A New Diagnosis?

When signs of this injury first made themselves known, a whopping 5-months ago, my worst fear was that it was a torn labrum in my hip. Well, guess what? That may very well be a reality.

There have been a number of diagnoses in the last several months, all of which were probably correct, but not the underlying cause. My hip flexor was certainly strained, and I did (and maybe still) have a stress fracture in my femoral neck.

Since things have not healed as quickly as the doctors liked, we were preparing to make a new MRI appointment. When scheduling, I learned something I wasn’t supposed to know, at least not yet.

At first my doctor scheduled the MRI for the first available time, which was right in the middle of the work day. I had that rescheduled for bright and early the next morning at 6:45. The hope was I could get the MRI done, and come into work afterward.

A few minutes after making the appointment, I received a phone message. That appointment time would not work because the radiologist wouldn’t be present. I called back. Why would the radiologist need to be present? According to my doctor’s instructions, the radiologist has to inject me with a dye so that they can see the tear.

The tear? I paused a moment on the phone. This was the first I’d heard that I may have a tear. It was then that she fell silent. She double checked, and confirmed that these were the instructions from the doctor.

Although it is not certain that a tear is what this is, it does make a lot of sense. It is possible that the tear occurred somewhere around Bridge to Bridge, when I thought the injury first happened, and subsequently became worse when I continued to exercise on it. The stress fracture could have developed later. That would explain how the nature of the injury has evolved between rest and activity, at some points more painfully than others.

Although the pain has subsided, and this has become a lot easier to deal with in recent weeks, the hip clicks and pops a lot, which also suggests a tear. In my completely unqualified, not very medical opinion, I think that’s what it is, but I think it is a small tear.

I have a lot of doctor friends, many of whom have suggested that this could have been an overuse injury. That could be true, but it really has not felt that way. I was in tremendous physical shape this past year, possibly the best shape I have been in my entire life. When the injury took place, I had actually been winding my activities down for the end of the season, and not pushing hard. In hindsight, if I were to get an overuse injury, that probably would have occurred in the spring when my miles were at an all time high. A one-time, out of the saddle tear just seems to fit better

Tuesday is my MRI. If the news is bad, I may find out something next week. If not, it’ll be when I meet with his assistant on 2/28.

A couple friends of mine pointed out that Lady Gaga also had a hip labrum tear, and had to cancel her tour. Nothing against the musician, but I doubted I would have anything in common with her. That said, my tour will also be canceled if this is a tear, but for how long is the question.


10 responses to “A New Diagnosis?

  • bgddyjim

    I clicked the ‘like’ button, don’t take it the wrong way, brother. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  • Richard Ridlehuber

    Getting the proper diagnosis is the best way to get the correct treatment with long term benefits. I know this setback is difficult to deal with, but it is just another thing to overcome – and YOU CAN OVERCOME IT !

  • Noah Hawk

    Dude, if it makes any difference, my old running coach Margie Shapiro is a pro triathlete who was laid up with a torn labrum when I met her – she’s KATN at IM 70.3 races all over the place now. You’ll make it through too, ’cause you gotta go to France and see the Alps.

    • aaronwest

      That’s very encouraging. Thanks, Noah. I know that this would heal and I could function fine, but would not be able to continue such an active lifestyle. I’ll do what I can to get fixed, and hopefully will enjoy a fraction of Margie’s success.

  • suzecycling

    This must be such a drag and so much more frustrating than you let on in your blog … I would be crazed. Or maybe crazy. Hoping they will get the diagnosis straight … so as to speed up the treatment/recovery. Best of wishes!!!

    • aaronwest

      Frustrating at times, but I will not complain too much about sitting on the couch, watching excellent TV and movies while being waited on hand and foot. 🙂

      In truth, it has been a difficult few months, but I try to remain positive. There are others who have it a lot tougher, and I know that this will pass eventually and I’ll resume the adventures I live for.

  • Jim Brennan

    I feel for you, my friend. Keep the faith.

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