No pain, lots of gain
Minimally invasive, outpatient hip procedure puts Evelyn Brooks back in action.
Deborah Circelli Published: 6/27/2017
After 20 years riding motorcycles, Evelyn Brooks made the hard decision to sell her Harley after more than a year of hip pain.
Her right leg was weak and she didn’t feel stable enough to ride. She also wondered how she was going to enjoy her wedding anniversary cruise in the New Year and host more than a dozen family members at her home during the holidays.
After seeing multiple physicians and physical therapy and steroid injections provided no relief, she had just about given up hope.
But Brooks’ life turned around in December 2016, when she had minimally invasive, outpatient hip surgery at Jacksonville Orthopaedic Institute. Just weeks later, she cooked and entertained guests for Christmas. In January, she cruised to Mexico.
“The surgery was awesome. It couldn’t have gone more smoothly if I had planned it that way,” said Brooks. She credited her orthopedic surgeon, Carl R. Freeman, MD, and his team for her smooth recovery and getting her procedure done quickly so she could finish physical therapy and feel good enough for her trip. “That meant a lot to me.”
Dr. Freeman found her pain was caused by a mechanical disorder of the hip joint called hip impingement, a condition in which an abnormal shape of the ball and socket causes pain and joint damage of the hip.
Using the newest techniques of hip arthroscopy and minimally invasive surgery, Dr. Freeman was able to correct the disorder and her hip was reshaped to stop the pain. Hip arthroscopy uses a scope to view the hip joint without making a large cut through the skin and soft tissue. The hip preservation surgery avoids a hip replacement.
Brooks, 61, was amazed at how great she felt almost immediately. “The procedure made my pain go away,” she said.
“Dr. Freeman’s bedside manner was great,” said Brooks, who worked in the medical field most of her adult life, including as an office manager, before recently retiring.
“He was very detailed and explained everything before and after the surgery to me and my husband. He took more time than most and more than what some would have found necessary.”
After physical therapy, Brooks said she was able to sit pain free and enjoy her children and grandchildren during the holidays. She even pushed her 13-month-old granddaughter in a stroller.
“At no time did I feel like I was too dependent and not able to do what I wanted to do and have fun with my family,” Brooks said.
While she’s not back on a motorcycle, she’s on her treadmill several times a week and stationary bike almost daily. She said she’ll return to swimming when the weather is warmer.