Need 6th hip surgery with special implant in Canada – any help?

Posted by ladyelaine @ladyelaine, Mar 13 9:22am

In 2008, I had screws put in a cracked femur. Six months later they had to be removed because the femur broke and I had to have a THR. After the THR failed I had a revision which also failed. In 2016 after considerable research I found out that the surgeon had lied to me and indeed I had cobalt and chromium in my body. He said it was all titanium. I am severely allergic to nickel, chromium and cobalt. (The screws in 2008 contained nickel which is likely the reason this all started) The current material is all titanium and I have severe lucency and excruciating pain. The surgeon’s plan is another revision with a large cadavar bone inside my leg to help stabilize. It is not guaranteed. After that it’s no hip. (This is the readers digest version of my story) My research is to determine why the last surgery has failed. My Melissa test does not indicate a titanium allergy so why is my bone deteriorating? What can I do to stimulate bone growth going forward? Are there other components that can be used in case it is an issue with titanium? Any help would be more than appreciated. Thank you all from Alberta, Canada!

Hello @ladyelaine. You have certainly had a challenging journey with your hip surgeries. I am sorry to hear of your need for yet another revision surgery and for the adverse reaction to the material used.

Can I ask if you have stayed with the same surgeon throughout this journey or if you have consulted others for a second opinion?

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@ladyelaine I wanted to check in. Below I have linked the Joint Replacement group and recently active discussions on this topic. You may wish to scroll through the discussions and post to find connections and suggestions.
– Joint Replacements https://connect.mayoclinic.org/group/joint-replacements/

– Questions regarding total hip replacement https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/questions-regarding-total-hip-replacement/
– Has anyone had sharp thigh pain after hip replacement https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/has-anyone-had-sharp-thigh-pain-after-hip-replacement/
– Hip Replacement – Are ligaments repaired? https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/hip-replacement-are-ligaments-repaired/

Members and mentors @cobweb @jidetemi @amallasch @yukoner777 @contentandwell @lotsofpain @peggyp @hopalongnm3 @palmsprings59 @abhilashrathore @breick @nmcwill @mamm @edmcrae @mamie @wildebjef @oregonjan @sandy148 @debbraw @sueinmn have been part of of discussions related to THR.

Where are you at regarding research? have you found any new information that you've found helpful?

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@ladyelaine You have had quite a long and difficult with your hip, I'm sorry for all you have gone through.

Unfortunately, I have no personal experience with hip replacements or with metal allergies so I cannot be of any help. I hope you do find a solution though, it must be very discouraging to live with this pain daily.
JK

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At 80 years old, I am now 13 month post-right-THR and will be permanently using a cane but my case is NOT the usual result. During surgery my right greater trochanter suffered a tip-fracture which the surgeon said was possible it would grow back together. It is the area of bone where the gluetus medius muscle is partially attached and that muscle supports the left hip when that foot is raised off the floor. The fracture, instead of reattaching, expanded more. (Attached x-ray with separation seen at upper left, next to the prosthesis. The wire seen is for a different, not unusual, fracture of the femur.) . I was then pain-free but could not walk without support using my left hand (walker or cane). After many consultations I was told the only surgery which could repair that muscle was an ORIF (open reduction with internal fixation) and the object of that surgery if ONLY to relieve pain and NOT to improve function. The only possibility for improvement would be PT to hopefully strengthen the other muscles in the gluteus group enough to make up for the loss of support from the gluteus medius.
I had PT through Oct. 2020 when the therapist and I decided that I had made all the progress possible in getting off of a cane/walker. A final follow-up with the surgeon confirmed that there was nothing else to be done. I continue to do the major exercises for glutes in order not to lose strength, but expect no further progress in raising my left foot unsupported.
I am still totally pain-free (hip-wise) and now just have to deal with over-use pains in my left hand, wrist, shoulder and tricep. I am simply unable to raise my left foot without support. However, I have gotten quite a collection of canes, some to use in sand, one for uneven, bare ground, even one for use on ice or snow, and purchased a very maneuverable 4-wheel rollator-style walker, so can go just about wherever I want to go, within reason. Fatigue of left arm is the main limiting factor now. (It is possible to get around, without a cane, with a major limp , such as when cooking, but that is not good for the remaining un-fixed fracture so I try to avoid limping. )
NOTE: The surgeon and his colleagues all said they had not encountered exactly my situation post-surgery before, so NO-ONE should take this as a caution against THR!! The actual surgery, itself, did exactly as hoped and eliminated hip pain.

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