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Difficulty with THR

Date: 08 Feb 2000
Time: 17:34:34
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Due to OA I had right hip replacement on June 28, 1999. Everything seemed to be ok and I went to the rehab facility on July 2rd. On July 4th I was rushed to emergency with extreme bleeding from the wound and my blood pressure had dropped to 59/12. Two days in ICU, 2 days in a regular hospital room and 4 units of blood later, I went home. No one knew what happened. I was told that sometimes "things happen!". Two weeks later on a Sunday, I went to Urgent Care with bleeding and oozing from the wound. I was given IV antibiotics and a prescription because they said I had an infection. The following Friday I went to the Orthopaedic Surgeon on call for my doctor (my doctor went on vacation), and he admitted me to the hospital because of severe infection. After 3 days in the hospital and constant IV antibiotics, with no results, (exactly 1 month after the original THR),the surgeon decided he had to reopen the wound and clean it out. When he went in he said there were alot of blood clots and alot of infection. He cleaned it out and left the 18" wound open to heal from the inside - out. This third stay in the hospital was for 11 days and I was anxious to get home. Once I got home I had a home care nurse twice a day to administer IV antiobiotics and clean and pack the open wound. I was referred to the Wound Care Center for once a week treatment and care. That was one of the best things since my surgerys. My original surgeon didn't seem to care that I was having so many problems. He never changed the dressing when I went to his office for a check-up and he never debrided the wound. The doctor that I was seeing at the Wound Care Center just happened to be the same surgeon that took excellent care of me when I was re-admitted for the second surgery. He also performed the third surgery which closed the wound after 4 months of being open. I'm supposed to have the left hip surgery, but now, because of all the complications, the surgeons don't want to touch me unless I loose weight. Now I have severe pain in the left hip and both knees. I haven't been able to return to work because I barely walk. I use a cane and walker around the house and I use a wheel chair for distances. I haven't had an income since September and I've had to apply for Social Security Disability. As of this date I haven't been approved or denied. I'm still waiting. I was told by the original Orthopaedic Surgeon that my weight could cause some problems, but his explanation of my chances was from a 10% chance of problems to 20%. He never told me that the problems could be so severe or I never would have had the surgery until I lost a lot of weight. Now I am having trouble losing weight because my mobility is extremely limited. He didn't show any concern when he found out about the difficulties and additional surgerys. Needless-to-say, this whole experience was one that I could have lived without. My right hip is doing fine, now, but I still have difficulties with the wound. I still can't sleep in a bed and I still can't live a normal life. The depression is getting worse day by day. Please keep me in your prayers.

Last changed: February 08, 2000