My Hip Labral Repair Surgery and Recovery

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I recently had hip surgery to repair a torn labrum on my left hip. I share my experience with surgery and my recovery so far!

woman squatting with a barbell

Hey friends! I’m back with another health update as promised 🙂 If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen some posts about my recent hip surgery. I got a lot of questions from people who were going to have this surgery, so I wanted to write down our experiences so far as a little encouragement for people who are getting this done.

Earlier this month, I had an arthroscopic surgery to repair torn labrum in my left hip, and also shave down some of the bony impingement I had as well. My surgery went great, they didn’t have to do a ton of work, and I’m on the mend! I’m 3 weeks out from surgery, and I’m healing up good.

I plan to keep adding updates to this post or create new posts as I continue on my road to recovery, as well as on Instagram and Facebook so make sure to follow me there as well.

Please note: these are my personal experiences, and not meant to replace any advice you receive from your medical professional. Also, every person is different and every procedure is different, my experience with this surgery is not a guarantee that your experience will be similar.

Back in September, I had torn the labrum in my left hip when I was training a client and showing them how to do a deadlift. I was doing everything correctly, the weight was light, and I only did a few reps (about 3), but everything was lined up just right with my existing FAI hip impingement to tear the labrum, of course I didn’t know it at the time.

My hip got sore for several days, and once the muscle soreness went away, I had a nagging pain in my hip. I began to suspect a labral tear and asked my physical therapist for some good hip specialists that she knew of and started the process of looking for a doctor.

Picking a hip specialist

Originally, I was going to go see a hip surgeon that specialized in complete labral reconstruction surgery, and his office said I was a good candidate for the surgery. Rather than just repairing the labral cartilage, reconstruction removes the labrum completely and replaces it with cadaver tendon stitched in place.

It would have been quite extensive: 6+ weeks on crutches and about 6 months recovery time, along with very strict guidelines about movements, sleeping, etc.

Well, after working remotely with that particular surgeon’s office, it all fell through with him and I had to find another surgeon. Some of his office staff were dragging their feet, they wouldn’t move forward until I was able to get a final verdict from work comp about my case (the injury happened while I was working as a trainer), and to top it all off, they wouldn’t even get me on the surgery schedule until I paid a $2500 deposit. Just to be on their schedule.

I complained to their office, and they said it was in their contract (I read through it and it said nothing about not being able to schedule surgery without a deposit). After 3 months of back and forth with this doctor’s office, I walked away and found someone else.

Everything was done long distance, so I had never even spoke with the doctor himself or even saw him face-to-face, I had only spoke to his staff and arranged everything remotely. In hindsight, I’m so glad I decided not to go with this doctor (divine intervention?) because as it turned out my labral tear wasn’t extensive enough to warrant a full reconstruction.

And looking back, not even meeting with the doctor beforehand does make me feel uneasy. So I’m glad I switched gears.

Labral tear repair surgery

Last year, my physical therapist had given me the names of two hip specialists that did great work with labral repair/reconstruction. I ended up researching both of them, and decided to go with the doctor that specialized in reconstruction, but I ended up seeing the doctor nearer to me that does both.

My new hip doctor was very conservative in his treatments, so he wasn’t going to worry about releasing my IT band with the diamond incision if he didn’t feel I needed it and if I didn’t have trochanteric bursitis on my hip.

He double checked my MRI and there was no bursitis, so he wanted to do more conservative treatments for my left IT band, which always happened to be way better than my right IT band. My right IT band has always been a troublemaker.

One thing he also planned on doing was releasing my left psoas during the surgery if I needed it, but as it turns out, once he was in surgery, my psoas didn’t need released.

Labral repair recovery equipment

We met with the medical equipment supplier at the surgery center before my surgery, and he fitted me for my hip brace (to be worn for 2 weeks post-op), crutches (also 2 weeks), and ice machine attachment for my hip (we already had an ice machine from my husband’s foot surgery in January), and a CPM machine (continuous passive motion machine).

The ice machine attachment (nor the actual ice machine) and the CPM machine weren’t covered by insurance, so I had to pay for those out of pocket. The CPM machine was for rent, so we got it for 3 weeks but returned it during my 2-1/2 week follow up doctor appointment.

I was a little nervous about how my hip surgery would go, but I had a feeling that everything would go great (unlike my last surgery). The surgery center was great, I ended up having a spinal block for anesthesia instead of general anesthesia, and everything went smoothly. The doctor was even ahead of schedule so we started a little early!

Post labral repair recovery

Oddly enough, I was more nervous about taking Percocet after surgery than anything else. Narcotics don’t make me feel great, and I’ve had *ahem* digestive issues with them after previous surgeries. Suffice it to say, being constipated after abdominal surgery is NOT fun.

Right after surgery, I had hip pain (of course) but didn’t feel too bad until later in the afternoon when I started moving around on my crutches. They gave me Percocet right after surgery, and the Percocet made me sick once I started moving around 🙁

After that I was able to get by with just Tylenol. I was determined to avoid more Percocet if possible, and fortunately my hip pain was pretty tolerable for me and I was able to manage it with regular Tylenol.

I wore the hip brace for 2 weeks while moving and sleeping, but I could take it off for resting, sitting, icing, and using the CPM machine. Sleeping with the brace was a bit rough, it caused some back pain for me.

Right now, I’m currently 3 weeks out from surgery and I’ve been recovering pretty well. I got off crutches earlier this week and started physical therapy 2 days ago. I’ve been walking a little funny this week since my hip flexors are so tight my biomechanics are completely wonky, but we’ll get them gently stretched out over the next few weeks, along with my now tight hamstrings.

It’s been weird seeing my flexibility start going away. No fun!

My doctor has me set up for 12 weeks of physical therapy, so I’ll be in PT for 2-3 days each week for 3 months, which is what I had anticipated would be the case. I’m following up with my doctor again in 4 weeks, and he’ll take a look at my right knee while he’s at it and the pes anserine bursitis in both my knees.

So what’s up with all my chronic leg problems?? Thanks to a little big thing called femoral retroversion.

I recently had hip surgery to repair a torn labrum on my left hip. I share my experience with surgery and my recovery so far! | thefitcookie.com #health #fitness

Femoral retroversion diagnosis and my chronic leg problems

Back when I saw my doctor in January almost 3 months ago, he mentioned that I had femoral retroversion, a fancy way of saying that I my femurs rotate outwardly. My case is probably more bone deformity than muscle imbalance since they said it was something that I would have to live with for the rest of my life. Bummer.

So now the answer to all my leg issues was finally explained. For years, I couldn’t figure out why I kept having multiple issues with my legs and hips, and this explains it all. My doctor said it was all connected: the retroversion, FAI, IT band problems, and knee bursitis.

One of the ways orthopedists can treat femoral retroversion is by femoral osteotomy, an extensive surgery in which the femur is cut in half, rotated, and pins and rods are added. My doctor felt that was too extreme a treatment for me (and I agree!), so we’re going to address issues as they arise.

Where do I go from here?

Moving forward, I’m not sure what to expect this year or the coming years with my body or my exercise. I’m going to get my right knee looked at next month since I’ve had 5+ years of ongoing IT band problems with it and more than likely bursitis as well.

I’d like to get back to running again, but will probably have to make sure that I keep my distances lower. Not sure with how my legs are built they can handle long distances and many miles. I had always wanted to run a half marathon, but not sure if that is feasible at this point with my chronic leg issues.

My weight lifting will have to change a bit to focus on smaller muscle groups to make sure that my body is staying balanced. More hip exercises and fewer squats and lunges. More isolation exercises for my legs and fewer compound exercises. Lots of core exercise and hip stretches.

Overall, I feel good about my decision to stop teaching group fitness and stop personal training to just focus on The Fit Cookie and blog more. I sit more (not a good thing), but I’m not forcing my body into painful fitness routines because I have a class schedule to keep. My fitness is my own right now, and I really enjoy that!

I’ll try to continue to post more updates on my hip repair healing. I’ve been posting a lot more of that on my Instagram account lately, so if you’re not following me there, let’s connect!

My labral repair hip surgery recovery timeline:

I’ll keep updating this as I continue to recover from surgery! Remember: each surgical recovery journey is different, my recovery may not look like yours, and vise versa.

  • Week 1: pain has improved a ton and I’m getting around well with crutches. Just taking Tylenol for pain.
  • Week 2-3: Got off crutches at about 2-1/2 weeks, and also started physical therapy the same week! Gentle stretching in physical therapy to start, with some easy exercises. I’m walking funny right now since I can’t extend my left leg back as far as normal when I walk, but this will improve with gentle stretching.
  • Week 4: physical therapy 2-3 times weekly, my hip mobility and discomfort is improving each day. My muscles are very tight, so the gentle stretching they have me do is helping tremendously. I’ve been back to normal housework for the past couple weeks, just no lifting more than 20 pounds and I have some minor restrictions with hip movements.
  • Week 5: I was able to do the recumbent bike in physical therapy this week and was released to start doing the recumbent bike and light walking exercise at the gym!! So I can now start working out as tolerated and within reason, starting out small and gradually building up. My incisions are almost completely healed (just a few tiny bits of scab left), and once those scabs are completely gone, I can do water walking and pool workouts.
  • Week 6: adding more movements to my physical therapy routine, like small squats, side walking (without a band at first), and can walk for up to a mile at a time to keep the impact off my hip (don’t want too much pounding at first).
  • Week 7-11: continuing to add more exercises at physical therapy, like leg press machine, retro treadmill (backward walking, etc.), light hopping ladder drills, unlimited walking, etc.
  • Week 12: followed up with the hip specialist again for my 3 month/12 week checkup, and he said I’m cleared for all activity except for running. He said I needed to wait another 4 weeks to begin running to help prevent hip flexor tendinitis. Since I scheduled my IT band release surgery for 6-1/2 weeks after my 12-week hip follow up, I decided not to run again until my knee heals up from my knee surgery. My hip will be 100% by then!
  • Week 15: hip is doing great! I have some tightness that will take a while to continue to resolve, but if I continue to stay active and stretch, it will improve. At my 12 week appointment, my doctor told me that I needed to continue to stay active and exercise to keep scar tissue from forming in my hip joint as the year goes on. So I need to keep moving!
  • 4-1/2 months: I had my knee surgery about 4-1/2 months after my hip surgery, and the sitting from my knee surgery has made my hip tight! As my knee heals, I have to make sure that I’m adequately stretching my hip flexor on my surgery side to keep the scar tissue from re-forming in my hip and under the incisions. So it’s important for me to make sure that I’m continuing to stretch and stay active!
  • 5-1/2 months: my IT band on the surgical side after my hip surgery has gotten tight from slight neglect after my knee surgery, so we’re going to work on that in physical therapy. I also need to start foam rolling it again now that I am released to do that after my knee surgery. Let the pain/rolling commence!

1 year post surgery

I just passed the 1 year mark after my surgery 4 days ago (March 7th), yay!

So far things have been doing great, I’m back to running as my knee allows (I’ve struggled with getting my kneecap in the right place after my knee surgery) and have returned to my full workouts (barring anything my knee disagrees with of course).

Right now my only limitations are my bugger of a knee (different side than my hip surgery), but that has been getting better and has improved.

My hip hasn’t bothered me at all running or weight lifting, but I have noticed that my surgery hip gets tighter much easier when I do glute exercises and stuff, so I have to keep working on the knots in that hip.

The aching in my hip joint if I sit too much has improved, but I’m still quite tight in my inner thigh muscles. I have some adhesions and things I need to keep working on from surgery.

Foam rolling has become my regular hobby ?But it has helped a lot, along with my percussion massager that helps me to get into some of those hard to reach places (like my hip flexors and my surgery scars) that I can’t get with the foam roller.

I still don’t have very good internal rotation of my surgical hip. I didn’t have very good internal rotation before the surgery anyway, so it’s not really something that was drastically changed.

I still have discomfort when I try to do a knee to chest stretch with that hip, so I’m not sure if that will always be there or I just need to work on improving that mobility somehow. Something I need to ask the nurse about at my surgeon’s office I guess.

74 thoughts on “My Hip Labral Repair Surgery and Recovery”

  1. I am current.y 4 months out from FAI and labrum repair surgery. I am a very active 68 year old who is beginning to wonder if I will ever be back to normal. I continue to have PT and as the months progressed have continued to have pain. At first it was in my inner thigh, then my upper quad. Now at 4 mo. I have excruciating pain in my glute and lower in my quad. I can barely balance my weight on my surgical hip. With the tightness in the muscles of my glute and quad I am barely able to walk. I feel like I have gone backwards in my recovery. Any thoughts?

    Reply
    • Hi Kathy, I’m really sorry to hear you’re not doing well 🙁 Have you discussed this with your surgeon and PT, do they have any ideas about what might be causing the worsening pain? I know someone who didn’t have a good surgery and had to get their hip surgery re-done again by a different surgeon. This may not be the case for you, but if you don’t feel like you’re making progress or improving, it might not hurt to get a second opinion from another doctor or find another physical therapist.

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    • I had surgery on my right hip two years ago and my left hip about 4.5 months ago. I would say that my right hip took about 18 months before I felt completely normal and could move in any way without pain. It’s a long recovery. I have dry needling done for my quad and glute and it is life changing. I highly recommend finding a PT with this training as it expedites the loosening of the muscle knots.

      Reply
  2. Thank you for posting this. I am 3 weeks post op for FAI pincer and labrum repair surgery. I will be on crutches for 6 weeks.

    I have a question; Did you have any pain in your “good hip, back” after surgery? Since post op day 11 my good side started with spasms and is so painful, only at NIGHT. Which means I can’t sleep. Did you ever experience that?

    I have no pain in my operated hip…. yet still doing only passive movements. 🙂

    Reply
    • Hi Alyson! I did have some pain in my non-surgery hip since I was putting so much weight on it getting up and down and moving around. I’d make sure that you’re still strengthening and stretching that non-surgery hip, and also check with your physical therapist to see if there are other things you can do to help to make sure you don’t develop pinched nerves, tendonitis, or bursitis on that side.

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  3. Hi, there! Thank you so much for writing about your experience. I am 39 and I’m looking at a labral repair surgery as well as a full hip replacement in the other hip. I lifters heavy weights for years and just stopped in August because the pain became unbearable. May I ask how old you are? I’m trying to gauge my recovery based on age.

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  4. I am so glad I found this blog! I will be having labral tear surgery 3 weeks from this day. Mine is from wear and tear, not sure what made the original tear start. I woke up one day with a lot of extreme groin pain that did not go away. When I went to an orthopedist, I realized I had nagging pain in the middle of my glutes for months. Anyway, I am an active person and fighting to lose the last of my menopause weight. It will not be gone before this surgery. I am fit, but not the weight I want to be, and as I practice moving in my house with my MobiLegs fancy crutches (I have 3 sunken rooms to navigate, but bedroom is on first floor), I realize how hard it is. I am 55, have arthritis in my hands, an artificial finger joint and damaged ligaments in the right hand, and arthritis in both shoulders from sports and a lifetime of hard work, AND I also have nerve damage on the left lower back, so my “weaker” left leg now has to be the strong one. That hip and leg ache with just a few minutes of crutches. My goal is to build up that way a bit so my shoulder arthritis doesn’t kill me when I simply MUST use the crutches. Anyway, your info has been helpful! A real life person. I know everyone’s journey is different. I look forward to being over it all. It’s hard to pay the piper after a lifetime of hard work and using the body hard. This will force me into retirement from my farrier work. Any tips and comments are so welcome! I’m terrified of the side effects possibilities of the prescription blood thinner for a month (I cannot take aspirin), and I am allergic to anti-inflammatories, which my surgeon prescribes a specific one to prevent calcification and bony growth at the surgical site. So, I’m on my own with that. I don’t know if I can continue my natural supplements I use for inflammation, and they don’t have answers. I detest taking medications, so being required to is stressful to me. I am praying a lot about having peace. Thanks again for your information!

    Reply
    • Hi Christine, I’m so glad this was helpful for you! I hope you can get some relief and navigate those medications, I had to stop taking my supplements about 1-2 weeks out from surgery. I’ll pray for you! Come back and let us know how your surgery and recovery is going 🙂

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  5. I really appreciate this blog. I also had the unfortunate diagnosis of retroverted acetabulums. I am almost two weeks post-op to fix the FAI and labral tear. It is comforting you returned to weight lifting and running!

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  6. Thank you so much for this blog. It has been really helpful. I am 8 weeks post op. Any suggestions on improving the look/feel of the incisions? You are appreciated!

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    • Hi Rayna, I’m so glad this was helpful! I’d check with your doctor or physical therapist, but after a certain amount of healing time you can begin to massage the surgery scars with oil or lotion to help break up scar tissue. My physical therapist showed me how to massage my scars for both my hip and my knee once they were fully healed to help with breaking up scar tissue. Definitely check with your doctor or PT first to make sure when you can start doing that. It won’t make the scar fade, but it will help the scar flatten and not “pucker” from attaching to the tissues under the skin as much. Plus it helps with better movement as well if you don’t have scar tissue pulling on your skin and underlying tissues when you move. Later on you could also use a percussion massager over the scars or pull up on the scars and roll the tissue to work on scar tissue, but again I’d check with your doctor or PT about that first.

      Reply
    • Hi Glenn! So 5-1/2 months out from my hip surgery I had already had my knee surgery by that time, so I wasn’t doing much by way of weight lifting then. Right before my knee surgery once my hip was recovered, I still couldn’t do deadlifts or squats thanks to my knee, so I can’t really say how I might have been able to do deadlifts at that time. But I don’t think I could have done very deep deadlifts if I had, my hip joint was still tender and had limited range of motion. Even though it’s been almost 2 years, I still haven’t done barbell deadlifts at all because that’s how I initially injured my hip, and I’m honestly a little scared to try doing that again since my hip still doesn’t have great range of motion. Plus I still have FAI impingement in my right hip and I don’t want to injure that one, too. I might try doing some again eventually but with a smaller range of motion only within the range that is comfortable for my hip that had surgery.

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  7. Thanks for sharing. This was really insightful. I have to have the same surgery and I am so so nervous. How long before you could go for a long walk or just do basic things around the house?

    Reply
    • Hi Mari! It was a couple weeks before I could do more around the house. I would do some small things while I was still on crutches like picking up around the house, but once I was off crutches I could do more. I can’t remember how long it was until I was able to go on long walks, but I remember asking my physical therapist when I was able to be released for longer walks. I think it was 4-6 weeks maybe? I can’t remember exactly, but the doctor and the physical therapist will be able to guide you in that. The first weeks are just focusing on recovering properly with physical therapy and the CPM machine if you get one. I hope everything goes well for you!

      Reply
  8. I have had both the femoral osteotomy (terrible and lots of pain afterwards), but I now have hip extensions and hip IR. I am 2 1/2 weeks out from labral repair and clean up of the joint and I have had no pain in the hip and have taken zero pain meds. I am struggling because it feels so good right now, and I want to do more.. but they tell me I can’t get.. but I have hope that I will be able to run and squat again .

    Reply
    • I’m so glad you’re feeling better after you’re surgery! Definitely take it easy, it’s tempting to want to do more since you’re feeling good, but you’ll get to return to your favorite exercises soon. 🙂 I do fine with running nowadays, but I still don’t have great mobility in my hips with squatting. I just don’t do heavy squats anymore or deep ones.

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  9. Thanks for sharing your experience. I had a labral tear repair surgery left hip and am 1 week post op. Hoping for a speedy and complete recovery.

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  10. Thanks so much for sharing. I’m having labral tear repair next week from femoracetabular impingement. Ugh, I teach yoga, barre and fitness classes as well as attend and run and box. The pain and loss of function has got do bad after complaining for over a year. Finally got an MRI and MRA and mow surgery. I’m happy to hear it helped
    you and I can hopefully be back in action sooner rather than later. Best of luck in your healing.

    Reply
    • Hi Brenna, I would be interested to see if you are back to practicing and teaching yoga. I am also a yoga teacher and 3 weeks post OP for FAI Pincer and labrum repair. 6 weeks NWB.

      Would love to hear how you are doing now.

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  11. Sara thank you for the detailed write up. Im currently on week 15 of my FAI recovery and im really scared I tore my knee during recovery. Its a very long and tough recovery process.

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  12. Hi Sarah!
    I have FAI in both hips, confirmed labral tear with a lot of pain on the left, recently getting slight soreness in the right as well. I’m curious if having your surgery caused soreness in your non-operated hip from having to compensate, and how you are managing avoiding a labral tear in non-operated hip with your increased physical activity. I’m down to no exercise and not being able to sit at all so surgery seems inevitable on the left side but it’s hard to know how to avoid tearing the right side? Don’t want to be afraid of exercising! Thanks for sharing your journey and hope you are well!
    -Lili

    Reply
    • Hi Lili! After my hip surgery, I did notice some soreness and stiffness in my opposite hip because I was compensating and using that hip so much more, but once I was able to move more, I did a lot more stretching on that side and it eventually went away (also with correcting my compensation over time as well). Some of that soreness might be normal if you’re compensating, but definitely check with your doctor if you think it’s more than muscle soreness.

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  13. Hi I’m trying to get some infomation on lifting weights ie squatting dead lift I had a my right hip done about 6 years ago and my left 5 years ago both we’re fai. I’ve been cycling on the road but with know problems but I fancy doing weights again I was told not to run anymore so I haven’t but I’d love to get back to doing squats and dead lifts but can’t get any info on it as I don’t want to damage my hips anymore.

    Reply
    • Hi Tavis, I’d probably see a physical therapist for at least one or two sessions to figure out if doing those exercises would be beneficial for your hips or not. Depending on your hip structure and your surgeries, doing squats and deadlifts may or may not be okay for you, but a physical therapist would be able to assess you and give you some guidance based on your personal needs.

      I’m able to do squats, but I do lighter weights right now because of my kneecap, we’re still trying to get my kneecap to align properly after my knee surgery, it got pretty loose. But I have avoided conventional deadlifts since that was actually the thing that cause my labral tear. I still do stiff leg deadlifts or Romanian deadlifts for my hamstrings and single leg Romanian deadlifts (single leg RDLs) for glute strength and single leg stability, neither of those bother my hips at all.

      If you decide to try things out, make sure you start out slow, low reps, no weight or very little weight, and you’re warmed up before hand with dynamic stretches and hip mobility stretches within your personal range of motion.

      Reply
  14. Hello! im 20 and I am having my labral tear surgery at the end of July, I am a little nervous. Were you able to sit for a decent amount of time a month after your surgery? I am schedule to go back to college 28 days after my surgery and my school is four hours away.

    Reply
    • Hi Lauren! I did pretty good with sitting after my hip surgery, although I did have to get up frequently and move around to keep things from tightening up in my hip. I’d visit with your hip surgeon and physical therapist about gentle stretches that you can so during and after traveling and sitting for long periods. Good luck with your surgery, I hope it all goes well! 🙂

      Reply
      • Hey! Thank you for sharing your story. I’m currently suffering from a labrum tear with impingement and it was diagnosed via MRA. I’ve been in pain since May and ended up in the ER on 6/11 due to severe sciatica. It’s been a hot mess. I’m scheduled for a cortisone shot on 8/19 but the past 2 days I’ve been unable to walk or sit. Some days the pain is manageable and sometimes I don’t feel pain. But these past 2 days have been horrible. Can’t walk or stand too long either. I’d love to skip the injection but doctor says it needs to be done for diagnostic purposes and insurance.

        Reply
        • Hi Ro, I would definitely go with your doctor’s orders. Sometimes shots can be avoided and sometimes they can’t be, but if he wants to use it for diagnostic purposes than it will probably be helpful. I had a diagnostic shot in my hip during my dye injection MRI, but it was bupivacaine if I remember right and not cortisone. It helped them with diagnostics and my hip felt pretty good for a few days until it wore off.

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    • Hi Lauren! My name is also Lauren, I’m 21, and I just had my second labral/impingement repair surgery. I’m 3 weeks out currently, and my pain has been very manageable! I’m not sure what your surgeon’s recovery protocol will be like, but I’m on crutches for three weeks, and during the fourth week, I’m currently going back to putting weight on my surgical leg. Sitting was absolutely not a problem for me, however, as I’m putting weight through my leg again, soreness has been present, so I’d be mindful of that! Wishing you a successful surgery and a speedy recovery!

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  15. Hi – Thanks for your story and blog. Was extremely helpful to read. I’ve been diagnosed with a labrum tear in the right hip with an MRI (not MRA). It came on gradually, after a few 50mile bike rides and some leg raises that my PT gave me after my meniscus surgery in the right knee. The PT thinks that the atrophy in the right leg after the meniscus surgery put a lot of strain on the hip and the ortho thinks that the labrum has been torn for a while but that the atrophy, bike rides and the leg raises have acutely and suddenly bugged the tissues surrounding the labrum temporarily. He injected Hyaluronic acid and steroid into the hip about 12 days ago and my pain is even worse after the injection. It’s really sore and the pain is a constant dull aching solid 4 out of 10. Sitting is a problem! The ortho says i need more time to evaluate the injection (at least 4 weeks) and that in his experience they’re supposed to work very well, especially given my labrum tear in his opinion is not sudden. But i’m getting worse and not better since the injection and i’m pretty scared about surgery. Would love any of your thoughts and if you have any experience with the above please! Thanks in advance. Yours truly.. in pain

    Reply
    • Hi Adam, I’m sorry you’re in so much pain, it’s frustrating 🙁 I never had an injection in my hip before surgery except for the dye and numbing injection they did in my joint with the MRI and it felt pretty good for a few days after that because it had lidocaine in it. So I’m not sure about the other kinds of injections since I didn’t have those. I do know that before my surgery my hip pain progressively got worse and I really felt it while sitting. Sometimes while I was walking the flap of torn tissue would catch in my hip and it would hurt sometimes and then not hurt other times.

      It’s interesting how people have injured their hips. Mine was from doing deadlifts since I already had FAI, a friend of ours injured his labrum getting on the floor to pick up his son, and another lady we know injured hers when she was doing burpees (which is something I’ve been avoiding lately, too). I hope that you can get some answers! Keep me posted with how everything goes for you 🙂

      Reply
    • Hi Adam,
      I had the lidocaine with steroid injection and like you, the pain was immediately worse. It took some weeks for the pain to return to my steady state of 4/10. I had my labral repair 2 weeks ago. I had my surgery on a Monday, I was off the crutches by Wednesday, and off my cane by Friday. I’m still sore but the surgery has significantly improved my pain. Hopefully, you will be able to get the repair done sooner rather than later. Good Luck. Nikki

      Reply
  16. Hey! Im glad you are doing better! This has been a very frustrating experience for me as well. I’ve been a runner for most of my life (I’m 53) I’ve Beverly had any injuries or broken bones until two years ago when I experienced the torn labrum. After much research, had a pretty extensive arthroscopic repair January10th. I am now 12 weeks post surgery. I’ve had ups and downs and was hoping I could get back to running and weight training soon. After two runs incorporating a couple of 1/4 mile runs, my leg Is experiencing numbness and twitching. I had this before my surgery and it was starting to get better. I suspect that the psoas (sp) muscle might be the culprit. My surgery was performed by an extremely well known surgeon, but the release was never mentioned as an option. Did you have any numbness and twitching before or after your surgery? I also have the knots in my glutes! Wondering if the psoas release should have been done in conjunction with the repair to the torn labrum.

    Reply
    • Hi Connie! I’ve not really had any numbness or twitching associated with my labral repair surgery at all (before or after). But I DID have numbness in the front of my leg after my bladder repair surgery in 2018 that took months to go away (not really twitching though).

      What happened was I had a hysterectomy in 2018 and my surgeon accidentally cut my ureter during the surgery, so I had to have a second emergency surgery in another town that night. The urology surgeon stitched my bladder to my psoas muscle as part of the surgery (called a psoas hitch, normal for that type of repair). My nerves in my psoas were pretty annoyed and irritated, so I had numbness on my quad for months after that, although I don’t think I had any muscle twitching.

      So I didn’t have numbness from my hip repair surgery but definitely did after my bladder repair surgery from my psoas nerves. My surgeon didn’t think I needed a psoas release, but someone I know who had the same surgery with my same doctor did end up getting a psoas release with his hip surgery, just depends on what the surgeon felt was needed.

      I’d visit with your doctor about it and see what they say, it may be irritated nerves like with my bladder surgery, but they’d be able to let you know for sure 🙂

      Reply
  17. I just happened to come across your blog while endlessly searching the internet for info on hip labrum reconstruction. I’m scheduled for surgery next week, and I am terrified about being put under general anesthesia. You mention that you had spinal anesthesia for your surgery…I didn’t know that was an option! How exactly did that work…were you awake for the procedure or did they still give you something in addition to the spinal to put you to sleep?
    Thanks for your blog, it definitely helps to hear from someone who has gone through it.

    Reply
    • Hi Rhoda! They gave me a spinal and also something to help me sleep during the procedure as well, so I wasn’t awake for it. If I remember right, they gave me Versed before my spinal, then gave me sleeping gas as I went in to surgery. Everyone does their anesthesia a bit differently, I had general anesthesia with my knee surgery instead of a spinal like I had with my hip. So it all depends on the surgeon and what they prefer for the procedure.

      I hope your surgery goes well! ❤️

      Reply
  18. Hi there! Thank you for sharing your journey! I read through this blog and said to my husband that you and I have almost spot-on hip/knee/IT issues. I’ll be having surgery in the next 2 weeks and my concern is driving. We’re actually moving (20h drive) out-of-state in about my 10th or 11th week of recovery. Obviously, we’ll have to make more frequent stops, but in your opinion, how doable do you think that would’ve been for you? I’m 38, HIIT coach, usually quite active but recently have had to modify a lot due to hip. Oh, also, did they offer you anything else besides Percocet? I have the same reaction (2 cesareans) of nausea. Thanks very much.

    Reply
    • HI Natalie! I think that would have been pretty doable at 10-11 weeks. Lots of stops and stretching of course, your hip might ache a bit during your drive as well. Are you able to break up your 20 hour drive into 2-3 days? That might help, too.

      The surgery center didn’t offer me anything beside Percocet, but I don’t remember if I asked for anything else either. I bet you could visit with them beforehand to check and see if they’d be able to give you something else. When I had my hysterectomy and ureter repair in 1 day (long story short my doctor cut my ureter during my hysterectomy and I had to have a second ureter repair surgery that night), they gave me Celebrex that seemed to help a lot and didn’t have the side effects of narcotics. I’d ask them what other options are available for you 🙂 Good luck with your surgery!

      Reply
  19. Hi I am having an MRI today as its suspected that I have FAI & a labral tear. I am a competitive body builder so this is impairing my training. I am scared that if it is this & I have surgery that I wont be able to compete again. I am a 54 year old female. Can you lift heavy again now > As in squats, deadlifts, leg press & hip thrusts? Thank you

    Reply
    • Hi Cathryn! It’s been almost a year since my hip surgery and I’m pretty much back to my normal workout routine. I would have returned to my normal workouts sooner, but I’m still having kneecap issues from my knee surgery last year that keep me from doing any heavy squats.

      I haven’t done deadlifts again yet since that’s what injured my hip originally and my hip mobility hasn’t improved much after my surgery (which my surgeon told me that the surgery wouldn’t likely improve my ROM in that hip a ton so that was something I expected). I still have impingement in my right hip and still have not-so-great ROM in my left hip (surgery hip) so I have been avoiding heavy squats and deadlifts (as well as my troublesome knee that is still improving).

      That said, I’ve gotten back to lifting heavier for everything else, doing glute exercises, barbell hip thrusts, upper body and ab workouts, etc. It has taken some time, but I’m nearly back to my regular workouts since my knee is what’s really holding me back right now.

      I hope everything goes well for you!

      Reply
  20. Found your blog in a google search for what to expect during recovery from hip labral repair surgery. I’m glad I did. Thank you for taking time to share your experience! My husband (41) is scheduled for his surgery next week and so far, his Dr has not mentioned anything of a brace, ice machine, or CPM machine, only crutches. In your experience, was this equipment a must-have for you? Or do you feel you could have done just as well without the equipment? Was there anything else during your recovery that you found very helpful for healing at home? I appreciate any tips you have 🙂

    Reply
    • Hi Katie! I think that the CPM and the ice machine were super helpful for my recovery, the ice machine keeps the swelling down so healing is faster and the CPM helps with keeping the hip joint moving but in a controlled way that helps prevent scar tissue. I’m not sure if I would have healed up quite as well without the ice machine and CPM, but some people do okay without them. An ice pack doesn’t quite get as cold or work as well as the ice machine does. We opted to use the one we already had from my husband’s foot surgery a few months before my hip surgery.

      You can always ask your doctor about the ice machine and CPM. People could always go without them if they didn’t want to pay for them (my insurance didn’t cover some of the stuff), but my surgeon had a motto that “motion is lotion for your hip” so keeping it moving several times a day is good, even if it’s just having someone move his leg for him in a controlled way.

      At night, you’ll want to make sure that when he’s sleeping on his back, his foot on his surgery side doesn’t move outward. The first doctor I had talked to about surgery uses special boots at night to prevent this, but the surgeon I ended up using didn’t require special boots, but his nurse told me to make sure my foot wasn’t falling outward while I slept. I tried to use pillows around my foot to help keep it from falling to the side.

      Sitting on the toilet gets interesting after hip surgery lol. It helps to have something to help yourself up and down, like a bar, tub, or counter close by.

      I hope your husband’s surgery goes well!

      Reply
  21. Hey Sarah stay strong 2018 I had FAI Labrul clean up with Psoas release cam impingement everthing felt fine intell 7 months later I went on a mountain bike ride and i road to much and tore my labrum and I knew it saw my Dr. and long story short he sent me back to my GP! So I got a 2nd opinion and got a xray MRI and only to find out I had tears in bolth hips so I was supper bumbed…
    So I got bolth hips done today left hip is 10 weeks post op and my right hip is 1 week post op today….so your not alone my friend ohh yea and forgot to mention 2017 had shoulder surgery for a torn Labrum so ive been in and out of the gym for a while but it is what it is you know what im talking about one day we will get back to life !

    Thanks for your story best of luck to you and yours !

    Chase R

    Reply
    • Thank you for your encouraging words, Chase! I definitely have felt so out of whack the past 2 years, I’ve had 5 surgeries in 2 years for various things, including my hip and knee surgery this year. My knee was still causing problems so I took a couple weeks off of workouts until I could get a brace for it, but I got my knee brace yesterday and started back to workouts this morning. So far so good, I think the brace helped with my knee! My hip has been doing pretty good, I still have some scar tissue that tries to form and limit mobility so I have to stay on top of that. My knee is more limiting than my hip, I’m praying my knee continues to heal correctly so I can get back to my favorite fitness activities 🙂

      Reply
  22. Question for you: Did you ever have any really bad days post surgery? Where you thought maybe you re-tore the injury? I’m three weeks post op and my pain has been improving a little bit each day until the last two days. I feel like I took a major step backwards and the pain feels like it did pre-surgery. Just wondering if you experienced any days like this or if I should be worried. Love your blog and knowing I’m not alone!

    Reply
    • Hi Angie! I didn’t really have any issues with too much pain in my hip until later when I had my knee surgery and scar tissue was trying to form in my hip from sitting too long. Other than that, I didn’t have any big relapses with pain. I’d definitely check up with your doctor on that. I’m so glad you found me! Keep me posted with how you’re doing 🙂

      Reply
    • Hi , angie I’m 15 weeks post operation hip labram repair with 4 anchors and bone shaved away in the joint . Answer to your question I’ve had many days where the pre operation pain is there and wondered has it gone wrong . This is where I’m at now 8 mile mountain walks pain free and I’m back on my road bike doing 30mine rides now pain free get me pace of 17mph tho . I started on the mountain bike big the steep climbs aggravated the hip . Have faith and patience easy to say but it’s true . Best advice I’ve had is when it flares up listen to your body and back off . Good luck

      Reply
      • Thanks for this Martin – I am 8 weeks post hip labrum reconstruction. Nervous as hell that it hasn’t worked with similiar pre operative pain. Hoping it was a simple flair up to getting on the stationary bike and going a little too hard.

        Need to get into a positive headspace and not over think things. How are you now?

        Reply
        • Hey was wondering how your hip repair progressed after this setback? I am 5 weeks out and still have the pinching I felt prior to surgery. Looking for some hope…

          Reply
  23. Hi Sarah,
    Im scheduled to have hip labral tear surgery in march 2019 at University of Pennsylvania.
    I would like to get another opinion. Do you have any suggestions of competent drs in this area.
    I am 62 yrs old.

    Reply
    • Hi Susan! I can’t make any any recommendations for hip doctors in your area, but one way you can get some good recommendations is by visiting a local physical therapist and asking them for recommendations. Since they work with many patients post-surgery, they are very good resources for which doctors are better than others oftentimes. That’s how I found my hip surgeon was through a recommendation by my physical therapist.

      Reply
  24. i had labral hip tear surgery on 03/08/19 and the surgery went well….however the recovery has been long and painful! I was 4 weeks post op and started physical therapy and everything was going well then all of a sudden after two weeks of PT I started experiencing horrible pain on the side of my leg. I couldn’t hardly walk for two weeks. they started needling my leg and cupping and that was not helping, they gave me an injection to my hip and that maybe worked for about 4 hours. then the came up with the idea that my IT band was inflamed so they gave me steroids that did not help after one week. they gave me a second round of steroids and finally got a little relief. they did xrays and MRI’s of my back to make sure I wasn’t having back problems that were causing the leg pain an ruled that out. they now have come to the conclusion that I do have an inflamed IT band and I have scar tissue that is causing my range of motion to still be so limited. I am still walking with a slight limp…if I do a lot of walking then my IT band starts to hurt. I am due to see the doctor in a month and he mentioned doing a procedure to loosen up the IT band…not sure I want to do surgery again…this has been the worst experience of my life. I have had other surgeries and this has thrown me for a loop really bad. I have been depressed, I can’t work out, cant walk for long distances. I am a very active person so this has affected me so negatively. I am getting a second opinion and maybe I can get some answers! I was lookin to see if anyone else has had IT problems and Scar tissue problems after surgery?

    Reply
    • I’m so sorry that happened to you Irma! I have had some tightness in my IT band after my hip surgery from scar tissue and stuff, but it hasn’t gotten really bad. I need to watch my IT band after my hip surgery since I could feel that it has gotten tighter now and I have a history of IT band problems. I just had IT band release surgery on my right knee (opposite side as my hip surgery) since that IT band has bothered me for years, and so far so good, but the recovery has been more painful than my hip surgery (so far I’m 1-1/2 weeks out from my IT band release surgery on my knee). I know that some doctors will do an IT band release up by the hip at the same time as labral hip repair surgery, but I didn’t have that done since my hip surgeon didn’t think I needed it.

      I do know that scar tissue is a big deal after surgery, it can mess up so many things! My physical therapist had to do a lot of massage and stretching to help me work through my scar tissue, and it’s mostly gone now but still have some tightness sometimes (it’s been 4 months since my hip surgery).

      Keep me posted with how you’re doing!

      Reply
      • Hi Sarah my 19 year old son is getting FAI surgery next month and I wanted to know if you want for pre-surgery bloodwork, the Doctor was saying because he is young he doesn’t need pre-surgery bloodwork. I found that odd and felt he have it done.

        Reply
        • Hi Judy, they didn’t do any pre-surgery bloodwork for me, just the pre-surgery vitals checks (blood pressure, etc.). If you visit with his doctor some more, he might be able to better explain his reasoning behind that decision.

          Reply
  25. My 18 year old daughter had the same surgery two days ago. So far her recovery is exceeding my expectations. She is off the narcotic, is happy and alert. She only really needs help from us to get her ice packs. She has gone on small outings each day – to a cafe yesterday and to the library today. In three weeks she starts college with her first semester in Costa Rica. I’m nervous she won’t be well enough but the doctor seems to think she will be. She can continue her PT there.

    Reply
    • Hi Kelly, it’s great that she’s doing so well! I just had knee surgery last week, and I think that my hip surgery was less painful than my knee surgery 😮 I hope everything goes great for your daughter, it sounds like she’ll have an amazing school year in Costa Rica. What is she studying there?

      Reply
  26. Hi Sarah. Thank you for your blog. I have a labral tear in my left hip and a tear in my IT band. My orthopedic told me that labrum needed arthroscopic surgery, but the IT band would heal on its own. The surgeon I was referred to said to hold off on the labral surgery until my IT band heals and has referred me to Physical Therapy, which I start tomorrow. I’m to return to the surgeon in six weeks. I do have an appt. with another surgeon for a second appt. I’m so pissed at being totally sidelined. Reading about you is helping me to cope with that. Was your surgery arthroscopic or open?

    Reply
    • Hi Robin! So sorry you’re dealing with this right now, that is so frustrating 🙁 My hip surgery was arthroscopic, I had just 2 small incisions (they were only about 1/4-1/2 inch long for each other them). My hip healed up great, just some tightness in my hip flexor on that side if I sit too long, so I have to make sure I’m stretching it out a lot. I can technically start running now, but I’m having my knee surgery in just 1-1/2 weeks, so I’m going to wait till that all heals up before I run again (about 6-8 weeks or so).

      Keep me posted with how everything goes for your hip surgery and IT band! I’ll be posting about my knee surgery as well soon once that’s done.

      Reply
  27. Hi! I just got the hip surgery to remove bone fragments last Thursday (so i’m about 6 days post-op right now). They thought I tore my labrum but it just ended up being very irritated. I was wondering how quick your recovery was? They never gave me a brace to wear over my hip, which i’m not sure if I am supposed to.

    thanks!!:)

    Reply
    • Hi Jordan! That’s good news that they didn’t have to repair the labrum! So far, I’m about 3-1/2 months out from surgery and have no restrictions except for running, which I can’t do for another 2 weeks (to prevent hip flexor tendinitis). So my full recovery will be at about 4 months, but that will be different for you since you didn’t have a labral repair. Did you ask your doctor about how long your recovery would be? They’ll be the best one to ask about how long they think it will be for you due to your specific circumstances. I hope you have speedy healing!!

      Right now I’m back to just about everything I’d normally do for exercise except running and high impact activity. But since I’m having knee surgery next month, I probably won’t worry about doing any running or anything high impact until that’s healed up, too (about 6-8 weeks from that knee surgery).

      Reply
  28. Hi! I found your blog a year ago, when I got diagnosed with FAI and a labral tear. Well , after feeling better than not feeling better, I finally got it fix on 4-8-19. I also had the psoas released. Sorry to hear you have other issues, I will be looking forward to following your journey

    Reply
    • Thank you Amy! I hope your surgery went well and you’re healing up okay. How are you feeling so far? Keep me posted with how you’re doing! I’ve been regaining mobility each week with physical therapy, so I’ve bene moving better. I follow up with my surgeon on Monday, so we’ll see how it goes 🙂

      Reply
      • I am healing ok, every day gets a little bit easier. One of the hardest parts has been the resting up part. I am a go go go girl with 4 kids and not used to needing help with anything. I’m going to physical therapy 3 times per week since 1 day postop and make improvements each time! I also go back to the doctor next week for my first follow up appointment! Thank you for your blog! It helps to read about other people’s journeys!

        Reply

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