shutterstock_426306655.jpeg (shutterstock_426306655.webp)Approximately three years ago, Celia Johnson, a resident of Wheeling, began experiencing what she initially considered as an 'annoying discomfort' in her right hip joint. Over time, the discomfort progressed into chronic hip pain, severely limiting her range of motion. As the pain intensified, Johnson developed a noticeable limp while walking.

In November 2019, Johnson received an official diagnosis of hip osteoarthritis. It was at this point that she made the decision to address her persistent hip pain. Like many others in today's digital age, she turned to the internet to find a surgeon who could provide a solution for her new hip.

Hasham Alvi, M.D. has been an orthopedic surgeon for nine years, specializing in total hip replacement. He recommended a partial hip replacement using the anterior approach for Johnson, who was in need of a hip replacement. Unlike traditional hip replacements done from the side or back, this approach involves a smaller incision in the front of the hip. By opting for this procedure, Johnson benefited from reduced muscle trauma, decreased pain, faster recovery, improved mobility, shorter hospital stay, and lower risk of hip dislocation. Despite being informed about potential risks such as infection, bleeding, and blood clots, Johnson believed that the benefits of the surgery outweighed these risks. The primary goal of the surgery was to restore the normal ball and socket joint of the hip with a new hip implant.

When asked if she was nervous about undergoing surgery during the pandemic, Johnson stated, 'Once I made the decision to have the surgery, I was looking forward to that part of the process being over, COVID-19 or no COVID-19. I was actually worried that I wouldn't be able to have the surgery in June as planned due to the initial restrictions on elective surgeries during the pandemic. However, I wasn't concerned about having the surgery during COVID-19 because I was very comfortable with the precautions I had taken and the protocols in place during my pre-op visit with Dr. Alvi. The pre-surgery call I received from NCH also reassured me that the necessary precautions were in place to ensure my safety on the day of the surgery.'

One of the hip replacement surgeries was performed on June 18. 'Two weeks later, I was walking comfortably, and within a month to six weeks, I had regained normal daily functions.'

Throughout my entire experience at NCH, from the admissions process to the discharge process, I felt extremely safe. I didn't come across any other patients during my stay, and everyone, including myself, wore masks at all times. The nursing staff went above and beyond to ensure my comfort during the entire hip replacement surgical procedure.

Reflecting on my journey, if there is one piece of advice I could give to others in a similar position, it would be not to wait. I truly wish I had undergone total hip arthroplasty sooner. Prior to meeting with Dr. Alvi, I didn't fully understand the extent of the issue with my hip and the level of discomfort I was experiencing.

It is worth noting that when experiencing hip pain, the typical medical response is to explore alternative treatments before considering surgery. These may include pain or inflammation medication, walking aids, or physical therapy. However, in Johnson's case, after three years of persistent pain, she realized that these approaches were no longer sufficient. 'After three years, I took it upon myself to consult with an orthopedic specialist, which ultimately led me to Dr. Alvi.'

In a related discussion about hip surgery and the importance of finding the right orthopaedic surgeon for issues in hip joints, it is crucial to consider the expertise and experience of the surgeon. Hip surgery can significantly impact a patient's quality of life, so finding a skilled and knowledgeable orthopedic surgeon is essential. Whether it's addressing hip pain, joint deterioration, or other hip-related conditions, consulting with an experienced orthopedic surgeon can provide valuable insights and guidance to explore the best treatment options available.

'I felt confident and comfortable with Dr. Alvi right from the very first appointment. It's quite extraordinary because I actually contemplated canceling the initial appointment several times due to my discomfort with the idea of undergoing a hip replacement. However, I am immensely grateful that I followed through with the appointment. Dr. Alvi truly understood my hesitation, and I appreciate his guidance throughout the entire process.

Now, almost five months after the surgery, I can confidently say that the results have been remarkable. Not only am I able to walk without any pain or limp, but my range of motion has significantly improved as well. It's hard to put into words just how happy and relieved I am to finally walk without pain and without a limp. Sometimes, I have to remind myself that it's real.

The decision to undergo hip replacement surgery was driven by the need to relieve the excruciating pain caused by my damaged hip joint. I am incredibly grateful that Dr. Alvi and his expertise were able to provide the relief I desperately needed. This surgery has truly been life-changing for me, allowing me to regain my mobility and improve my overall quality of life.'

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