I’ve lived with a lot chronic pain issues for at least half of my life. The first was ankle pain. After a childhood of chronic ankle sprains, I finally had to have surgery on my ankle to repair the ligament (it was literally hanging on by a thread–I have pictures! Eeew). That surgery and recovery was LONG and HARD.
When I became really active and I was doing all the things–intense workouts, running, biking, crossfit type workouts, etc. I started to develop chronic knee issues. Everything from IT band issues to runner’s knee to arthritis.
When I was pregnant with Logan I developed SI issues that I’ve battled since. With Zoey, the SI flare up, the piriformis injury and now the torn hip labrum.
And of course, pregnancy and birth are a pain all in to themselves.
I got a cortisone shot in my hip three months ago and it began working and gave me somewhat of a pain-free summer. I was still taking it easy, but at least I could still go for walks and I was starting to try hiking again. I did this all while I waited to see the surgeon about the tear.
Hip labral tears don’t always have any obvious symptoms. However, sometimes people may experience:
- Pain in the hip or groin
- Stiffness in the hip joint and reduced range of motion
- A catching sensation in the hip joint
I experienced all of those. The shocking/jarring pain of my hip giving out or catching was the worst. I couldn’t bend down, squat, go up stairs, etc. My hip would just give out on me.
After 3 long months waiting for my appointment, I finally saw the surgeon. She went over my MRI and Xray results and discussed what was going on.
“A hip labral tear is an injury to the labrum, the soft tissue that covers the acetabulum (socket) of the hip. A hip labral tear can be caused by injury, structural problems, or degenerative issues. Symptoms include pain in the hip or stiffness.”
If you are like me, I had no idea what a labrum was before this. I never gave it any thought. Guess what, you have a labrum in your shoulder too!
So it turns out I have two bone spurs on the edge of my right hip. I guess this is caused by arthritis and the thinning of the cartilage. Or maybe the arthritis causes the bone spurs…I am not entirely sure but at this point it doesn’t really matter. The surgeon said I was “not a good candidate” for surgery.
Apparently labral tears are degenerative and there’s no guarantee that the scope surgery would even work and help. In fact, it could make things worse. It would be a trauma to the hip and could cause things to go downhill and make the arthritis worse which would lead to hip replacement. BUT I am too young for hip replacement because…my arthritis is not “Severe Enough.”
“What Are Hip Bone Spurs? Hip bone spurs can form as the body responds to a breakdown of joint cartilage, which often occurs along with the natural aging process. A loss of cartilage, which cushions the ends of bones where they come together in a joint, can lead to painful bone-on-bone contact.”
“The most common factors that can lead to persistent pain AFTER hip arthroscopy include things that were likely present BEFORE the hip arthroscopy: obesity, low back pain, S.I. Joint pain, Piriformis Pain, muscle imbalances, referred pain and pelvic pain from a variety of causes.”
With my history of back pain, SI joint pain and Piriformis pain (AND muscle imbalances! Because of all the issues I have) it sounds like surgery might make things worse???
The thing with chronic pain is that sometimes it’s manageable and sometimes it’s temporary and there’s a workaround. I’ve been injured so many times but it was all TEMPORARY and I was able to work around it. So maybe I don’t run for 6-8 weeks and just do the elliptical or just do weight lifting.
While I will be doing PT and continuing my weight program to try and strengthen my hips and surrounding weak areas, it won’t “fix” my hip tear. And the surgeon said I shouldn’t run anymore. So this time, it feels PERMANENT and not temporary.
I am processing that right now. It’s been a rough week emotionally. Not only that I am starting to feel like the cortisone shot is wearing off. The surgeon also said I can’t get cortisone shots more than every 6 months because they can also cause arthritis…
No running. No biking if I have to lean over (like a road bike). I can walk, hike, swim, row, I don’t know what else. I wanted to share my news with all of you. I don’t have more info yet.