Some of you may already know that Dave is going into theatre on Tuesday, 23rd Feb (8am) for a big operation. Doctors are confident that he is a good candidate for this type of repair treatment.
It’s a 7+ hour operation so does have its risks – as does most long operations. Main concern for Dave is the fact that he is on Warfarin (blood thinning tablets) and that he also suffers from Atrial Fibrillation (irregular heart rate) oh, and high blood pressure… so I am banking on these so called ‘best’ specialists to do a good job and get Dave through this major operation.
What they are going to do is remove the existing prosthesis and implant an antibiotic spacer. It’s commonly done in 2 stages when initial knee replacement hasn’t proved successful. One can Google it and read on how they go about this. Not for the feint hearted!
They are going to have to cut off some more bone both above and below knee area, because of a bug in Dave’s wound that has been identified as Klebsillia Pneumoniae. It is a threat and know to hibernate in damaged bone. He is being isolated now that they have a name for this bug, as it is bacterial and a risk to other patients. Took them a week to identify it and in that time, he already had 5 roommates!
He is enjoying the solitude and privacy for now. Once they remove some excess bone, they will implant an antibiotic cemented pin which will be bolted at the knee joint, (this will leave Dave with a ‘stiff leg’ for at least 3 months) then the plastic surgeon will take a ‘flap’ from Dave right thigh and cover the big hole and join the flap to his blood supply.
Dave will probably spend a night or two in ICU before going into an isolation room in the new wing of the hospital (Orthopedic Wing)… which he is very happy about! The plastic surgeon will check on him three times a day to make sure the flap is taking. I’m guessing that early detection of rejection is of the utmost importance….
His plastic surgeon told him that they will do a flap graft up to 3 times if it continues to not take…. Unfortunately after that… the only option left is amputation. So we are going to stay positive and know that the flap will take first time round! J
Dave will then spend at least 7 or more days recovering and if his plastic surgeon is happy with results, Dave can come home and rest up here. He will have to remain immobile for quite a period and use the wheelchair again – then onto crutches.
Second stage to this operation will be putting in a new specially designed prosthesis by lifting the flap and fitting it into place (guessing this will happen in June/July). Dr Kevin Hoskins is his orthopedic surgeon, who showed Dave some photos of what it will look like, and told him the reason it has to be specially designed, is that the standard prosthesis will be too short to fit the gap after more bone removal.
They take a photo of his right knee skeleton and use this in reverse to make his new prosthesis… all new technology.