The Joy of Dry Needling

Today was my last PT appointment before surgery.  The PT office has become my family.  Today’s visit was sorta bittersweet.  We talked about the next time I’d see them I’d be on the other side….back to the ole hip brace and crutches.

The majority of today’s visit consisted of getting needles shoved in various parts of my body.  I have a secret love for dry needling.  In the moment it may be uncomfortable, but the relief afterwards is worth the pain.  I think I am the only patient that requests more needles!  My PT planned to needle my glutes and hip….but I had other plans!  My left calf had really been bothering me, so I asked her to needle it.  The calf is the worst place to be needled in my opinion.  She knows that if I ask for her to needle my calf then it’s really bothering me!  After that I asked her to needle both adductors.  When they are tender to the touch when you shave you know that there are lots of trigger points.  She was afraid I would get needle fatigue and hate her from all the soreness.  My calf was wicked sore most of the day, but other than than everything else felt a lot better!

Pre-op appointment is next Wednesday and surgery is 17 days.  I think I am still in denile, although I am trying to get myself organized and collect the things I’ll need post-op!

Another drive to Columbus!

As I said in my last post…I’m paranoid.  This last 18 month has been a challenge and I want to learn from all of it.  I wanted to cover all my bases, so  I made an appointment with the general surgeon who fixed my hernia.  I just wanted to make sure I don’t have one on the right side.  My appointment was at 8am so I had to leave home early to avoid traffic and make it on time.  Luckily, the sunrise was absolutely stunning  this morning (this is the view from the parking garage)!

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The good news is that he doesn’t think I have a hernia on the right side, “yet.”  So, we proceed with the current treatment plan and then go from there.  He did say I will likely need a repair on the right at some point in my life.  He thinks the pain I described is coming from my still weak core and hip.  I’ll be honest, I don’t feel completely reassured after my appointment, but I think that is because I know how my body has responded on the left.  I do trust him and appreciate his honesty.  So, fingers that all I need is a hip arthroscopy on the right!  I guess time will tell!

My next drive to Columbus will be in 3 weeks on my 33rd birthday (November 2nd) for my pre-op appointment.  Surgery in 34 days.

The dreaded other side…

It’s been awhile since I’ve written about my hips.  This isn’t because they are perfectly healed, but it’s because I am at what I’m calling my new baseline on my left side.  Overall, my hip feels good, but  I still get some symptoms from my hernia repair.  My hernia surgeon feels my symptoms are due to tight hip flexors and weak core.  So, I continue PT to work on this!  I’ve been going to PT regularly since August 2014 (shoulder, back, and now hips).  So, now it’s on to talk about my other side!

I am now 9 months post-op revision on the left side and 7.5 months post-op hernia repair.  Last year, in-between my original surgery and revision, I started having some twinges on my right side.  I mentioned the pain to Dr. Ellis at one of my appointments, but he didn’t want to talk about it until we had my left side under control.  He hoped it was aggravated by the extra work it was doing to compensate for my left.  I thought he was right until a few months ago.  I went off of my mobic to see how my left hip felt and sadly I started feeling twinges in my right hip again.  I spoke with my PT about this and she told me that she thought this would happen, she just hoped that it wouldn’t happen for 2-3 years.  After much thought, I decided I was going to go ahead and schedule an appointment with Dr. Ellis in hopes that he’d tell me I was being paranoid.  Well, I saw Dr. Ellis, but he didn’t tell me I was being paranoid.  I had x-rays and he told me that my right hip is shaped exactly the same way my left was shaped.  Dr. Ellis wanted me to have a steroid injection to see if it would help.  He said if the pain in my joint got better from the lidocaine portion of the injection and my hip pain continued to get worse then he would recommend surgery.  I had the injection a few weeks ago.  The injection helped for a few hours and then I went back to the same pain.  So, I have given in and scheduled surgery.  T-minus 44 days, November 14th is the date of my 4th surgery in the last 16 months.