This blog was started simply out of frustration and desperation for information and answers that were not available at the time regarding FAI. I never could have imagined how it would grow and reach far beyond my small world, to hundreds of thousands of people and members of the medical community. I truly appreciate every reader and don't take for granted your journey and search for answers.
Here's the good news, more than 4 years post-op I can say with confidence my surgery was a complete success. I am 98% pain free most days and have returned completely to normal activity. In fact, I am doing much more than I ever thought possible when this whole things started.
I also want to make absolutely clear that there was no immediate fix...no quick route to diagnosis, treatment, surgery or recovery. It was long, scary, painful and frustrating. It was hands down the hardest and most painful thing I have EVER gone through. However, I found out what I was made of and how much I was loved...even when I wasn't lovable and for that I am thankful.
My prayers were answered when I found Dr. Thomas Byrd in Nashville and his excellent staff as well as the physical therapy I received under his care at Nashville Sports Medicine. I noticed today protocol for the hip is now posted on their website: http://www.nsmoc.com/nashville-sports-medicine-tennessee.html.
Having the surgery at that time was considered very controversial although it seems to have much more awareness now. It was not covered by most insurers and there weren't very many surgeons with the skill and experience to perform a hip scope. Actually, there weren't many surgeons even familiar with FAI. Like many of you, I worried if i would make the right decision. I took a long time, almost a year to decide. Once we had a wheelchair at the house, it got easier. If you can't walk there's less reason to wait.
After the surgery every tinge of pain scared me. I was terrified of injuring myself or tearing my labrum again. I doubted for months...I was still experiencing a lot of pain even 8 months post-op. I am an impatient person, but I followed orders exactly and used my crutches for weeks, followed the PT protocol and was very conservative in my activities well beyond the one year post-op mark. At 12 months post-op I began a program to run by alternating a one minute run with a one minute walk, increasing the run time by one minute each week....that's slow folks. Once I could run for 30 min (over 6 months to get to that point) I started increasing by mile.
It took FOREVER. It was slow, but you know what? It worked and I never (knock on wood) suffered the dreaded overuse injury.
I did compete in that adventure race in 2012 and placed in my age group. I've ran in many other races since and have returned to normal activities I had once grieved the loss of. I snowboard, kayak, train run...mountain bike regularly and even get this- I've started CROSSFIT!!! Which I've been trying unsuccessfully to hide the obsession of.
What's different now is that I know my limitations and have nothing to prove to anyone. I've already proven to myself that I'm tough as nails. I've known how it feels to be at the bottom, so there's no falling left to do. I am careful with my body because it is precious to me now. Everytime I am blessed to have the warm sunshine on my face during an afternoon run I thank God for his mercy, my friends for their support and my family for their patience.
I want you all to know how much it means to me to look back and know you have followed me through this journey. I will try my best to post more regularly and hope to hear good things happening in the lives of others who have been touched by FAI. My heart aches in knowing that not everyone has a happy ending. I hate that some of you who started this with me years ago are still suffering. I only hope that as more attention, research and experience continues to bring light to this condition, success will be the norm for those in treatment.