Saturday, December 21, 2013

Injury Update - GOOD NEWS!!!

Met with my orthopedic this past Tuesday. Praise the Lord, I have good news to share!

For several years now I've been experiencing aching in my hips and occasional sharp, pinching pain, especially after dance.  For awhile I never though anything of it, 'cause hey, pain is part of being a dancer and  ballet especially stresses the hip joints and  my hips were expanding. No big deal, it's normal. Or so I thought... Until my coach and I basically figured out after a long time that me getting my side splits was probably impossible for me and that my overall range of motion was getting worse and worse when it had once been decent - even though I was still following the same stretching routine and haven't grown. Not that my flexibility was ever fabulous like Svetlana Zakharova, but pretty average for an american dancer who didn't start until she was older.
Eventually things were getting worse. First  my coach and I noticed a big loss in range of motion. I wasn't as flexible and ended up forcing myself in to stretches and poses and was constantly pulling muscles as a result. Gradually I started to notice more oddities with my movement. My Italian Fouettes were getting really really bad (not that they were ever great!). Then my regular Fouettes got weird, especially when done en dehors (spinning to the outside (left leg up turn to the left, right leg up turn to the right)). The whole class was rather disturbed by the creepy, snapping/crunching noises occurring when I'd whip my leg out and around. Then I started having constant aching in both of my hips. Eventually the pain got so bad that I couldn't sleep because nothing was comfortable, everything hurt. Sitting hurt. Standing and walking hurt. I was constantly having to take Tylenol and spend lots of time with my trust friend Mr. Ice Pack (yes I'm aware that Tylenol is dangerous, but at the time I was allergic to everything else. Eventually we figured out that I don't react to Advil, but I do to Aleve. Complicated.). So obviously dance was getting really hard for me. I was able to participate in some classes, but only attended the bare minimum, no private coaching sessions or extra 30 minutes of conditioning after class or participating in lower level classes just for more practice. I couldn't do most of the things that dancers of my level were supposed to be doing. Most exercises I just sat and watched, wishing I could be doing it. It killed me to have to sit out. My coach wasn't very happy either. But she knew something was really wrong, because I'm a very pain tolerant person and love to dance and would dancing if I could. Sometimes I did but I always regretted it.
After that semesters recital, which amazingly I did get  a solo in, I finally got an appointment with my orthopedic. 
First he twisted my legs around. Then did x-rays. I got diagnosed with FAI Hip Impingement, which, for lack of a better word is basically a growth defect that back in the 90's they didn't know to check for when your a baby. Basically FAI is the exact opposite of Hip Dysplasia. Rather than the socket being too shallow and ligaments surrounding it not being able to hold the socket together, my hip sockets are too deep and small and closed-shaped. The grinding sounds I'd hear during fouette variations? That was actually bone on bone, in my hip socket, rubbing on each other. This abnormal friction caused by doing what a human body was not meant to do rubbed off bone and caused the bone to build more bone onto it, filling the hip socket even more. So basically the ball and socket joint in each of my hips don't fit each-other and ballet exacerbated  the problem, gradually building up more and more bone and thus more pain and less range of motion.
The first step in my treatment was "surgical" injections of cortisone (anti-inflammatory) and some sort of painkiller.  That helped clear up the pain I was feeling in the joint. But I was still having a ton of pain in my lower back and the sides of my hips. This pain was my muscles and tendons trying to stabilize a very unstable joint, causing some bursitis and major muscle stress on muscles that were doing jobs they weren't supposed to be doing.  
So next, my orthopedic sent my to airrosti. Airrosti is a combined therapy of traditional physical therapy, chiropractic, and deep myofacial release massage. After  about 6 in-office treatments, and tons of at home exercise, I am no longer in pain and for the most part, I am active again! 

This past Tuesday, I had my first checkup with my Dr. It was really awesome to go into the office and not be there expecting to get bad news or be there to be put into a cast or something! (been there, done that. I'm known to be accident prone!) Although though honestly, I had been having some anxiety about it before the appointment - but that's just me. It absolutely made my orthopedics day when I told him I'm not experiencing any pain! He gave me the all clear to start running and doing more things. I shouldn't get back into ballet however because of the high hip flexion that ballet demands. I should avoid excessive hip flexion because that will stress the labrum, the cartilage lining the hip socket. If the labrum tears, that would cause excessive pain and I would be forced to have to have the surgery. The surgery for hip impingement is worse than a full blown hip replacement and I'd have to have it done on both sides. So I definitely do not want to risk having to have it, if possible! He said that when these cortisone shots that I had this past summer wear off that I can have boosters once a year if I need them. Not bad at all. 
So for now, no reason to schedule another checkup unless I have pain again! 

I'm so thankful that I can start being more active and that I'm not in pain! God has been so good. It's still hard not having ballet, but I'm starting to adjust. I loved to dance. It was my sport, my art. On my 16th birthday I performed in what most likely is my last ballet recital ever. But that's OK. There's a season for everything, and that season of my life has past. It was good while it lasted. Now onto something new! 

Thanks y'all sooo much for your prayers and support! I'm so very thankful for all of my friends!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please no anon messages.
We're all entitled to our own opinions, but please, be nice :)
Thanks for reading and commenting!