Friday, June 4, 2010
Don't let your babies grow up to be bullriders. The husband would kill me for saying that. But unless you want to be in constant pain, I'd pick another career path. The husband rodeo'd for 20+ years. With all those years, came many wrecks. Now he gets around like an old man.
Besides his neck, back and hip problems, he has really bad shoulders. He had one shoulder surgery prior to us meeting. Two after we got together. A fourth was suppose to be in 2007 but didn't happen. His right shoulder has been bothering him for years now. He has no range of motion. Really, he can't lift his arm. But the worst of it is the pain. Many nights he has to take Tylenol PM just to sleep. His hand goes numb. And if he's working and it gets pulled, TERRIBLE pain.
So when he finally decided he needed to make a doctor's appointment, I knew it was bad. Husband never asks to go to the doctor. Plus he always used Tandy (the PBR doctor) and going to a "regular" surgeon was a big step for him. He doesn't trust anyone but Tandy. I made him an appointment with the sports medicine doctors I went to about my achilles. He met with the shoulder surgeon and had an MRI done.
Yesterday, I met him at the doctor to see what the MRI showed. I wanted to hear for myself what the doctor had to say. Plus the husband was still leery about the doctor. I found the doctor to be very thorough. He showed us the MRI images. Discussed all the options. Explained what different procedures would accomplish.
He told the husband that he had the shoulder of an 80 year old. And pretty much the only option to alleviate the pain (which is the husband's #1 priority) would be a joint replacement. However, he didn't want to do the traditional joint replacement where they actually cut the entire joint out. Due to the husband's age, he wanted to do a less evasive replacement. He explained that regular replacements last about 20 years. Since the husband is in his 30s, that means he would need something else to be done in his 50s. If they cut the entire joint out, there won't be anything to work with. So the other option is to grind the ball down and put a cap on it. Then use donated meniscus, from a knee, in the socket to provide cushion. This is a relatively new procedure so there's not a lot of data on how long it will last. But even if it lasts only 5-10 years, it's better than the alternative. Then by that time, maybe science will have another option.
First things first, the husband and I have to arrange some health insurance stuff and get everything lined out. Looks like it will be the first of next year before he can have the surgery. He's pretty nervous about it all. He doesn't say it but I can tell. Maybe 6 months will let him prepare himself for it. Or maybe not!
Created by The Wife at 7:12 PM