Hip Resurfacing gets Gordon Strachan back in the game
Gordon Strachan is a professional international football manager and former Premier League footballer, appearing for the likes of Manchester United, Leeds United and Coventry City. Having started to feel the effects of his hip arthritis in his mid-40’s, he said: “Work was a problem. I was an active coach who liked to be on the field with the players and walking on maybe only 50 yards I was hobbling so that wasn’t a great sight for the football players.”
When playing and coaching football the other players began to notice Gordon was developing a problem, telling him he was “always going to one side and afraid to hit the ball.” Admitting he never really took it in; Gordon was told he would need a new hip at the age of 48.
“Physically and mentally it was a problem for me – it just wasn’t right. It was embarrassing for me, I’ve always prided myself on being fit and healthy and I played in the Premier League till I was 40” said the former midfielder.
It was his expansive top level football career, with over 600 appearances, that ultimately led to hip arthritis and being right footed meant he was pushing off and weight bearing on his left side – the side which was affected. Gordon struggled along despite the constant pain and being uncomfortable: “There’s absolutely no chance of me having a hip resurfacing till I’m 50!” Gordon later conceded that this was the wrong mind-set to have and that delaying the operation can sometimes result in having unsuitable bone quality, resulting in the need for Total Hip Replacement surgery instead.
Strachan, capped 50 times for Scotland, was managing Celtic Football Club and had just guided his team into the last 16 of the Champions League (losing 1-0 to eventual winners AC Milan) - despite his hip pain. “Standing on the side-lines for 90 minutes meant that evening would be really painful” said the manager before joking, “As a football manager you don’t get too much sleep anyway! But I was tossing and turning with a sore hip at the same time!”
Having heard vaguely about the Birmingham Hip Resurfacing and its benefits, Gordon spoke to his chief scout at Celtic – who was a former patient of Mr McMinn’ with two BHRs. Surgery was scheduled for April 2007 after Gordon’s Celtic had won back to back Scottish Premier League titles, “I timed my surgery so that I could finish the league season and have a good six weeks to recover for the next pre-season.”
“The hospital stay was terrific I felt I was in good hands and the treatment I got was great” said Gordon recalling his weeklong stay in The Hospital – where Mr McMinn carries out all his surgeries.
Two weeks post-surgery, Gordon walked unaided to lead his Celtic team out at Hampden Park and guided them to a 1-0 win over Dunfermline AFC in the Scottish Cup final. Laughing, Gordon remembers: “We didn’t play very well so watching the game was more painful than the hip!”
Gordon, who played in two World Cups, believes a sensible approach to recovery is needed and that it’s vital to listen to the advice from Mr McMinn and his team saying, “I stuck to the plan and because of that I can do anything I want now, literally anything.” Now going to the gym and running three times a week Gordon’s renewed enjoyment of sports and activities is clearly visible, he said “I run, I play football and tennis, I can play golf. I was even jumping of a pedalo into the sea with the grandkids in Spain a couple of weeks ago!” before adding “I just feel better about myself.”