(let me apologize in advance if this msg is jumbled, confusing, and my grammar is poor... some of my family members think the TV should be loud enough so the people in the house beside us can hear it)
Hi everyone. I'm new to the website but thought it may be a great place to ask my question. Okay, so here's the situation. 8 years ago while crossing the street I was struck by a car driven by a drunk driver. As a result, I had a fractured wrist (which never healed back correctly since we found out about it over a month later... we'll get to that later), a brain injury, and an open fracture to my femur. I now have a titanium rod along my femur. However, because of a leg length discrepancy prior to the injury, when the surgeons measured my right femur to determine how long the rod should be, the rod in my left leg is at least 1/2 an inch too long. Now, I have significant pain in my hip. I've tried getting my shoes built up to improve my balance and my gait and to (try to) take extra strain off of my left leg, but it only goes so far. It still hurts. Now I'm compensating so much with my right leg that I'm starting to have pain in that hip.
I last spoke with an orthopedist a couple of years ago (he's retired now and may have even passed away from colon cancer) and he said he did not want to remove the rod because "too much stress on the bone" and "too much recovery time." All he would do was prescribe celebrex, maybe a pain reliever such as lortab or vicodin, and gave me cortisone shots.
I'm thinking now, especially since Dr McCone is no longer practicing - and possibly not even living - that I need to get a second opinion. I'm wondering if theres even any point in checking about having the rod removed. Do any of you know anything about this? At 26 do you think I'd be at a good age to make it through the surgery and recovery okay? I appreciate any info you all can share.
let me add,
I work in a nursing home as an Occupational Therapy Assistant. It is a very physical job and at the end of the day I am often hurting. Which is worse - the stress on my hip/femur now or the stress and recovery I'd have to have if the rod was removed?
I also had bilateral femur fractures and rods inserted in eaxh leg. One leg healed very well but the other not only did not heal but the titanium rod broke in two.
The only option was to have the broken rod removed and a new rod inserted. I am no spring chicken like you but I would like to tell you the surgery went great and I am back to my old self. Riding bikes and swimming 2 miles a day.
Find a surgeon you can trust and discuss your concerns openly with him.
Then decide what is best for you.
Good luck and God bless you
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