Monday, December 29, 2008

More gear

You'd think I was having surgery tomorrow by the way I am stocking up. This is what happens when you combine strong project management skills, a controlling personality, and after-Christmas sales. It's just too much for me to resist.

So over the weekend I bought a few things, including a teakwood shower stool for the inevitable seated showers, some non-slip socks, a new duvet cover (I will be spending a lot of time in bed, come on), and some posh new jammies (for all that time lounging in bed).

The shower stool is from Smith & Hawken and it's a nice looking addition to our newly-renovated master bathroom, if I do say so myself. I looked at all the plastic and metal versions and just couldn't stomach the thought of spending approximately the same amount of money for something that is so butt ugly. I've heard that I should get a shower chair with a back, and mine doesn't have one, but I can lean against the shower wall. OK, probably not the most practical and I may regret it, but I promise to get a proper plastic raised toilet seat when the time comes. I don't think Smith & Hawken makes one anyway.

I guess I should try the shower stool out, but how will I simulate the experience of being post-PAO? I can't get my hands on narcotics without breaking the law, but I suppose I can get rip roaring drunk on New Year's eve, immobilize my leg somehow, and see how it goes. I could probably sell tickets as well - standing room only! I can fit about 6 people around my glass-walled shower stall. Tickets will be expensive because I am trying to finance two surgeries; stay tuned for details.

Meanwhile, another hip chick has posted this fab link on her site:

While I have yet to purchase anything I am very tempted. This site is also a good resource on how to correctly size a cane and how to walk with one for those who are new to this hip thing. Yes, it's sad that we young dysplastics all eventually become such experts in geriatric devices like shower chairs, raised toilet seats, walkers and canes.

In fact, I have noticed that most adult-aged diagnoses occur either in the 29/30 age range (how many blogs have I read where people were just about to turn 30 either on their diagnosis day or right before or after surgery?) or, for us late bloomers, at 45. I haven't read any blogs that talk about a diagnosis at age 37 or age 41. It always seems to be 29/30 or 45. Interesting.

(I'm sure I am going to get a bunch of comments from those diagnosed at 26-and-a-half, and 48, and 39 ... I know you're out there as this was not a scientific study, just my recollection after reading a lot of blogs and posts on the Yahoo list. I'm just saying.)


Brick said...

I enjoyed reading this blog and thank you for the smile it brought!

Kris, in New England said...

Glad you liked the cane website - it really does have some very sexy canes, which I can't believe I'm saying with a straight face.

45 years old here with diagnosis on December 23, 2008. It does seem odd that most of what I've read in the way of personal accounts, are all in late 20s or exactly 35. Must be some of kind of Dysplasia Conspiracy!

And I know what you mean about stocking up. I don't even have a surgery date yet and I'm already laying in some routine supplies. Makes me feel like I'm actively doing something that will help when I reach that point when I can't do anything at all.

StephSTL said...

Hi! I don't know if you still read these comments. I was diagnosed with bilateral hip dysplasia and right side labral tear/FAI at 41 years old (a few months ago). A PAO is recommended for the right side as I am having pain/discomfort. I am trying to determine if the pain is great enough at this time to go through such an extensive surgery,, or if I wait it out and see when/if I should have a replacement. My surgeon has said I should have the PAO in the next 1 1/1 years, as I am getting older and the joint may not be as healthy/able to be successfully corrected as I age more. The problem I am having right now is I am VERY active (Cycling, including competitively 5-6 days a week, primarily). I am still able to ride, although that's when I have the MOST pain (going up hill or in headwind - anything that makes me use more force against the pedals). When I am off the bike, I just have a constant dull ache in my groin and sometimes in my quad (Feels like it's in my femur). I have to be careful how I move so I don't further "tweak" something and do strength training exercises and yoga with great care/caution. I've pretty much stopped running, but I never ran much. Maybe 3-5 miles a week, a couple of 1/2 marathons. I am wondering how others determined the pain/impact on their lives was significant enough to undergo such a huge surgery/recovery.
Thanks for your consideration.
Stephanie Nadeau
St Louis

HipSk8 said...

Hi Stephanie - I do check the comments and I'm happy that you wrote. I have some words of advice - it is important to do the PAO as early as possible once you decide that's what you want to do. It is a big decision, but the healthier your joint, the better the outcome, and it can deteriorate quickly. Also:
1. Join the Facebook group for hip PAOs so you can ask questions in a bigger forum. There are all kinds of athletes who are pre- and post- PAO who can discuss their experiences, inclduding those who are running marathons post PAO.
2. Check out Jeni's blog (she's a competitive biker who had a PAO):
3. I had a lot of referred pain in my back but mostly just dull aching pain in the groin after exercise as you describe before my RPAO. I had very little actual hip pain before my LPAO. However, I knew it would only worsen with time and wanted to get it over with and get on with my life, while my joint was still healthy. Pain isn't necessarily the best indicator of how bad your joint is.
4. I'm now 53, 7 years post RPAO and 6 years 8 months post LPAO, very active, and I'm doing great. I was never a runner, but I hike, bike, figure skate (international-level ice dance), do yoga, go to the gym, swim, and do everything I want to do. The PAO was a great decision for me. I did lose flexibility but everything else came back. The recovery was long, but in the end it was worth it.
Let me know if you have any additional questions, and my very best to you!