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Thursday, January 15, 2015

Right hip surgery vs left hip surgery

It sure seems like this surgery/recovery is easier than the first one. I know what to expect, I know what to avoid, and I was in better shape physically prior to surgery. Though similar in many ways, the surgery actually was a different procedure, so that is contributing to differences as well.

What's better:
- Hip labral repair has better outcomes than debridement
- I scheduled my post-op ten days out rather than 6 days out: I think they removed my stitches too early last time and the wounds didn't stay closed.
- No drainage drama this time (last time I dealt with copious drainage for over a week)
- And hence, no antibiotic drama (last time I had a severe reaction to the antibiotic I started to prevent infection when the wound was open).
- The surgery was shorter, so my hip wasn't in traction for as long. That means my whole leg feels better.
- And my hip flexor, especially, feels pretty healthy and strong. It was really weak and irritated for months last time (I couldn't live my leg without using my hands for several weeks post-op).
- Crutch pads...I don't know how I did it without them last time.

What's worse:
- Repairs are more delicate, so I had to use crutches for four weeks. Brutal!
- There is more pain in the joint this time, which is normal since it was stitched.
- Honestly, the timing was terrible with all the stuff I had going on at work plus holiday events, and I was exhausted for most of the first four weeks.
- Post-op anesthesia-related nausea, although better at first, hit me hard the next day and I was miserably ill for the whole weekend.
- Not using a continuous passive motion machine means I have to use the exercise bike every day, and that plus PT plus the incredibly time-consuming act of doing anything means that my days are packed. I actually have to get up earlier now to fit it all in, and walking on crutches to the gym took like 10 minutes from the parking lot!
- My scars are larger this time because a repair necessitates a larger opening than a debridement.
Top: Right hip (for modesty could only show the two large scars; there is a third portal as well).
Bottom: Left hip, so faded that you can only barely see the three scars.


  1. Crutches for four weeks would be awful, I am sure. Hopefully all the worst is behind you now!

  2. The good news is, now you're out of hips to have surgery on!

  3. Yeah, it seemed like all of this came at the worst time of year, just be glad it's at least warm in LA, it would much tougher in cold weather. After reading all your reports on surgery, now every time my hip twinges a little or aches after a run, I think, "Oh no, there goes my hip", you've got me paranoid, ha.

  4. I'm so impressed with how quickly your scars have faded from the first op. You can hardly see them.

  5. It won't be long and this will be a memory! It's good to have a blog version as I am sure people looking into the surgeries will be happy to find your journal.