FAI Surgery #2: Early Recovery

I’m now 10 days post-op from surgery to correct hip impingement. In some ways this recovery has been better than the first one. I don’t feel like my pain is nearly as bad, which makes a huge difference and I assume is due to the fact that I didn’t have a labral tear in this hip. Stephen also said he thinks I’m moving around much better this time than I was last time. I don’t know that I have felt that way, but honestly the first few days after both surgeries are kind of a blur, so I will take his word on that. What’s been strange is that even though the recovery hasn’t been so bad, I haven’t wanted to be up and about as much as I did last time. I managed to go to Wal-Mart with my parents on post-op day 4 last time, and there was no way that was happening this time because of the nausea and fatigue I felt. I still don’t really feel like going to the trouble of making myself presentable enough for public, but I did go to lunch with my mom yesterday, and it was great to be out and also great to spend time with her. What wasn’t so great was being seated at the very back of the restaurant and having people look at me as I hobbled by them, but it won’t be the first or last time I’ll be stared at!

For the first few days after my surgery, the biggest challenges were not the pain in my hip but sleeplessness, fatigue, and a persistent sore throat. The sore throat was the biggest surprise to me, even though the anesthesiologist told me it would be possible, because I didn’t have that issue at all the first time around. My sleep quality has been less than ideal but is improving, and I’m thankful that I have the rest of this week off work so I can still sleep whenever I need to. Initially I had a really hard time getting around on my crutches because my body felt so weak and unstable. I have a walker with wheels that I borrowed last time and hardly used, but I have ended up using it quite a bit because it was easier to use than the crutches. Recently I have started using the crutches more, and while I thought it would be a piece of cake to use them again, it wasn’t quite as smooth a transition as I thought it would be. Of course, I’m also not the most graceful and coordinated person alive, so I don’t know why I was surprised to struggle with them again. I dealt with terrible nausea and loss of appetite for about 3 days, which was really difficult. I’m not sure what exactly caused the nausea, as I did not have that problem at all with the first surgery, but I suspect that I wasn’t taking my pain medication with enough food. I finally started seeing improvement from that on Saturday and now don’t have any nausea. I’ve also had my share of terrible nightmares the past few nights (including one so vivid that I woke Stephen up because I was convinced it was real) and hope those go away soon.

I am planning to go back to work part-time on Monday, and I’m both ready and not ready for that. I’ve been pretty bored at home (it turns out there’s only so much reading and watching of TV one can do before being tired of it), so it will be nice to get back into more of a routine. Sitting upright in a chair all day doesn’t excite me, as sitting is the most uncomfortable position for me (I have spent the majority of my time at home either lying down or reclining), but I’m hoping that easing into it by working reduced hours the first week will help.

Stephen and I will make another trip to Nashville on Friday for my first follow-up appointment. I’m hoping Dr. P. will clear me to drive then, since there’s really no reason I can’t drive because I don’t use my left leg at all while driving. I also expect to get my orders for physical therapy and will be ready to begin that and see my great therapist again.

Even though this whole process is an ordeal that can be draining sometimes, I am trying to remember that I am closer to healing with each passing day. I long for the day when I can write that I am pain-free, and I pray that day comes so that you all can share in my joy at seeing what the Lord has done! And even if that day doesn’t come, I still will be joyful about what He has done, for the work He has wrought in my heart is far more important than any work done on my hips.

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