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gncellist (@gncellist)

Hip Spacer is a Nightmare

Bones, Joints & Muscles | Last Active: Aug 31, 2019 | Replies (10)

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@gncellist

Thank you. My doctors are saying nothing right now – we’re just in a holding pattern until the needle aspiration 2 weeks after the IV antibiotic course is done. And my surgeon says he doesn’t know when the custom joint will be ready; only that it’s being made. MeanwhileI’ve lost my whole summer – no swimming, no cycling, not even walks. AndI’m a cellist who can’t play the cello with the spacer (& is missing out on my summer concert series, of which I missed 2 of 4 concerts due to last year’s emergency surgery for the staph infection. This whole thing has shaken me to the core – surgery has never faxed me, but this terrifies me -all the more because I keep seeing stories of patients who had to have the spacer repeated 2 or more times or took years to have their infection eradicated.

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Replies to "Thank you. My doctors are saying nothing right now - we’re just in a holding pattern..."

Hi gncellist my name is Lin I'm from the UK. I had my first R. THR in Feb 2017 for osteoarthritis. My L. was replaced in Sept of the same year. No problems.
A few weeks before it was replaced I noticed a lump over the site of the R. replacement but everyone dismissed it.
At my 6 week appt for the L. I got it checked by my consultant , who didn't dismiss it! It turned out to be an abscess containing staph Caprae. I underwent excision and debridement of wound followed by 6 weeks oral antibiotics. 2 weeks later I had flu like symptoms the infection was back as it was on the bio plates of the prosthesis. Things dont happen quick here in the UK! I went to surgery in June and had my hip removed and my spacer fitted and a picc line for 7 weeks of IV antibiotics. The spacer is an instrument of torture, nobody warned me how bad it was going to be but you do get used to it. The clunking ,clicking and noise is normal as is the pain and discomfort. In hospital I used to get them to lift and rotate my leg to get it to clunk into a more comfortable position. it worked for me! I was allowed to 50% weight bear.
I too lost most of last year so I can feel your pain, but it's necessary if you want to get well, dont dwell on it, use that energy and turn it into positive energy to get better. My hip was replaced end of October 2019, 4 1/2 months later.
Unfortunately I had to have a plate and wires to secure a non healing fracture from the removal, which has caused me some bother and I returned to theatre 4 weeks ago to have it removed. I'm pleased to say already I'm walking better than I have walked in years. Hang in on there! (these are the words of my Consultant, I dont know how many times he has said this!!!! but he's right. I feel I'm almost, if not there now). I had swabs at my last OP which I know are clear. Unfortunatly my post OP appt with him was postponed and am now due for that next week. I feel I'm lucky, I had no problems with any drugs. It has been the hardest 2 1/2 years of my life but I survived it. Good luck and stay strong. Lin