Z accepts the situation

So, is it good news or bad to know that I haven’t just been making a fuss, and that my own evaluation, that I don’t feel I can wait until I’m over 60 for a new hip, is probably correct?

After a long consultation with the consultant – yeah, does what he says – although I can’t do a balanced evaluation without hearing the other side, I’m accepting his advice of caution and not going to pursue the option of hip resurfacing. I’m not going to tell you all we said, because he was quite open with me (which goes down so well with me, I like to be treated straightforwardly even if I don’t like what I’m hearing) and it would be no more right of me to say what he said than for him to talk about me. So, sadly, that’s a closed book for me. I am a closet risk-taker by nature, but not against clearly explained advice from an expert in his field.

I wonder what my doctor said in his covering letter actually. Not that I’d ask to see it, I also trust my doctor.

Anyway, the x-ray shows considerable wear in my hip. The consultant said that I walk well and have good balance and movement considering how bad it is. If I asked for a replacement right away, he’d agree to do it. As to when I do ask, that will be my own decision. I said that many people have told me that they know when the time has come, and although it is considerably hampering me from doing what I would like to do, I know I don’t want it yet. He agreed.

So in short, I got on fine with him, I liked him in a professional sense – that is, he instilled respect and confidence and was straight with me – and when I need an operation I’ll be happy for him to do it. When asked, and I am aware that it isn’t a fair question, he said he thinks I won’t be back within a year but that I will be before I’m 60. It’s something of a relief to know that I won’t have to argue my case when the time comes and that it is as bad as it feels. I’m sure you can appreciate how depressing it is to be relieved to know it’s as bad as I think.

I also asked him if he could see any reason for the arthritis – he said that the socket of the hip bone is slightly shallower than that of my left hip and so perhaps there has been more movement in that hip since birth. That’s fair enough and reassuring – there’s no sign of arthritis in my left hip and no particular reason for me to expect it – or not – that is, it may come with age but not yet.

Anyway, now I know, I’m sort of relaxed. It’s already bad so doing whatever I’m capable of won’t make it appreciably worse. I’m okay with pain and don’t think it matters in this regard – please, if you suffer from something agonising don’t think I’m making light of it – my point is that I’m well within my own pain threshold and it’s more a nuisance than anything else. I’m fine with toughing it out until it would be silly to do so any longer and then I’ll ask for a new hip. Isn’t it lucky to have something so curable? And not to have to be braver than I want to be?

And not to have the prospect of paying £12,000+ for elective surgery in January.

Yup, on balance I’m okay with this and I’m glad I went and, because now I know where I am, it’s worth the money I’ve spent today. Whatever that turns out to be, Astonishingly, when I offered to pay at once, they airily said they’d send the bill.

13 comments on “Z accepts the situation

  1. Z

    Well yes, I knew my hip was buggered and it’s sort of reassuring to know how bad it is, in a masochistic way.

    I’m not just making a fuss. Indeed, I have a stiff upper lip. Oh, yay me.

    Pah. Such a bleeding Pollyanna. I have to make triumph out of disaster at all costs. I have to admit to being a Positive Thinker after all and not a total misery. Pah.

    Reply
  2. luckyzmom

    So, you don’t have a flat tire yet, it is still just a slow leak. I haven’t mentioned it to anyonem, but I have been having discoomfort in my other (left) hip for several months and wanted to hear what you found out about resurfacing. I understand how stiff your upper lip has to be sometimes. Exercises helped me a lot before I had surgery and in my unexpectaantly speedy recovery.

    Reply
  3. Z

    I’m still neutral on it, because I haven’t heard both sides and I take the point that it takes a great deal of experience, at least 100 operations and preferably 200, to be really adept at doing the resurfacing, so I’d not discourage anyone from investigating it. But now I find that I’m quite near having a new hip anyway, I feel more patient about it – if that makes any sense at all.

    Reply
  4. Z

    Oh yes, I agree – and since I am generally speaking very well and have a slight horror of going to the doctor (because who am I to bother an already busy person, who has actual ill people to deal with?) it’s been really embarrassing to me to feel compelled to go and see him every six months because I felt my hip was deteriorating. Now I know it really has been, I don’t need to see him about it.

    Reply
  5. Dave

    Please do say if you feel you’d rather not (for instance) do the kneeling on the ground bricklaying bits, but would rather do standing up work – I could do the lower bits and we could use the Sage’s scaffolding for you.

    Reply
  6. sablonneuse

    Well, I’m glad you got ir sorted and know where you stand regarding a hip replacement.
    I’m full of admiration for my friend in the next village who has had three hip replacements. She’s nearly 80 and had the first one in her early 60’s so it had worn out and had to be replaced. This doesn’t prevent her and her husband of 82 (with three knee replacements!) from going away for frequent trips in their ‘camping car’. So, you see, there are probably many more brick walls for you to build yet, Z!

    Reply

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