Mike here, with another update and another journey ahead.
I completed therapy and the pain with the revised hip continued, especially when I would bend over; straightening up is a tremendously painful effort and has been so since a few months after the first implant. The pain in my left hip and thigh has continued to get worse with the passing of time. It finally go so bad that I started therapy again, hoping that perhaps more was needed. It didn’t help at all; matter of fact, therapy seems to make it worse. I also noticed my left thigh and buttock was getting larger. I then made an appointment to see an orthopedic surgeon for a checkup.
The surgeon examined me and then sent me in for x-rays. When he came back into the room he had a very stern and worried look on his face. He was a very sweet guy. He looked at me and put the x-ray image up on the viewer. We studied the two views and he stated the obvious; that there was Osteolysis around the femoral stem. There seemed to be a space about half way down the stem where the bone was just gone. In previous surveys, the implant was completely surrounded by bone. He advised me that this was beyond his level of expertise and referred me to a bone specialist.
Between visits, I was given an MRI with one of the new 64 machines that gives much greater detail and produces the results quickly. I then spent four hours with the bone specialist. He laid out all the details before me, explaining the probable routes for correction and several alternative surgical methods.
Three hip replacements of the same hip in four years is getting to the point of both serious and ridiculous, but something has to be done. My hip and thigh have gotten so large that I have had to order new pants to accommodate them. Walking is quite painful and I am now walking with the assistance of Canadian or forearm crutches. They are quite helpful.
One thing that is quite troublesome and something that I don’t have an answer for yet is the fact that I have lost over 2 1/2 inches in height. The bone specialist measured me and my legs and found that my left leg is 5/8 inch longer than the right. I don’t know what is causing the Osteolysis, but they believe that it is plastic shavings coming off the hip that was used in the revision surgery. We should know something in a couple of weeks, as I am to return to the bone specialist. He will likely perform a bone biopsy and pull some fluid from one of the sacs for lab testing.
One day I won’t be writing any more updates, because all the work will be finished and maybe; just maybe, I will begin to get some normal back into my life.
My best to each and every one of you.