Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Cat scan and MRI

I'm going in for my CAT scan and MRI next week. This will give Dr. Buly (God in the form of a surgeon) a better idea if the cartilage is in good enough condition to do either the PAO (peri-acetabular osteotomy) or FO (femoral osteotomy). They build 3D models and do computer imaging from the CAT scan and MRI - it gives a much clearer picture than just the 2D X-rays. Cartilage is rated on a 0-3 scale of viability, 0 being in good shape and 3 being scrap this whole idea and just get a hip replacement. To be able to have the PAO my cartilage needs to rate either a 0 or a 1.

Wondering what these two big fancy sounding surgeries are?

PAO is a 5 hour surgery that involves cutting off a piece of the pelvic bone, realigning it so that it covers the top of the femur, and then reattaching the bone to the rest of the pelvis with metal pins. Dr. Buly says 6 weeks on crutches but my predecessor Dysplastic (her blog is dysplastic.blogspot.com) was on crutches for a lot longer, more than 3 months I think.

FO is about 2 1/2 hours, much less involved, where the top of the femur is cut and realigned to fit into the acetabulum with a metal rod to help it regrow correctly. Also 6 weeks on crutches and a piece of metal in my leg that would be noticable to the touch that is then removed after a year. Totally bionic woman and a good party ice breaker.

Since my dysplasia (and everyone's is different) involves both a shallow socket and a femoral head that is rotated backwards these are both possibilites, but only if said cartilage is not entirely shot. Dr. Buly seemed to think from what he could see that there was a good chance that the cartilage is ok. Just waiting for Tuesday now.

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