Hip replacement journal part two – Meeting my teenage doctor

Carrying my pain for almost six months (from June 2016) I finally caved in and made an appointment with an orthopedic doctor which was recommended by my general physician. Who by the way, really deserves a whole blog dedicated to himself. As a teaser I can let you know that unless you are dying, anything else shall pass by his magic touch with no medication needed, so a lot of our appointments ended up with a pat on the shoulder and few days later whatever I had did pass a way. Well, except for this pain which, as I pointed out, is here to stay for now.

Before the appointment I had to go through some x-rays on my hips. It’s weird to me that the only places they ask you to strike a pose when you hit 50 is in the x-ray room. “Mr. Alfi, move your hip a little bit to the left… a little bit to the right… now let’s do the polka.” Really? Standing in a dark room with a teenage nurse with a big x marked across my chest is not my idea of having fun. I don’t know if she is playing Space Invaders back in her little protected booth or worse playing Assassin Creed 3. Just hope I won’t glow in the dark after this one.

So usually when you pay so much for health insurance here you get the radiologist results or comments on your x-ray the same day. Mine indicated in all CAPS letters SEVER ARTHRITIS on the left hip. Ok, so what the fuck…. And…. What the fuck again and again and again … what does it mean? Arthritis is old people thingy? With those x-rays I went to my first visit to my orthopedic doctor. Let me first set up the scene. Nice office, very well equipped, busy but efficient staff, well experienced nurses–mine was a male nurse, which I though was cool. And now, I’m waiting inside the room to meet my doctor. And here comes a skinny, 18-year-old looking Indian person, and at this point everything is in slow motion. This person is telling me his name, shaking my hand, and introducing himself as my orthopedic surgeon. All I remember at this moment is voices in my head in a female Polish/Turkish* Jewish accent saying “Ho my god, you are going to be his first patient,” and then an immediately vision into a surgery room and someone screaming in a panicked voice “What do I do with this bone?” At that very moment I snapped into reality and when he started talking, it was love at first sight…. Well at least all my fears blew away. He was very articulate in explaining my situation providing the options and the future steps, also he is not 18 he is 30+ but just look like a kid, and he was amazing and polite, at least that was my first impression.

He explained me that my hip join is bone-on-bone (not bonbons the candy) meaning that the cartilage that is supposed to protect the bone got eroded, and now I have bone-on-bone contact that causes inflammation, that causes my pain. He went on in more details explaining the situation, but the above will be sufficient for now. He was very surprised that I can still walk straight without limping with my condition, seems like I have high tolerance of pain, or do I…..(TAM TAM TAM dramatic effect… drums in the background)? You will find out once you read that the days post-operation is where the real fun begins. All I can say as a teaser is that the plethora of pain-types I encountered were only slightly shy off the amount of new drugs I was introduced to.

So where did I drop off… Yes … he was surprised I could walk straight without limping in my condition and told me that the decision to have the surgery is up to me and that it really depends on my comfort level. Based on the x-ray, I needed to have the surgery, the timing depends on how long I can carry the pain. And the pain is getting heavier every day.

So did we schedule a surgery that day? Hell nooooooooo! It will go away, don’t you remember? I could have stretched this story a little longer, but to make it short I had another appointment after few more months and we scheduled the surgery to 12/15/2017, which was ten moths a head.

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