After dealing with dysplasia in my left hip for 20 years (right hip has it but not causing any problems yet), I had elected to have hip resurfacing from Dr. Gross. I had seen him in the office to reassure myself since I was only 3 hours from his office. We had settled on Aug 4, 2010 for my surgery date. Unfortunately, I never made to see him on that date.
On June 28, 2010, I began to have serious pain in my legs. The pain got worse and I went to the hospital. After 2 trips to the ER in a 24hr period and 5 tests, the doctors determined that I had a ruptured disc at T11/T12. The worst part was that I had lost movement in my legs; I couldn’t walk. I still had feeling however. I had surgery to remove the disc fragments that were pressing on my spinal cord and the surgery was successful. The doctors didn’t know if I would ever walk again. Needless to say, I cancelled my surgery with Dr. Gross.
I spent a month in a spinal cord rehab program in Charlotte, NC. At 21 days post-op, I regained enough use of my legs to walk again but only short distances with a walker. I spent the next 7 months in outpatient rehab. I went from walking with a walker, to using a crutch, to a cane and even walking some independently for short distances. However, as my walking got better, my left hip got worse.
I was in frequent pain throughout February and March. I tried a cortisone shot to help ease the pain and it worked for a week or so. I knew I had to get my hip fixed if I was to progress any farther.
I saw Dr. Gross in late March in his office. He was willing to proceed with surgery but cautioned that my bone density might be low from inactivity and if so, I would have to get a THR. As he suspected, my DEXA score was low. I also couldn’t get on his surgery schedule until late June, However, his nurse Nancy Smith promised to call me if a cancellation occurred. There was a cancellation and I got a surgery date of April 20th, 2011.
Dr. Gross confirmed that my bone density was low and the chance of a femoral neck fracture with hip resurfacing was high. I told him I trusted his judgment and we could proceed with the THR. I received a Biomet magnum, large ball, metal on metal THR last week. So far things are going pretty well. I am not the usual patient so there are more issues to be concerned with. I am on Fosamax, Vitamin D supplements and a slow down recovery process to help my implant heal and increase my bone density. Everyone involved in the hospital process was great and I really liked dealing with Dr. Gross and Lee Webb.
I am still a fan of hip resurfacing and if my right hip needs work, hopefully my bones will be strong enough to support it.