Birmingham Hip Resurfacing through Anterior Incision
days in hospital, two weeks with walker, eight days with
cane and back on my two feet
I was a somewhat serious runner in the nineties (five
marathons) but had tapered to three miles three times a week
while playing tennis (doubles) three times a week. I started
to notice an onset of pain while running and playing tennis
and eventually decided to see a doctor. I live in the New
Orleans area and this was during the Katrina rebuilding so I
was only able to get an appointment to see and Orthopedic
Assistant. He took one frontal X-ray and said “Well, I see
the problem”. Looking at the x-ray he pointed out the hip
sockets where there appeared to be no space between the ball
and socket and described how there should be and said space
should be filled with cartilage. He recommended I stop
running and stop playing tennis immediately and suggested
swimming or bicycling as an outlet for exercise.
Running had been my outlet for cardio and stress relief for
years and was as much a part of my life as eating and
sleeping. I was relocated to Houston at the time and went to
the Methodist Hospital Sports Clinic where they took an
extended series of X-rays and reached the same conclusion
with respect to the state of my hips, but the Doctor said to
keep doing whatever I wanted to do and when the pain got to
bad, we’d look in to hip replacement. I didn’t know anything
about the procedure but the Doctor was reassuring when he
said hip replacements had gotten to be somewhat routine and
the technology had advance to the point where the implants
lasted much longer than the five years purported in media.
I made friends with Advil, dropped running but kept playing
tennis and my limp and pain worsened. A co-worker in Houston
told me of an acquaintance who had just had both hips
replaced through the anterior approach and provided me the
gentleman’s phone number. I called and was told of the
patient’s background, diagnosis and eventual treatment and
was given the benefit of extensive research into surgeons
and procedures. In this case, Dr. Stefan Kreuzer of Memorial
Bone and Joint had performed the surgery and given the
glowing recommendation, I made an appointment.
I met with Dr. Kreuzer who explained the procedure, but
in review of my X-rays mentioned I might consider hip
resurfacing because of my age (50) and activity level. He
explained the differences between resurfacing and
replacement with the comment the best of all worlds would be
to do resurfacing through the anterior, providing a more
stable hip with the benefit of a shorter recovery period.
They had not done one as of this time (April 2007), but were
looking for a suitable case.
We set a date for mid November and at my pre-surgery
appointment was told that multiple anterior resurfacings had
been performed and the results were positive. On November
16th we added my name to the list. I was three days in the
hospital, two weeks with a walker, eight days with a cane
and then back on my feet. I started physical therapy during
the end of the walker phase and at seven weeks have
progressed to the same elliptical machine workouts I was
doing pre-surgery and walking 3.0 MPH on the treadmill.
If all goes well, I will be taking my first treadmill
running steps on February 1st and hitting my first tennis
ball on March 1st. Both dates could probably be moved
forward, but I’m trying to be cautious.
I highly recommend Dr. Kreuzer at Memorial Bone and Joint in
Houston for the anterior resurfacing. I’ll send a picture
when I hit the first tennis ball.
Jay C. Cooke