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To Earl, Howard and all of the wonderful people who are being touched, educated, supported and most of all UNITED through this blog, I am afraid it is time for me to give some not-so-good news.

I am meeting with a new surgeon tomorrow (for that all important second opinion), as I now have a series of x-rays taken this Monday that shows that not only have the bands holding my femur together let go or broken, the ‘join’ in my femur where it was split to remove my previous prosthesis has broken down and for the first time I have highly visible specks of “a metal like material” (as per report), read Cobalt or Chromium, in my quadricep, hamstring, all around the femur and hip joint.

It was this last one that has absolutely floored me as I have never seen this before and after speaking to my colleagues at the hospital I work at, they haven’t either!

Apart from a photo taken by my surgeon mid operation last time around, and of course the blood tests, this is again a ‘real’ reminder of the poison that these bastards have put in us!!!!!! (I will try to get copies of these xrays copied to a file that I can post here so all of you will know what to ask questions about and explanations as to why!)

As a 42 year old, with a rapidly disappearing career, devastated family and the sort of quality of life that I am sure all of you can relate to on the highest level, I am officially pissed off and devastated at the same time! This to me has become a lot more than a case of corporate greed and negligence, failure to protect all of us as patients and the intensely personal issue that I am sure each and everyone of you feel. I have a long way to catch someone like Howard on 12 surgeries in 9 months, but as someone who is still trying to carry on a career, I am now looking at major surgery number 4 in 15 months, which also included about 6 months of rehab!

My employers are starting to question the risk of having me hold down a position, which burns in my gut like you wouldn’t believe after all of the work, study and sacrifices I have made to ‘climb the ladder’ in the largest public hospital in our state to be the Nurse Educator for over 300 staff!

Of course there is the pain, lack of sleep, (see pain), irritability (see pain), frustration, (see pain), and all round sense of deja vu that each morning ‘here we go again’, (see pain)!!!! One final thing I want to share with you all, especially the men as we are not the most emotionally strong beings getting around, is the amazing emotional and psychological journey I have been on in the last couple of days!

When I saw those x-rays, I felt relieved and justified that I actually had physical proof that reflected the pain I was in! I had convinced myself that I had a pain problem, that I was ‘getting soft’, that I was imagining it and even that with all of the medical knowledge and evidence I had that I had become that annoying patient who always has something wrong with them and it is often vague and non-specific! I wanted to cry when I saw this, I was speechless, I wanted to hug my wife, I felt ashamed of the fact that I had let this pain and everything else of course get to me, but most of all I felt that my spirit was finally crushed.

I had finally let Johnson and Johnson DePuy, the ignorant surgeons who have knowingly done this to all of us, the lawyers and journalists ‘steal’ my unwavering belief that I would overcome this!

Insight is a rare and wonderful thing, I see it as a gift that a hell of a lot of life lessons have rewarded me with, but at the same time, I am fortunate that I knew I needed help and needed it right then. I was able to speak my mind in a safe place with people I trusted and get through it (thanks to my unbelievable wife, some friends and of course a few of you who didn’t even realise you were helping me by listening to the ravings of a lunatic!).

I want all of you to learn from this, you are not just fighting a physical battle here, but an amazing emotional and psychological battle as well!!

Please make sure you reach out if you know it is getting tough or the weight becomes too much! I implore you, especially the boys, make sure you have people or a person who you can turn to when these times inevitably come. We need each and every one of you to be strong for when the fight inevitably heats up and I can assure you that time is getting closer!

I have accessed some interesting information for all of the Smith and Nephew Birmingham patients out there that is being sent to my work, as soon as I get it I will put it up, I think you might find that it will give that company the same type of ‘exposure’ that Johnson and Johnson DePuy have enjoyed for the last couple of years!

Well, wish me luck, I am again putting my faith in a surgeon who I don’t know but at least he comes highly recommended and he hasn’t EVER put a MOM implant in any of his patients!

I hope for some answers, but as they all lead to the operating table, I am not getting too excited!!

Take care all of you, please listen to what I have said and if you are struggling, reach out, we are here!

Spare a thought for Howard, Earl and my mate Bob, who are all doing ti tough at the moment, as I often spend a moment to think of all of the very many of you out there who are on this terrible journey with us. We are with you too!!

As always, I can’t wait to see the Johnson and Johnson’s, Smith and Nephew’s and any of the other bastards have their day in court and actually have to face a few of us, but then again dreams are free!! 🙂

Talk soon, Stuart

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