It is now two and a half weeks since I had a revision to the hip surgery that was originally done on me in 2009. I have learned a lot about joint replacement as a result of my situation, although that didn’t make the second time around any less painful for me. The most amazing thing I learned throughout all of this is just how resilient the human body really is because I am living proof.
My right hip bone has been cut twice, broken, sawed, drained of fluid, packed with new hardware that should hold me a while, screwed into the joint space in four places and stitched tightly both on the inside and the outside.
A day after this assault on my body, I was told I would be up for a little while to see how I might do with taking a little stroll down the hospital corridor. I knew this was coming and I felt like dead weight. I couldn’t even sit up by myself much less move my legs off the bed without help. And the only reason I wasn’t walking the same day as the actual surgery was because this was a revision. I caught a break.
Yet somehow, with a walker and encouragement from the wonderful staff of the Joint Replacement Center at the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital at Rahway, I walked the hospital corridors. Surprisingly, the more I walked, the easier it became. This, after a nearly four hour surgery the day before. How is it that the body can respond so quickly?
And then the physical therapists came by to weigh in on my condition. They encouraged isolation exercises to strengthen the butt muscles, the knees, the thighs and the ankles. Of course they made me walk and walk and walk and gave me some rules to live by for a while so as not to hurt the new hip. At first these exercises were difficult to do because they involved contracting and tightening muscles that were extremely sore.
I confess to begging for some garlic from culinary services to try to repel these people since that seemed to work for Dracula. But by the second day, I was amazed at what I could do because just a few hours before, I was feeling the agony of defeat. Cancel the garlic. These therapists know their stuff.
As I continue to recover from revisionist surgery, I am so grateful for the skills of my surgeon, Dr. David Rojer, who has again given me a better quality of life. It will be a few months before I can return to work or drive a car or get around without a walker or cane, but I am definitely bouncing back. I am relatively pain free and getting much stronger every day.
My biggest complaint? Getting the 25 outside incision staples removed last week. Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!
Note to surgeon: I love you, but next time use the dissolving stitches if you don’t want to hear me scream because I am that big of a baby, as you now know.