Hard to believe, but it’s been over six
months since Caitlin’s left hip replacement surgery. We saw the surgeon for a
check-up two weeks ago, and I was really expecting him to say that we’ll be
heading for round two this summer. Caitlin had been complaining about her right
hip, taking Naprosyn as needed, and even resorting to vicodin occasionally
again. One week in January, we went a week solid with her being in pain every
night and having trouble sleeping. It was the most awful deja-vu.
But then, the bad days started to spread
out farther and farther. By the time we saw the good doctor, she was back to
mostly good days. The x-rays showed no further deterioration from last year.
There is no cartilage left in her hip, but there is the tiniest space remaining.
In the two years before hip replacement,
Caitlin successfully underwent joint injections by fluoroscope to buy some time
and pain relief. The first round kept her mostly out of hip pain for a year.
The second set bought six months. By the time we did the third set last
February, she got no relief at all in the left side and we started down the
road to surgery. By last June, her left hip was essentially collapsing in on
itself – The x-rays showed her femoral head on the left much smaller than on
the right – like an ice cream cone that had mostly melted in the sun.
But the right side was helped by those
injections….. so now, we may actually be able to buy some more time with
another hip injection. If things start getting bad again, we’ll schedule that
procedure (it’s no fun, because it’s under general anesthesia…. But it’s much
easier than full hip replacementJ)
It’s been such a miracle to just have some months with minimal to no pain for
Caitlin. Though we’re not eager to go through the process of surgery and
recovery again, I certainly will not wait to see her suffer like she did last
two years. For now, its looks like the pattern is still in “holding” – and
we’re just being busy with life, trying to savor each day. Softball is getting underway
– and for the seventh year, Caitlin is playing. I think this will be the best
year yet – the most fun with the least struggle. Being able to play in
childhood – should be an automatic…. But we’re feeling grateful.