succumbing to peer pressure

Thursday, January 03, 2008


Giant needle 0 Megan 1! Actually, it was much ado about nothing, as (for once) the topical anesthesia they gave me was totally effective. And, bonus, the contrast dye was not cold, so it didn't feel all weird going in. My hip is still a bit distended and achy, but all in all, not bad. The MRI was also not bad, though holy crap, those things really are small! If I hadn't closed my eyes I definitely would have had some problems with claustrophobia.

Anyway, the results are, I do have torn cartilage in my hip. Which in some ways is gratifying, to know that I haven't just been whining about nothing for the past three months.

So, what to do now? For the immediate future, nothing. It really doesn't hurt all that much, at least not enough at the moment for it to be cost effective to do further interventions. Unfortunately, I am damaging my joint, as we speak, and this tear is a known precursor to worse things down the road (arthritis, hip replacement). Doubly unfortunately, this type of hip imaging and diagnosis is so new that there's no evidence that intervening at this point will do anything to avoid those things down the road anyway. Intermediate evidence looks promising, but at this point, there's just no way to know what the right course of action is.

So I figure for now I'll just sort of keep an eye on it. My doc says if it starts to bother me more I can come in for cortisone shots, which will both relieve my symptoms and reduce the swelling, so may indeed reduce the damage currently happening. I think eventually I will go in for orthoscopic surgery, but my grand plan is to wait a couple of years, until I have a real job, with real health insurance, and real money. Then they'll go in and both fix my cartilage and shave down the asymmetric bit of my femur that caused the tear in the first place. Although it shouldn't be all that invasive, shaving down bone is, well, unpleasant, so I'd like to wait until I can sort of afford to be layed up for a bit.

So that's the news.


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