Author Topic: Possible Loosening  (Read 10198 times)

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Possible Loosening
« on: August 23, 2007, 12:23:32 PM »
I had my left hip resurfaced in March of this year and up until approx a month ago it was going very well.  I have over the last month had what I can only describe as a clunking in the groin area, which happens especially when I reach down and shift weight when sitting.  I am also getting a return of discomfort in the groin area.  Yesterday I had an Xray taken, which does not show any obvious evidence of loosening however the xray will have to be forwarded to the specialist off island for further opinion,which may take some time.  I would be interested to hear if anybody has experienced the same. 

« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 04:51:58 PM by Pat Walter »

Pat Walter

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Re: Possible Loosening
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2007, 02:27:43 PM »
Hi   I had my left hip resurfaced in March of 2006.  I had clunking from the very begining. Dr. De Smet explained to me that the muscles were loose and allowing the clunking.  It is a strange feeling, but I never had any pain with the clunk.

I still clunk some 17 months later. Sometimes when I am leaning to the left and sometimes when I shift my leg and am sitting.  But again, I don't have any pain.  I am also 63 years old now and my muscles are not as strong as they use to be when I was younger.

I am not medically trained, but from doing a lot of reading of other people's experiences, I would guess it is a muscle problem.  Have you have any PT or do you do any stretches and exercises?  I had real stiffness at the 4 - 6 months period.  My first few steps after sitting were painful, but went away after a few steps.  It was a muscle issue.  I started water walking and pt in the water doing stretches and exercises. That really helped and I have never had problems since with the stifness.  I still have some clunking, but no pain.

If you x-rays show your hip is OK, then I imagine that your doctors will suggest some pt to help your muscles.

I hope you will get some input from your doctor about the problem.  You are still only 5 months post op and it takes a full year or sometimes more for the hip to heal. You can be active, but your muscles are still healing.

3/15/06 LBHR De Smet
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3/15/06 LBHR De Smet


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Re: Possible Loosening
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2007, 06:58:07 PM »
Thanks for that - I did have PT and although I have had clunking it wasn't uncomfortable before. I had been on the water treadmill and was vigilant with my exercises, I was using non-weight bearing exerise equipment with no problem whilst gaining strength back in my thigh/hip muscles. The clunking is now associated with some aching ,more in the groin area now - I haven't done my exercises for the last couple of weeks, but due to the approach of Hurricane Dean I probably lifted more than I should. The xray I have had taken today isn't conclusive hence it is being sent to the surgeon who performed the surgery to advise, knowing the need for expertise a surgeon listed on your recommended list performed the surgery. I do hope it is a case of a muscle issue rather than the prosthesis.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2007, 09:42:32 AM by kes »


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Re: Possible Loosening
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2012, 05:14:04 PM »
I am 8 yrs post op. I have had clunking from time to time which is not painful. Now in past 6 weeks I have had 4 episodes of severe leg thigh muscle pain making it difficult to walk. Are there characteristic signs of loosening and if so, what are they?


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Re: Possible Loosening
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2012, 05:50:46 PM »
Not being a medical person, I can't give you all, but here is a site that lists some scenarios from people who had different failures. They are anecdotal and may not represent everyone, but at least give you some idea of what they felt:


From that site, the people who talked about loosening said:

Loosening of the Femoral Component after Hip Resurfacing 

Scenario #1  
The main symptom was pain I’d experience when I'd get up from lying down or sitting.  It lasted for weeks and continued to get worse as time went on.  It became obvious that something was wrong, and it caused me to schedule an appointment with my surgeon.  The X-ray revealed that the femoral component had dropped or repositioned due to a loosening of the component.   

Revision surgery was performed, and a large head total hip replacement femoral stem was implanted.  I had my resurfaced hip for approximately 16 months before symptoms developed, and my revision surgery was performed 17 months after my original resurfacing surgery.   

Scenario #2 
Approximately two years after my resurfacing, a shadow appeared near the edge of the guide pin of the femoral component (i.e. radiolucency).  This did not necessarily mean an implant failure was inevitable, but it was something that needed to be watched.  I had had perfect function of the hip and no pain except for a little soreness when I had been on my feet all day.  I had already been diagnosed as having a soft bone condition at the time of surgery with small sponge-like crevices on the top of the femur. 

Later, I began getting referred pain in my knee, and I’d occasionally experience a sharp pain in the hip if I was leaning forward and putting a lot of weight on that leg.  Afterward, I began getting weight-bearing pain in the leg.  It was in the front of the thigh and running down to the knee, and it was different than the groin pain I had experienced before surgery.   

More X-rays did not show any differences in the hip structure, and it was determined that the femoral component had loosened—not catastrophically, but it had loosened nonetheless.  I began using walking aids while preparations were made for revision surgery to a large head total hip replacement stem.  The revision surgery was then performed without any complications.  The acetabular cup remained solid and was not replaced.

It's easy to see yourself in these situations, I took a psychology class at school and thought I had every psychological issue we were studying. This kind of thing is scary, so I usually try to rule out the worst first so that my mind can either be at ease, or deal with the situation.  Have you gotten a hold of your surgeon or another surgeon to look at it and see if loosening has happened? Hopefully it hasn't and maybe this is just a muscular problem that can be treated.

Good luck, and welcome to the site. Keep us up to date...
Hernan, LHR 8/24/2010, RHR 11/29/2010 - Cormet, Dr. Snyder



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