My latest gadget—a new hip
The balls of my hip joint (femoral heads) were damaged when I was treated with prednisone (a steroid drug) to reduce the inflammation in my lungs during a severe episode of pneumonia over three years ago. This is a known side effect of steroids in less than 1% of the population. Interestingly, however, I have found that this side effect is well known among only orthopedic doctors, but every non-orthopedic doctor I have talked to has no idea of this phenomenon. The steroid combines with fat globules in the blood and deposits itself in the tiny capillaries of the bone and deprives the bone of oxygen. During the last few months the symptoms on the left hip became so severe that I not only had trouble biking and swimming, but I also could not walk or even sit without pain. I started using a cane but knew that surgical intervention was necessary. After much research and seeing 7 doctors in 4 cities (Houston, Atlanta, New York and Baltimore), Janice and I decided that a hip resurfacing is the way to go rather than a total hip replacement. Above is an artist's rendition video of hip resurfacing.
Here is a link that has an x-ray image showing the difference between a hip resurfacing and a total hip replacement. The Surface Hippy website was tremendously helpful in our research. The actual prosthesis is a cobalt chromium alloy made by Cormet in the UK and marketed by Stryker in the US. My surgeon was Dr. Michael Mont at the Sinai hospital in Baltimore. I will need to get the right hip resurfaced sometime in the near future.