Hip Next Steps and Marathon Possibilities

by - Thursday, June 08, 2017

Ok so yesterday I really just needed to get out the feels about my hip. If you read that post you know I have a lot of them, and writing things down has always helped me process things and think more clearly.

In this post, I'm going to talk more about what the plan of attack is moving forward.

So after my intense flair up of pain earlier this week, I texted my PT and he agreed it was time to get an MRI to make sure we weren't looking at any sort of structural issues in my hip area.


He squeezed me in for a last-minute appointment Tuesday night so that he could write up a report and fax it to my primary care doctor so she could write a prescription for the MRI.

In true, wow the American healthcare system is ridiculous fashion, my doctor couldn't write a prescription for the MRI without seeing me in the office. Granted I really love my doctor, but it's frustrating to have to take time off work and pay for an appointment basically just to get the script for an MRI.

My doc asked some basic questions, did a short exam and agreed an MRI would be a good next step just to make sure things weren't funked up in my hip joint.

Now I need to wait for my insurance company to pre-approve the MRI (because of course there's another step), and then I will finally be able to get it scheduled.

Based on the evaluation my PT and another one of his colleagues did on Tuesday, they don't think the MRI will show any sort of structural damage. They put me through a bunch of tests for all different things, and I seemed to pass them pretty decently.

The best part of physical therapy...when they cover you in electric shocker things and massive ice packs.

I have to say that was a huge relief on my part. I know we won't have an answer for real until after the MRI, but after being so concerned earlier in the week, it was nice to hear from more than one person they still think I'm largely dealing with some muscular problems.

My doc had a couple of potential other concerns that are also in the back of the mind of my PT as possibilities if this isn't muscular. They're a little scarier to me than a labrum tear, so I'm just filing those away for now and trying to focus on what we can actually control.

In the meantime, my PT wants to try some dry needling. Dan mentioned this as a potential option two weeks ago, and I initially balked for a moment because needles make me pass out.

But at this point, I'm willing to try anything that will get me back to running (and in general being pain free) again. So I have my first session scheduled for that next week.

Dry needling is not acupuncture, but it's a similar concept. My PT will stick super tiny needles (they promise they don't hurt...I still think I will pass out), into all the trigger points along my hip/hip flexor in an attempt to release them and as a result reduce my pain, improve my range of motion in the hip (which at this point is basically nonexistent) and help get me back on my feet again.

I'm basically crossing my fingers and toes that it will work. A muscle issue will be so much better to deal with than something structural like a labrum tear or some sort of hip impingement or anything else that would pretty much require surgery to fix.

I don't know what my chances of running the Chicago Marathon are. Right now I can't run at all. I haven't really run since April when I did an 8 and 6 miler in Vegas. Every time I think about not being able to run this race, tears prick into the back of my eyes. I don't know that it's off the table yet entirely, but it's not looking good.

Perk of being on East Coast time -- an early morning run to the Welcome to Vegas sign on the relatively quiet Strip. #instatravel #nofilter #lasvegas

I was so excited when I finished grad school in December to register for another marathon. I was excited to have the time and energy to dedicate to training, and I was over the moon when I got into the Chicago lottery. It's a race I've always wanted to do, and I didn't really know when I'd be lucky enough to get in.

It seemed like all the stars perfectly aligned for my post-grad school marathoning comeback. To think I might not get to do this race now is really hard and really upsetting.

But I'm trying to keep things in perspective (some days I'm better at this than others). I'm hopeful that I'll have some better answers in a couple of weeks. I'm hopeful that the dry needling will help and that the MRI won't show anything too bad. And I'm still holding on to the tiniest bit of hope that Chicago isn't totally out of the picture yet.

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  1. I've had acupuncture before but never dry needling. From what I understand, it is the same needles so you really won't feel it at all. It's a great idea! Go into it with an open mind and you might be amazed by the results (I was).

  2. Fred and Tina8:50 AM