I am at a crossroad where I am faced with making a decision as to weather or not I should go with a joint replacement that may only last 5 yrs or a joint fusion which is forever. Either way I am going to be pain-free (so I'm told). Before I make my decision, I would like to talk to people who have had this done.
Any one had either of these procedures done?
Laura, I had a joint replacement 3 years ago, and haven't had any trouble with the artificial joint, however I should clarify that doctors are still not sure what type of arthritis I have, and what ever it is causes my joint to "lock up" so they do not move at all. After the joint replacement I still have no movement in the joint, after surgery I went through 2 months of physical surgery, we were able to get the finger straight, and were able to get some movement, but after physical surgery, I lost all movement, and my finger locked up in a resting position once again. Needless to say without the use of the joint the artificial joint is expected to be be indestructable, it is made from a material call "pyrocarbon" which is similar to carbon fiber. This type of material is expected to be far more durable than that of steel, or silicon, however at the time of my surgery was still experimental but still something to talk to your doctor about.
laura can you please contact me. i need someone to talk to about joint replacement and fusion. i'm only 20 years old and its been difficult for me
I had a shoulder replacement surgery apprx. 7 years ago and it was the best thing I ever did. At the time of surgery, I was in such pain that I was taking up to 3000mg of pain pills a day or more. I was a walking zombie. The minute I woke up from surgery was as if I was reborn. The pain was GONE for the first time in YEARS. I have had small limited movement, but not anything I cannot live with. However, about 2 1/2 years ago, I had a middle finger joint replacement, again due to arthritis. It was the biggest mistake I ever made. I now have a finger that is still in just as much pain, now twice the size it was, and it is crooked. I cannot bend it more than 25 degrees, and it has cause a HUGE change in my life. THe only thing I can say, is to research, research, research. Not only your coniditon, and the surgery that you face, but your doctor as well. See if you can talk to any physical therapist that has worked on people who have gone through the same surgery as you face. <his patients is at all possible> Think hard and ask yourself if the benefits of a surgery will outweight the quality of life you now have. The first choice and dr I went through, I would not hesitate to do again...but the second...I'm considering a suit. Good luck