Hip to be repaired
February 17, 2010 10:24 AM   Subscribe

I was just scheduled to have surgery on a labral tear in my hip this Monday. What do I need to know going into this, and what will my recovery be like?

I am a 36-year old female who works a sedentary office job, and works out (kickboxing & boot camp-type classes, with a little core work) five days a week.

I'm not sure exactly when my hip started to hurt, but after it didn't stop, checked in with the doctor. He referred me to an orthopedic doc who said my x-rays looked fine, then tried to get me an MRI.

Insurance had me do 6 weeks of physical therapy before I got it, and the verdict was a labral tear- torn cartilage. Doc won't know until going in if the surgery will be arthroscopic or traditional.

Never had a surgery before, but am less scared of it than the very-long sounding recovery. How can I optimize my time in order to make the best recovery possible? Also, is there anything I should be doing right now to ease my first week at home? I live in a two-story house, downstairs bathroom is only a half.

Never been through this, so am not quite sure what questions to even ask.
posted by soleilMia to Health & Fitness (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Call the surgeon's office and ask to speak to a nurse. He/she should be able to answer your questions. Be sure to ask about climbing stairs.
posted by Carol Anne at 10:45 AM on February 17, 2010

Get a sidekick to fill your pain prescription and pick it up *before you are out of the hospital.*

Seriously, the two worst recoveries I've ever had involved people waiting until I was fully with it-- and screeching my lungs out-- to fill my scrips. This is crap and you should arrange to have your meds waiting for you when you come to.
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 10:50 AM on February 17, 2010

Don't worry about the stairs. I've had more major hip surgery than this, they most likely won't let you out of the hospital without a lesson on the stairs. This also holds true for my friends who have had hip and knee replacements.

Agreed on getting the prescriptions and any needed equipment BEFORE the surgery. I was let out on Saturday and didn't have crutches, just a cane. I wasn't able to get crutches until Monday. Also major pain pills aren't very well stocked because of theft issues, so it can take hours to fill the 'scripts.
posted by Gor-ella at 11:42 AM on February 17, 2010

My husband had labral surgery on his shoulder in December. He went in early a.m., and was home by lunch. The surgery took about 2.5 hours.

The biggest thing he was told by the nurse was to keep up on the pain meds. Take them when you are suppose to, even if you don't think you need it.

He also was suppose to have someone with him at home the first few days, because the meds (vicodin) can make you woozy.

The first few days post-op, he slept a lot. Might want to stock up on band-aids for when the bandage/dressing comes off. Hubby got the surgery bandages off one week post-op, but the doc left the three small sutures in for another week. Large bandages were very handy to cover them. Pick up some body wipes, or baby wipes, since you probably won't be allowed to shower for several days. Maybe dry shampoo for your hair? And clothes that are easy to get in and out of - sweats, a loose fitting robe, or lounge dress.

You won't want to be getting up and down alot during recovery, so keep things handy by the bedside or chair, like phone, lap-top, remote control, etc. Oh, yeah, put fresh sheets on your bed before you leave for the hospital. Trust me, you will appreciate having clean sheets when you get home, and are stuck in bed for days. Add a few extra pillows, too.

It seems weird, but Hubby really liked bendy straws for his drinks. Makes it easier to drink if you are lounging, or reclining.

Good luck to you!
posted by socrateaser at 12:49 PM on February 17, 2010

You should consider joining a couple of Yahoo groups: Labralicious, for labral injuries, and HipScope, which is more specifically for arthroscopic surgery patients. The group members are almost all 20-45 and female, and everyone's in different stages of hip repair.

I'm a member of a sister group for hip dysplasia patients (which caused my bilateral labral tears), and I've found other "hippies" to be friendly, supportive, and well-informed. Good luck!
posted by swerve at 1:39 PM on February 17, 2010

My boyfriend has this injury and was told by his orthopaedic surgeon that he should wait as long as possible to have the surgery. The long-term consequences could possibly cause more pain in the joint than the pain he is/you are experiencing now. Have you received a second opinion?
posted by alygator at 3:16 PM on February 17, 2010

I am compiling a list of questions to ask his nurse (hopefully she'll call back soon), and adding in some more thanks to you!

Scrips are in, fore-arm crutches should arrive this afternoon, and my husband will be keeping bendy straws close at hand.

HipScope sounds awesome! I can't read it here at work, so will check into it this evening.

alygator, this is my second opinion. Both doctors seem to feel that since I've not healed at this point, surgery is the next best step. Neither one said anything about waiting. I emphasized how eager I was to be at peak fitness again, and both concurred about surgery. I'm 4 days out, and rather nervous...
posted by soleilMia at 11:07 AM on February 18, 2010

Follow-up: My labrum was torn off 2/3 of the way from the bone, necessitating an open surgery. The first couple of days sucked, thereafter, each new day has been even better!

To answer my own questions, the best thing I did to ease my recovery was being in the best possible shape beforehand. My progress has been so good that I'm not going to have to do any physical therapy! (The downside to this is not being able to work out currently, and keeping my self from taking things too quickly.)

Forearm crutches were great, but I wish I'd gotten the kind that snaps around your arm. Also, good padding on the handles is absolutely crucial.

Thanks again for the answers, especially the links to the very helpful Yahoo groups!
posted by soleilMia at 7:40 AM on April 7, 2010

« Older Blood Bowl   |   How can we choose the interface for file sharing... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.