip is chipping in too. Sympathy pain – never a dull moment.

I lost track flare number what this is. Sure feels like “cut 98”.

 

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The other day I looked something up in my first hip blog (this is my third and hopefully “three times is the charm”) and I could  NOT  believe what I read!! At 5 months PO after hip arthroscopy for labrum tear I rode the stationary bike on level 5.  F-I-V-E!!

Level five is something of a different universe for me. I’d be thrilled to pieces to manage level 2 at this point. Eventually I will get to the next level and I will be very happy there but again, five??

 

 

I think next week I will fix up my bike again. I have no idea if my hip is ready for it, probably not (next flare, here I come) but I’d sooo love to go for a quick bike ride on flat ground in the park.

And since I am at making plans, I’d also love to do a 5 k walk this year. Hopefully there is some event going on that fits in my schedule. I would not walk it with “making time” on my mind; for me, it’d be a victory to do it. Just walking 5 k on my time.

 

Last year this time I was 3 months PO and just allowed to put 50% weight on my hip/ leg, not great memories. This year is flying by much faster, is much more fun I must say. Even with the stupid flare. I take a flare over crutches any day.

 

 

15 months PO update after complete hip fracture

Another month under the belt and slowly the whole hip story becomes a faint memory. Thank goodness.

 

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I am doing really good and I have finally reached my goal of 20 minutes on the Elliptical, TM (walking) and the stationary bike, all level 1. Big yay.

I tried 18 minutes level 1 & adding 2 minutes “level 2” on the Elliptical. My hip did not approve of it and is pissed ever since, BIG time. What’s another flare in my never ending hip career?

So at the moment I am laying low till this has passed but it’s just a matter of time. I always bounce back.

 

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I also would love to get rid of the deep butt ache that I have every day… my loyal companion. In two weeks I am seeing my OS again, I guess I’ll ask him.

I am back at PT for my frozen shoulder (see http://www.frozen-shoulder.blog) and asked my PT about my butt ache. He said it can have several causes, it would not hurt to investigate a bit further, just to be sure and yes, it most definitely also can come from the hip.

That better not be the case.

~~~

Spring is around the corner and I am itching to go in my backyard. Last year there was NO outdoors anything for me, since I was January, February, March, April and May on crutches. No winter and no spring for me but  2019  is looking already brighter.

 

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I’d also really love to ride a bike outdoors this summer. I settle for “once through the park”. Last time was three hip surgeries and two stress fractures in my pelvis ago, in the summer of 2013. Before hips took over.

Seems like another lifetime to me.

 

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Going strong

14 months PO

 

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In general I am doing really well and on an average day I am pretty much pain free. I am still doing my hip friendly workouts 6x/ week and will now try for 19 minutes on the TM, Elliptical and bike/ level 1.

~~~

Last week we were out of town and the hotel we stayed at had a gym. I tried all three machines but did not like them. I could set the level and time but not the speed on any of them and had to kind of guess how fast to go.

With the stationary bike I obviously went too fast because my op hip was really aching at night. So, even at 14 months PO, I still have to watch it to not go too fast or too long.

~~~

I also still have my high hamstring aches at night, but I will see my OS next week, maybe he has something smart to say about it.

I have now reached the point where my hip often is not even on my mind anymore. I am really more busy with my shoulder.

If any of you have a frozen shoulder – hop on over to http://www.frozen-shoulder.blog and come along for the ride.

 

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Persistance is my middle name

1 year/ 1,5 months PO

 

Last week I tried 17 minutes/ level 1 on the Elliptical, treadmill and the stationary bike; was okay, which makes me hopefull for 18 minutes soon.

My goal for the moment is to reach 20 minutes consistently and then I will try to add minutes on level 2. To reach “20 minutes on level 2” would be the ultimate for me, considering where I am coming from.

~~~

Another goal of mine is to sit on a real bike again. Outdoors, for real, not in the gym. Wasn’t able to do that since 2013. Hopefully once I have reached my “20 minutes/ level 2” goal.

It’s probably not happening this year, but there is always 2020.

 

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One thing I seem to not be able to get rid of is hamstring ache though. Every single night, like clockwork – five minutes on the couch – deep butt ache here we go.

 

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I stretch, I work out, I mix up my exercises but the hamstring pain stays. If anybody has a suggestion on how to improve it or even get rid of it, I’d really appreciate it. 💝

~~~

Otherwise I am doing well. It’s going slow but steady with my hip and I have not much to complain about. Pain level on an average day is really low, some aching here and there but very doable.

Honestly, my focus is now more on my frozen shoulder which is a whole different story and a thing of beauty by itself.  It’s not fun but compared to chronic hip pain and recovering from three different surgeries, this is quite doable.

At least it’s not a major weight bearing joint; I am mobil and not on crutches.

 

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Amazing, how one can adapt and adjust, really.  I guess after years of dealing with pain, my pain tolerance has risen. Not sure if this is a good or bad thing.

Anyways, what would life be without some orthopedic fun? As long as my sarcasmn is alive and well, I can deal with it.

 

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Working (it all) out

1 year/ 1 month/ 1 week post operative

 

Back from skiing – meh.

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Our journey back was very “interesting”, thanks to United, making a big mess out of it. At arrival, my op hip was solid angry, like 5/10 and delighted me the whole night.

I am still thrilled about me going back to skiing, it’s a huge achievement for me and very encouraging  but this is a new week and I need to keep working on gaining strength and endurance. No rest for the weary.

 

To not stress things out too much, I added “1 minute” to the Elliptical, the stationary bike and the TM.

Elliptical and stationary bike were fine with 16 minutes/ level 1; 16 minutes  TM were not. For a change “both” hips were aching afterwards. Keeps things fresh I guess.

 

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I was asked several times why I am not working out with a personal trainer. Well, that’s easy, because there is no personal trainer out there who knows about labral tears & hip fracture with hip pinning in “a young adult”.

I checked on the internet. Nothing. Nada.

The same old song…” this is a fracture for old people and old people a) get a THR and b) are not looking for a trainer”, or I get refered to “rehab methods for  THR  patients” or, alternative No. 3 – “physical therapy in the early stages after hip pinning”. Been there, done that.

The absolutely  LAST  thing I need right now is to have some gym gorilla yell at me with the attitude “no pain, no gain” and risk injury or a huge setback.

 

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Two years ago I asked around for a personal trainer already and asked each time if they have experience with labral tears. (My labral tears got fixed but I still have cartiledge damage in my hips.) Nobody. They looked at me like I am a Martian.

 

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So why would anybody know how to deal with somebody with two labral tears AND a hip fracture on top of it, at my age? Even my  PT  with a doctorate degree had a tough time guiding me, since I was his first young hip patient ever. It’s just not a common injury for young adults at all.

 

My hips have healed, I am still finetuning things, but an operated hip is just never the same as a healthy, untouched hip, ever again. The rehab is very delicate and even a year out, I can stress my latest op hip out, overdo it easily and get a flare out of nowhere. A person not familiar with these injuries will not understand the fine line I am walking since many years.

To a non- hipster my workout routine might seem very slow, tedious and wimpy, a fellow hipster will get it. Why I am doing this and not that, why certain things can trigger flares or why flares can just show up for no good reason. The whole dimension of having hip issues is hard to explain to somebody who doesn’t have any.

~~~

Nevertheless, I guess a trainer is not meant to be, so I will continue doing what I am doing and make more research for new hip friendly exercises. Nobody knows my body and my limits better than me.  One way or another, I will make progress.

I am excited to see what my second year after surgery will be like. Last year was dedicated to doing serious time on crutches, working my butt off in PT and learning how to walk and function again. Now it’s time to play.

 

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