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Do You Need a Hip Replacement? - What to Expect If You Do!

Photo of a hip joint with worn cartilage.

Photo of a hip joint with worn cartilage.

Broken bones

I regained consciousness and, looked up into the face of a fireman; he was trying to pry my driver's door open. Other firemen Went around to the passenger's side and opened that door, they had what looked like a surfboard and they were attempting to pull me upon it. I unfastened the seat belt and turned my back to them and pulled myself up on the board. As I was being taken to the ambulance, I asked where is the driver who hit me was, they did not seem to know and, I did not see any other vehicles.

When we arrived at the hospital and x-rays were taken, I was told, my seat belt broken my collar bone and because it was healing with the bone overlapped, they would have to re-break it and place a plate over the break with screws on each end, like a splint. I said it does not hurt so, just leave it alone. That was 19 years ago and to this day, I have not had any problems with my collar bone.

My hip is a different story. The x-ray showed that the ball of the femur was shattered, with tiny cracks like an old vase.

I had been placed in the children's ward until a room became available and, was in excruciating pain and, my screams were frightening the children, so I was moved to a hallway on a different floor until a room became availabe. After what seemed like hours I was assigned to a room where, I was put in traction for the next week and a half, as the pain subsided, they brought a walker for me to use and I was sent for therapy every day for another week and then sent home.

It never occurred to me that I would need a Hip replacement

My hip seemed to be healing and the orthopedic doctor told me that it was healing, as I continued to go for therapy, but my injured leg seemed to become shorter.

When my husband and I moved to a different state, it was suggested that I see an orthopedic doctor here.

I did not see the point, what could a doctor tell me? Except that my hip was getting worse. Instead, I joined a gym and as the months and years passed, I was beginning to feel pain, especially when sitting, standing or walking for long periods.

At the time of the accident, it never occurred to me that I would need a hip replacement.

About three years ago, when the pain had increased, at times, to about an (8) on a scale of (1) - (10) I went to the orthopedic doctor that had been recommended, and was told that the cartilage was deteriorating and I needed a hip replacement.

He could see that I was really scared and, he said but I can see that emotionally, you are not ready. And, he was right. He said come back and see me when you can no longer tolerate the pain.

As more months and years passed, the pain became worse and, after another three years, I realized that, I needed to have the hip replaced ASAP, as the pain had begun to interrupt my sleep.

I made the appointment and, went to see Dr. Heerwagen, the orthopedic surgeon. X-rays were taken and, I was told that the cartilage was completely deteriorated and, when I walk the bones are rubbing together. I was told the alternative was to get a cortisone shot, which would only last a short while, maybe one to six months and, was only temporary and, the only permanent solution would be to have a total hip replacement. I could only get the shots every three months. Just don't wait until you have to come here in a wheelchair to get the hip replaced, Dr. Heerwagen told me.

Possible side effects of cortisone shots

I opted for the cortisone shot and, went to Baylor Surgical center for it. When they woke me the pain was gone. Strange, I did not realize how badly I had been hurting, until I no longer had the pain.

The cortisone shot lasted exactly three weeks and the pain came back with a vengeance. Not knowing what the possible side effects of cortisone shots could be and, trusting that they were safe or they would not have given it to me.

With so much pain again I went to see Dr. Heerwagon, the orthopedic surgeon and ask for another cortisone shot. Because of possible unique side effects, especially Joint injections, that can cause injury to the joint tissues. I was told that, I would have to wait three months to get another cortisone shot.

I went home in pain and, after working outside for a few hours, I was in such agony it was impossible to sleep.

It was Friday and, after 5pm, I could not call the doctor until Monday, I could not let-on to my husband the horrible pain I was in, for fear he would go into panic mode.

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Monday, it is late May and, I have made up my mind to have the hip surgery. I called the Orthopedic Surgeon and spoke with his nurse. I asked her many questions. I told her to pencil me in for some time in August. Half hour later I called her back and asked her to schedule me ASAP. After we talked and talked about my husband's appointments with his group of doctors, it ended up being in August, after all.

July13th, I had an appointment to have regular labs done, and thought they would have the request from the Orthopedic Surgeon, to do the screening for the hip surgery. Mary Lou, made the decision to do the labs for the surgery and then she called Dr. Heerwagen, who faxed the request for everything he would need.

July 16th, I got a call to come to Dr. Long, my family doctor's office. When I got there I had an EKG and, then was sent to the hospital where the surgery would be done for a chest x-ray.

July 26, hubby and I went to a class to learn the sequence of what I will be going through on the day of surgery and, we were taken on a tour of the hospital (which is beautiful.)

Replace or Repair: The miracles by Ghost Production's

It is almost time!

Everything is prepared and the time is almost here. All that is left to do is go to the hospital at 6am.

To be continued. . . . .


© 2012 Shyron E Shenko


C E Clark from North Texas on November 06, 2019:

Back to share/post this informative helpful article on FB & AH, for people who may be about to go through this procedure in the near future, to find answers to questions they have about it.

Blessings dear friend . . .

C E Clark from North Texas on August 20, 2019:

Posting this on AH & FB in hopes that anyone facing this procedure and anxious about it will find comfort in learning about your experience.

Hope all is well with you. Blessings, dear friend . . .

C E Clark from North Texas on October 19, 2018:

This is a great article for people who will be going through this in the near future and for those close to them so they will all better understand what to expect.

I don't mean to draw away from the seriousness of this article, but in fact what I need (and what most of us need) is a president replacement. We need a mature adult to head our country. Someone who doesn't feel the need to constantly act out in order to get our attention. Someone who doesn't need Stormy Daniels to spank his bottom with a Forbes magazine because he's ridiculously conceited and self-absorbed, or for any other reason. Someone who is not an international embarrassment to all who know him, or to most of the people he represents.

For the good of the country and to make it as painless for everyone as possible, including himself and his family, I think he should resign and not put the country through an impeachment ordeal, but of course the man loves ordeals, so there's little chance he will do anything less than making an even bigger spectacle of himself than is necessary.