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Author Topic: Patella Hardware Removed, Yes or No?  (Read 1298 times)

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Offline boudica183

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Patella Hardware Removed, Yes or No?
« on: October 24, 2009, 06:02:25 AM »
I'm new to this message board. I'm a 25 year old female and I shattered my left patella in a car crash in 2001. It was reconstructed with pins, screws, and wires. I had a few weeks of PT and no major problems, just some aches with the weather changes and loss of activity and a A LOT of weight gain. I went on vacation last week and when I came back I have had horrible aching pain, so i went to the os and he said i should have the hardware removed. this is a new os, the previous one in 2001 did not say anything about having the metal removed? I am scared and unsure about what to do. What are the risks and benefits? He said i would be out of work for a month and that is quite a problem but I want to do what is best for my body. Please help.


Offline sabasc3

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Re: Patella Hardware Removed, Yes or No? -- if YES, how long to recover?
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2009, 03:56:18 PM »
Hi Boudica,
Sorry to hear your pain has gotten worse.
If I recall correctly, my OS said the majority of his patients get their wires and pins out after patella surgery.  I plan to ask him to remove mine when he says my patella is healed well enough. 

Hopefully you can check with your OS, but...
I believe the benefits of removal are that the soft tissues around the patella won't have to deal with the hardware in contact with them, and it eliminates the chance of a loose body (loosening pin/screw, shifted wire).   
I believe the biggest risk is post-surgical infection. 

I'm curious to hear from other KG folks if 4 weeks (a month) is typical to be out of work after removing patella hardware.  It seems a little long to me; doesn't the knee remain essentially fully functional but swollen and sore from the surgery?

Sep.09.09 - broke kneecap on sidewalk
Sep.18.09 - Surgery 2 pins 2 wires, small fix to retinaculum
Apr.02.10 - Surgery - pins and wires out
See Diary of Scott's right patella fracture recovery[/url