Back to Montpellier yesterday, this time to see the hip surgeon. On word of mouth recommendations I have chosen a woman surgeon – a first for me – called Mme Marion Bertrand. First impressions very good, starting with the secretary, who was friendly and informal. (She spotted my iPad and said she could not bear to be parted from hers for a moment when at home, and later in the evening emailed me asking me if by chance I was the Frances Allen, eminent American computer scientist!)
Mme Bertrand was efficient but also friendly, informal and sympathetic. She looked at my scans with exclamations of ‘Oo la la’, remarking that the lower spine was distorted and in bad shape, but then agreed the hip had to be dealt with first. What I liked is she showed me the scans and explained clearly the disaster areas and what needs doing. (I can’t reproduce this here as she has kept the scans for further investigation.) Basically the cemented socket of the left hip has crumbled away, and the bone above it has a slight fissure. Though the replacement in the femur itself is not in too bad shape, it will have to be removed as well, in order to get at the socket. And as this is a type not used on the continent, it could be very difficult to get out and she will probably have to cut down the bone and start the prothèse further down the femur. Sounds awful and she was not underestimating that this could be a big operation, with far longer recuperation than the original replacement. But I have no choice: my mobility is diminishing and pain increasing daily.
For this reason she said the six week slot I had suggested between family visits in June and August was too tight to allow for problems. So we have fixed on the 4 September for this operation. I will now contact all summer visitors advising them that I’m pretty immobile this year and sadly tell my September visitors I won’t be at home.
The op will be in the Clinique St Roch – the same one as for my hand, so with any luck the anaesthetist’s and cardiologist’s reports will do for the two. After just a few days I will transfer for réeducation, this time to le Vigan, where I could be for a good month.
Heyho, it looks as if the right knee and then right shoulder will have to wait till 2015 and 2016!