I saw my orthopedic surgeon for my 12 week follow up appointment and it was good news.
My X-rays showed some bone growth but the fracture has still not healed all the way. Things are definitely moving in the right direction though.
Signs we were looking for:
- No malunion – check
- No AVN – check
- No nonunion – check
- Alignment is still good – check
- Screws have not shifted (two of them losened up a bit because walking puts compression on the bone but it’s still within the norm) – check
I was given the go ahead to work towards weaning off crutches, which is a process over several weeks as well.
He really wants me to work on bearing more weight so I don’t get “de-conditioned” which I thought was kind of funny. I mean, after being on crutches full time for 12 weeks, there is nothing left of my op leg – he is concerned about muscle mass?? A bit late for that, I’d say.
Ideally, he wants me to push myself a bit. “Push yourself but don’t do too much”. The famous thin line to walk on.
I asked about bone pain and he said, this is normal and to be expected since the hip is not used to carrying weight anymore. It will get better with time. (So basically back to my comfort zone – icing at night. The freezer, my BFF!)
He gave me permission to drive again and I should practice in some quiet neighborhood first, to see if I can shift my R (op side) leg quickly enough from the gas to the brake pedal.
I also should continue physical therapy and “proceed with caution”.
PT was good, the place was hopping.
I did all of my exercises and as a highlight….. I was allowed to practice walking on one crutch!!! It was not painful but my op leg felt stiff and weak at the same time, if that makes any sense.
This weeks home exercises include trying to walk around some in my home with one crutch only. Outside the house still two.
I am not walking fast, pretty slow but still, it’s improvement! Before any upgrade to walking faster, I always have to take two steps backwards and walk slower first.
On the way out from PT I saw a lot of commotion on the staircase. Reason for that – the elevator broke down, so you had a long line of people on crutches and walkers trying to battle the staircase and I am happy to say, I was one of the faster ones on it.
You will never guess what my first luxury was at home! Walking on one crutch AND holding a cup of tea – at the same time. Thank you very much!
All in all, things look promising. I still have long ways to go but for the moment I am very happy and have a hard time trying to wipe that grin that goes from ear to ear off my face.