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Please begin with an informative title:

"You need a new hip" the Orthopedic Doctor told me like a mechanic telling me I needed new brakes on my truck.  So matter of fact.  No big deal.  Lots of people get new hips these days.

Except it is a "big deal" for me.  

I've made it 57 years without so much as a stitch, a broken bone, a single surgery.  The last day I was in the hospital was the day I was born 57 years ago.  I am very, very fortunate to have made it this far and remain healthy for the most part.  Oh, a few minor health issues now and then, but nothing major ever.  Healthy all my life.  Until now.

More below the fold...

Intro

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A year ago my hip started hurting a little.  I ignored it.  Then it got a little worse and I realized something really was wrong.  Mentioned it to my doc when I went in for my annual checkup.  "Better have it checked by a sports and ortho specialist" he says.  Referral.  Appointment in 4 weeks.  The day comes.  I'm hurting and can barely get my sock on my right foot anymore.  X-ray.  It looks bad.  Lets get an MRI.  "Yep, your hip is totally shot" he says.

I'm floored.  I can't be falling apart - I'm still young.  You shouldn't need a new hip until you're in your 70's or 80's I tell myself (and others).  New limitations:  no sleeping on your right side.  But I've slept on my right side since I was a baby!  No more long walks or standing for a long time.  What?  I can't go to Mardi Gras?  Don't carry anything heavy.  Don't get down on the ground.  Don't cross you right leg over your left.  How do I get my sock on?  Ok, you can do it for that only.

I refuse to do pain meds even though it hurts all the time.  Too many horror stories.  Just started physical therapy and Dry Needling.  It helps some.  I can also do epidural steroid shots for a while doc says.

But I have a more immediate problem:  Insurance.  My small employer says they're gonna dump it at the end of this year and let us all fend for ourselves, and they're not joking.  We have a good plan - a "Cadillac" plan in fact.  It pays 90% after deductible.  The Ortho Doc says I'm young for a hip replacement, but he'll do it when I'm ready.  He wants me to wait a few years if I can bear it.  I'd like to wait too.  But what happens if I lose my insurance at the end of this year?  I can handle paying my deductible and 10% of the cost after Blue Cross gets done discounting it now. But I have no idea what insurance I will have next January.  It could be a costly financial decision to wait on the hip replacement.

I'm seriously thinking of going ahead with the hip replacement this summer while I still have insurance and know the cost.  Is it crazy to do that?

Would you get a new hip if you were in my shoes?        

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