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Thu, Feb 28 3:45am · How long are your able to keep a hip spacer in (so far 32 years) in Joint Replacements

Hi! I’ve had my spacer in for 9 months now. I had surgery last May and my surgeon and I discussed keeping it in as long as possible. My goal was one full year as I didn’t show signs of infection the first time for about 7 to 8 months. I really wanted to make sure the infection was gone. Luckily labs are good and the leg is looking really good so I’m very pleased about that. They never gave me a definite time frame but they said that some people did really well with their spacers and chose not to have the revision surgery. Kept there spacer in for many years. Unfortunately, I’m having quite a bit of pain with it and I’m still on one crutch. I’m about 40 pounds over weight though so I know that has something to do with it. I’m slowly loosing the pounds and it feels better but I’m still very weak in the leg. Without being able to do physical therapy or strength training I don’t see me getting off of it and this one crutch is getting pretty tiresome. I go back in May for my annual exam and I’ve said surgery for July 30 at the Mayo Clinic but that’s only if the surgeon agrees. I’m not the best surgical candidate as I’ve had way too many already and I’m only 44. Lots of surgeries as a baby/young child and my first hip replacement was at 16.

How are you doing with your spacer? Most people I hear from hate them and want them out as fast as possible. I was thankful I apeare to be doing reasonably well but keeping it in for many years just doesn’t seem fun for me. Haha 🙂

Sep 25, 2018 · What kind of mobility can I expect with an antibiotic spacer in my hip in Joint Replacements

Oh my! I'm so glad to hear that. What a scare it was I'm sure. I pay your new hip continues to do well for you and no infection or any other complications.

I think I'm doing reasonably well with the spacer. I was toe touch weight bearing with my walker/crutches for about 5 weeks. The surgeon saw me before I left to head back home and I was released to drive home, weight bearing as tolerated, side leg lifts (a thousand a day he said jokingly), swimming, and very light stationary bicycle. It took me another couple weeks to put more weight on it. He wanted me to wean to just one crutch by the end of July and I made it. I do my side leg lifts, stretch regularly (whole body but carefully with the leg) and I've done some swimming, I feel the best in the water. It's sore in the front thigh area but I'll take sore any day over how crappy I was feeling with the infection. Every now and then I get some sharp pains when I do certain movements but not often and I can't identify what I'm doing so I just deal with it. I'm guessing it's the spacer, doesn't last long and it's tolerable. I think I was almost to make it to a cane the end of August but I tripped over a floor mat leaving a restaurant and had quite the setback. I did the try to keep yourself from falling thing and it was definitely not ready to take that weight or pressure in the front. I think I strained my thigh mussels and just tweaked my knee and whole leg in general. Back on two crutches I went. My massage lady has helped tremendously and is experienced in medical massage and orthopedics. Most importantly does not cost a fortune as most medical massage therapists do. I saw my Ortho here a little earlier than planned to make sure I did't hurt the spacer but it looks good and I'm about to send off my CD to the surgeon at Mayo and ask a few questions. I'm just now starting back to where I was before the trip thankfully.

Without some PT and more strength training I don't see me getting off my one crutch until I get my new hip. Which is fine, this leg has been through a lot of surgeries so I'm happy to wait it out to make sure and give myself the best chance for success with the final hip. I've got 40 pounds to loose so that will give me some time to get more healthy now that I feel good again.

Sep 23, 2018 · What kind of mobility can I expect with an antibiotic spacer in my hip in Joint Replacements

Sorry for the grammar errors. That’s me talking into my phone 🙂

Sep 23, 2018 · What kind of mobility can I expect with an antibiotic spacer in my hip in Joint Replacements

Hi! I’m new to this Mayo Clinic connect. I was searching for living with an antibiotic spacer and mobility expectations when I came across your original post back in November 2017. I’ve been looking at this thread and I see you’re quite far in your journey. I’m so sorry the infection appears to be back. I just had surgery in May at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester Minnesota. I’m from Texas. I lived with my staff infection for about 4 1/2 years on suppressive therapy (Bactrim 1 pill a day) when I saw a sought a second opinion from the infectious disease and orthopedic surgeon at the Mayo. I traveled with my mom and we took our two small dogs with us. We knew we would be there for at least the six weeks of IV antibiotic treatment after I got my spacer put in. I rented a small house through Home Away that worked out well. I did some research through the male clinic and they had housing recommendations but those I found didn’t take dogs or I would have used one of them. Of course I had time to do a lot of planning because it took me a long while to really commit and make the decision once they gave me their opinion. It differed from my doctors here in Texas and I was confused. I have a very good surgeon here in Texas as well as my infectious disease doctor but I was 42 at the time and they were worried about me losing my hip entirely because I’ve had so many surgeries on it in the past and I don’t have a whole lot of bone left. I’m happy to say that the infectious disease doctors and the surgeon at the Mayo are amazing. My level of care there was outstanding and I am hopeful this infection is gone. I am trying to make it a full year with my spacer to make sure before I try to do it all over again. I definitely feel that finding the right surgeon is the best. I’m not sure what type of infection you have or your timeframe on things but if I can help answer any questions on traveling for surgery I’m happy to help anyway I can. I was looking at the various Mayo Clinic locations and I went to Rochester because I had read an article of what they were working on for a non-surgical cure implant related infections and that was being done in Rochester. I had hoped that they were closer and perhaps I could wait a bit longer but it appears there a long way off. From what I am told of others who have been at the Mayo Clinic Rochester was an excellent choice for orthopedics and infectious disease.