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One week post-op/Incision pic

Seven days from my RPAO, I am feeling very good overall. I can already do some things that it took me weeks to be able to do after my LPAO. While I am tired and unmotivated, I can tell that this recovery is on the road to being even faster than my last.

Warning: 1-week incision pic follows.

At one week I can:
  • Feel pain ranging from a 1-5, depending on the delicate balance of drugs vs. activity. Joint is stiff and painful, especially when moving, and also hurts down my leg and on on the back side.
  • Lie on my stomach for 15 minutes before needing to turn. Mom has to help me into position.
  • Lie on my un-op side for about 15 minutes as well. I can get into position, but not easily.
  • Crutch around the house at a slow and steady pace.
  • Get in and out of bed by myself if needed. Painful and a little risky, so I usually wait for Mom.
  • Stand for about 10 minutes before needing to sit. This allows for a quick teeth brush, face wash, hair brush and deodorant/lotion smear. I am winning no beauty contests this week!
  • Run my cpm up to 75 degrees.
  • Pick items up off the floor. Also painful and risky cause my balance isn't good yet.
  • Shower and shave my legs. The ankle on the op side is just out of reach!
  • Rise and sit in tall chairs only, using both hands to ease myself in.
  • Get dressed by myself with the exception of the sock on my op side.
  • Wear sweatpants only. The swelling in my belly/leg has gone down considerably, but not completely.
  • Sleep for 2-3 hours before waking up at night.
The super glue makes the incision look shiny, and the purple hash marks, along with Dr. Mayo's initials, are in permanent marker, so will take a while to scrub off.

See how I felt at 11 days post op LPAO.


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Questions for surgeon pre-op

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About pre-op care and my dysplasia How many degrees is my dysplasia?How’s the other hip? When will I need surgery on it?What are my chances for a successful surgery?Should I be following any special diet or medication restrictions?
About the surgery
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4 months post-op/scar pic

If there's one blanket statement I could make about having a periacetabular osteotomy, I would say this:

It's a long recovery.

When friends, family, co-workers and strangers have comments or questions about the surgery, it's usually something like: "That sounds awful!" or "Was it really painful?" or "Scary."

Truth is, while it was awful, painful and scary at times, this whole time, it simply has been long. At four months post-op, I still feel remnants of surgery in my hip. I still can't lie on my op side for longer than an hour or two without discomfort, and I still have to help my leg in and out of the car on occasion. My hip is still tender to the touch, and of course, that tailbone ...

Don't get me wrong. I have SO much to celebrate, and I can't imagine myself happier with my left hip. I have recovered smoothly and quickly. I'm not asking for anything more. That being said, I have made the following progress in the past two …

3 years post-op LPAO

A surgery can change your body. Two surgeries can change everything.

Today, on the third anniversary of my LPAO, I inevitably think back to my first operation and the years leading up to that day.

Everything has changed.

I am an outdoors enthusiast and exercise nut. I can stay on my feet all day. My new body has freed my soul, and my heart responds in kind.

The breakdown is exactly the same as it was at two years post-op: zero pain with a couple of exceptions, great range of motion, same tingly patch and itching. The one difference is that my tailbone pain has waned considerably, which gives me much, much relief.

I'm a different person today than I was on April 23, 2008, and I'll be forever thankful.