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Echidna Roland Hastings

Flat on his back after the operation - Photo: Noel Clarke

Fully recovered and ready to get back to work

29th January 2013
Donít you just love the pyjamas. Iíll do anything to get sympathy. Even working with Brett and getting the shit beaten out of meÖ.The end result is definitely worth it. The oohs and ahhs from the audience, not to mention the adulation of the audience for me getting the last laugh.

Well I guess I still get the last laugh. Even though I have had a knee replacement and at the moment Iím recovering from my fifth hip operation, I know that I always come out on top.

My prognosis was Iíd be in a wheel chair by the time I turned sixty. In a minute Iíll be sixty-five, still working and loving life. I wouldnít be dead for quids.

I must admit that this time Iím taking longer to recover. Iíve had extensive bone grafts due to wear and tear. I guess I canít complain because the stem was nineteen years old and starting to come loose causing pain. So much so that in Thomas and Mooreís last few shows weíve virtually stood on stage and delivered the lines without the slap-stick.

According to my Doctor the joint was about to fall apart, so once again my timing was impeccable.

To those fellow Echidnas contemplating hip or knee surgery, donít be put off by the fear of the pain or physio pain post op. I believe that quality of life is so important. If you are in severe pain and you can have the operation, do so because I guarantee that after some minor discomfort you will have no more pain and your quality of life will be enhanced.

Roland Hastings

Up-Date 7th June 2013
Dear Fellow Echidnas
I thought an update on my hip replacement and recovery might at this time be appropriate, so bare with me and maybe these words may help a fellow sufferer.

I had the operation on the 29th. January 2013 and the op. required quite significant bone grafts which I feel even though they were quite necessary, did slow my recovery.

I being one to bounce back after an operation got to a point where I thought, "What have I done." It was really one step forward and three steps back. I have always tended to push myself thinking, No pain no gain:. WRONG. I should have learnt with my knee replacement that the patient MUST do what they are told, DON'T over-do any excersises and above all be PATIENT. Recovery takes time and the end result is worth doing things in MODERATION.

It is now five months since the op. and I feel absoloutely fantastic. My hip is painless and I feel brand new.

Looking forward to seeing you all again soon and if anyone has to have a hip or knee replacement, I would be more than happy to give encouragement, words of wisdom and above all to let people know that pain doesn't have to be endured. The pain that one suffers with a crook knee or hip can be fixed with a replacement. DON'T BE AFRAID.

Roland Hastings
Up-Date 30th August 2013
Hello fellow Echidnas,
Iíll do anything for attention. This time I had a blockage in the bile duct. Unlike Noel Clarke who had excruciating pain, I had nausea. Felt so crook that I was admitted to hospital last Friday the 23rd.
Being such a short-arse, some of the test required were unable to be done. I did manage to have a endoscopic examination where they stick the camera so far down your throat that youíre frightened to fart. This examination proved that there was a blockage, a stricture that needed a biopsy and the bile duct was dilated. Whilst at it a stent was put into the duct to keep it open. On Wednesday I was to have an endoscopic ultra sound and endoscopic biopsy. The former couldnít be done due to the instruments not being able to get down through my body. The latter is hopefully due to be done next week. It depends if the broken instrument for the biopsy is repaired. I canít have an MRI because of the screws and prosthesis. I did have an ultra sound and CT scan.
The good news came today when the Dr. informed me that the initial biopsy came back benign. I still need the endoscopic biopsy (a little more aggressive) but Iím sure all should be well.
Brett Thomas is also waiting biopsy results. He had a mole cut out that came back a little suss. I told him Iíd book Rookwood Crematorium and it would be our last show. Ah the things weíd do for a standing ovation.

Roland Hastings

17th January 2014
The new year has kicked off with Roland being hospitalised at Mt Druitt Hospital with a suspected heart attack, after some tests he was transferred to Blacktown Hospital for further assessments. After a number of tests doctors found blood clotts in Roland's Leg and Lungs which was the cause of the trouble.
I spoke with Roland today and he was in his usual show of confident self, however I do believe he has been given a bit of a shake up this time. Hopefully if all goes well he will be home on MOnday where he is to rest up, take things easy for a while to ensure a full recovery.
Will keep you informed.
Noel Clarke

Up-Date 17th January 2014
Hi all,
Roland Hastings has had a heart scare and the latest is that he has blood clots in his leg and upper body. This news was given to me by another who is also in Blacktown Hospital. Frank Garaty can't get his leg to work despite the many messages his brain is trying to send. Looks like Brett Thomas could be out of a job with a new partnership of Garaty and Moore appearing on the marquee. Would be an interesting double act especially the new tap dancing routine they are working on while shacked up in the same building. More news as it happens.
Alan Dale

21st January 2014
I spoke with Roland this morning and being Roland he was quite up-beat about his progress. He advised me he should be going home tomorrow Thursday and would be keeping his feet up resting for a while.
I asked Roland if he would write a piece for this page when he felt he could handle it so expect to read his version of things though I guess he will keep it a bit entertaining as he has the cheerful way of keeping in mind that their is always someone worse of than he. The little bloke has a big heart.
Stay well my friend.

Noel Clarke

Up-Date 14th March 2014
Hello fellow Echidnas,
All being well itís back on the boards next Saturday the 22nd. March. Brett and I are supporting Greg Bonham at Souths, this will be the first gig since my hospitalisation in January. So Iím back on the exercise bike to build up my stamina so Brett can beat the shit out of me once again. Canít wait.
I have really picked up these last couple of weeks. Back to being able to do things that were beyond me not so long ago. Itís really amazing how the body bounces back. Although I am still living with blood clots that appears to be caused by a Clotting Disease, (unconfirmed as yet) at this point I feel absolutely fantastic. I am on Warfarin which everybody cringes at but so far so good. It appears that Iíll be on that for life. What-ever it takes to keep going, life is too good to be out of.
I would like to point out that my wife and I have had numerous operations and procedures done at the Sydney Adventist Hospital and when I was faced with the prospect of sharing a ward with three other blokes I was more than a little perplexed. My Doctor expressed his concerns about moving me as my condition was quite serious and the care and accessibility to scans, x rays and emergency treatment at Blacktown Hospital was next to none.
Needless to say I stayed and was more than happy to do so. The staff including cleaners, nurses, doctors and radiologists were courteous, friendly and above all professional. Hence my stay with my fellow patients was extremely rewarding, not only from the fact that I was sent home alive but I came to realise that the Public Health System should be congratulated, not denigrated. Admittedly the staff have to put up with so much, including staff shortages and Government cut backs and I take my hat off to them for doing their jobs with such efficiency and care.
Thatís it for now. I hope this is the last health update I will have to write for the next twenty years.

Roland Hastings
The Echidnas The Australian Order of Comedians
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