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How a PAO is done – in layman’s terms March 1, 2010

Posted by hiphoperation in The op.
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A doctor and fellow PAO patient recently described how a PAO is done:

The cutting is done in part with mallets and chisels (exactly like a carpenters!) and a small electric saw… The leg is moved from straight to bent at hip and knee throughout operation but very little twisting, to ensure freedom of joint movement and to get to the joint. He [the surgeon] puts a big screw called a swhanz screw into the pelvis near acetabulum and once all the bone cuts (or osteotomie) are done uses this to mobilise the acetabular fragment and with use of x-rays gets it into the best position. Then uses 3-4 (4.5 mm wide and 10-14cm long) screws to fix it in place.

He then reattachs the two muscles he cuts to get to the hip join back to the pelvis with fibre wire. Stops all bleeding and closes. It’s obviously a lot more complicated than that and takes about 2-3 hours.

Simple as that!

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Operation day (Tuesday) September 25, 2009

Posted by hiphoperation in The op.
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I had hoped to keep a regular diary whilst in hospital but I think I underestimated how tired, spaced-out and sick I would feel. So here’s a catch up on the last three days.

I arrived at UCLH at 7am on Tuesday but it wasn’t my turn for the butcher’s block until 12.30pm. Apart from the boredom of waiting, the worst thing was not being able to eat or drink anything.

I was very brave up until the final moment and started to panic as they began pumping me with anaesthetic. Silly, as this really was the point at which there is no going back. I’m not really sure what I was scared of, probably just knowing that things are going to be a bit of a nightmare for the next few months.

I woke up 4-5 hours later feeling quite spaced out and with various tubes sticking out of me. After about an hour in recovery, I was taken up to my ward which I have been sharing with three VERY nice ladies who have all been looking out for me and for each other. We are on an orthopaedic ward so everyone has had dodgy hips or knees and is wizzing around (or attempting to) on zimmer frames or crutches. It is nice to see others reaching different stages in their recovery – something to look forward to.

I can’t tell you yet what they did to me but I have a nice big, black scar. It is glued together so there’s no bandage or anything to cover it up. This is good as I don’t have anything to remove but also gross as I can see how horrible it looks. The surgeon came over and said that it had all gone well. I forgot to ask how many screws they have put in.