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From Jeannie Low from Haverfordwest

After going through the normal channels of consultations regarding my inevitable hip replacement, I was very concerned at being told that the ultimate results were uncertain. I couldn’t get a prediction of the time scale as to when, or even if, I would be able to return to work as an indoor cycling instructor. Would I walk with a limp, which I obviously wanted to avoid, or be able to continue long distance walking which is my main hobby?

Feeling extremely nervous about the whole affair, I began to do research into various methods of replacement and read a lot of positive information regarding minimally invasive surgery. Consequently I located a surgeon, Mr Maheson, and was given an appointment very quickly for an initial examination and to discuss the process in full.

The consultation was informative and positive and Mr Maheson left me in no doubt that he was the consultant with the credentials and confident attitude to perform my surgery.

I was given a date for the operation within two weeks. After being admitted on Friday 10th April, 2012 my whole experience of The Spire Hospital Cardiff was excellent. The nursing and hospitality staff were efficient, friendly and cheerful and the accommodation spotlessly clean and comfortable. I felt in capable and caring hands at all times.

I was fully informed of the procedure by a visit from Mr Maheson prior to surgery and also visited by the anaesthetist who also explained, in full, what was going to happen. At no time did I question myself, “Have I made the right decision”.

After the operation, I received every assistance to ensure I was as comfortable and pain free as possible. The latest equipment was used to ensure the fast and most effective healing. The inevitable post-operative discomfort was kept to a minimum. The most amazing part was that two hours post-surgery I got out of bed and walked to the toilet. I feel this was nothing short of a miracle! The incision at the front of my leg was stapled and shorter than I had anticipated. The visitors I had on the afternoon following the operation were amazed how well, bright and comfortable I was. Mr Maheson visited me during the afternoon and said he felt the operation had gone very well and was delighted in my recovery.

After a couple of sessions with the physiotherapist, walking along the corridor and up and down stairs, I was given a series of achievable exercises. I was discharged at midday on Sunday 12th equipped with all the information and medication I required and walked out of the hospital unaided!

The next few weeks entailed doing the exercise given, regularly during the day. The second day at home I was able to join my friends at the Leisure Centre for a coffee. None of them could believe how well I was walking. Each day I walked a little further. Week two I had a practice ride on my home exercise bike with great results.

I visited the nurse at my GP’s surgery to have the staples removed and the wound checked and all was fine.

My progress increased with the weeks and on week seven I started back to work as an Instructor (Spinning).

During my follow-up consultation I had an x-ray. Mr Maheson showed me on his computer that my hips are level with only a millimetre or so differential.

Now I walk without any sign of a limp. No one would ever know that I have had a hip replacement. I reached celebrity status at the Leisure Centre where I work and still think my recovery in such a short time was a miracle and my friends call me “super woman”.

I have started teaching a new class using weight training machines and aerobic steps for a cardio section. I am getting no repercussions or discomfort doing these additional exercises despite them being load bearing and moderate impact exercises.

Obviously, a hip replacement is not what anyone would desire but to be able to sleep pain free, work and live my very active life again without going through agony is wonderful.

I have arthritis in my other hip which does not give me any discomfort at the moment but inevitably it will and I will need another replacement. I will have no hesitation in asking Mr Maheson to perform the procedure. I cannot thank him enough and would highly recommend him as an excellent and competent surgeon, thoroughly professional consultant and really nice person.