Friday 4th My
Hi I’m Nicky Turner. I am a 41-year-old physiotherapist and I am having my hip replaced in two weeks – 21st May 2012. For me this whole process has been devastating. I know there are much worse health issues out there to have to deal with and as my friends and fellow colleagues say, well it could be worse, at least you haven’t got cancer and haven’t had your legs blown off in Afghanistan. I know that, but for me it is still hard to sink in and get round my head. I think I should have done more to help my poor little hip but didn’t. I tried but it wasn’t enough. But to have massive surgery to cure the pain isn’t me. My job as a physiotherapist was to avoid surgery at all costs and now I am at the end of the road (and tether) and have no choice but to go ahead with it. Marcus Bankes my surgeon assures me it will only get worse and well, there is little choice. Great.
Anyhow as a result I feel I need to get my experience across to all other pending arthritic hips, whatever the age, and see, as a physio what I can do to help. I have worked as a health professional assessing, treating and rehabilitating hips post injury and post operation for 17 years and I want to offer some advice and help to those out there who are struggling along. For some, you may be excited about the fact you will walk without pain, get in and out of a car, put your shoes on and get your leg over a bike! For some reason I feel more of a dread and constantly worry about how long the new hip will last, 2,5, 10 or 20 years??!! I think if it lasts 20 years then my next one will be at 61 and then one more and well perhaps that would be it….?? A consultant orthopaedic surgeon friend of mine, tells me how strong the latest prostheses are and that they can last for years. He is so animated in his description I hold onto to his words for ages and hope that mine is one of them.
So, for me, going from climbing icefalls and cycling over the Alps to barely being able to walk down the road with my 18 month old baby due to extreme pain is simply awful. How did I get to this? How did it get so bad? Why didn’t I do more exercises? Why me? I watch mothers walk with their babies on their back or chest and I envy them, as I cannot do that without causing sharp pain in my groin and outer hip. The pushchair is my crutch and on rainy days I use my umbrella as a walking stick to try and disguise my limp which now is so apparent. In fact cycling to work to treat my patients is easier than walking!
Anyway this is the start of my journey….