Tag Archives: Operation

Operation Date

Another quiet and pretty normal day.

Liz made oat waffles for us this morning as we are trying to get back into a term-time routine for a few weeks, at least until her operation, which we have now had confirmed dates for, so at least that is positive; 18 May for pre-op checks and 24 May for the actual operation.  Colleen has said she will come down to help, but there is still a lot of unknowns around this whole thing, although it appear she is unlikely to be in hospital (St George’s, London) for more than a day – she was actually informed that if she is first in the ‘morning batch’ she may well be allowed home the same day, which is absolutely incredible.

Operation Date

So many people have offered to help already, and I have no doubt they will continue to offer, so I’ll be baking lots more goodies in thanks for all the assistance to come. Some of the most recent batch of ‘treats’ went out today, and they have been ‘well’ received 🙂

The Boys have Judo on a Tuesday, so it is always busy for Liz, but she had asked Cecilia to take the children to school in the morning, so she rested for a bit after midday.

I on the other hand only had interviews, pre-project and team meetings to contend with, and even managed to fit in some cross training (cycling) and physio exercises at lunchtime.

Nevertheless, my life is still physically easier than looking after 4 children, irrespecive of how many calories I rack up during a day!

Subtrochanteric what?


Having been waiting in limbo for some weeks now with nothing appearing to happen with my break, I was referred by my Orthopaedic consultant at the Royal Surrey, Mr Paremain, to a sports injury specialist at St. Peter’s hospital in Chertsey, Mr Elliot. This was initially to confirm a ‘non-union’ of the break at the top of my femur, where the movement of the bone fragments in relation to each other stops the bone uniting and knitting back together.

Jan 2011 - No change.

However, he subsequently explained further, that the main reason for this was the angle of the fracture across the neck of my left femur. As this angle was too great (vertical) any weight from the body, or even muscles contracting, would displace the head of the femur in relation to the shaft, in effect the shear forces across the break are too great and although the cannulated screws are holding things in place, the head of the femur is toggling about them. Hence the pain.

As the issue is the angle of the fracture and the subsequent shear forces generated at the damage site, the next step, he explained further, was to reduce this angle to under 45° so that the forces are acting in compression, in effect the weight of the body pushes the join together.

The procedure to reduce the angle of the break, referred to as a ‘Subtrochanteric valgus osteotomy‘ involves cutting a wedge out of the femur and grafting the bone back in place with a flat blade and pins to hold the whole bone back in place so that nature can take it’s course.

This is not a common operation, but it is relatively recognised as the next step where a non-union is evident, where the head of the femur is still viable (i.e. in otherwise good condition) and where the patient is still young enough to discount only having one hip replacement considering the 15 year longevity of a hip prosthetic.

Subtrochanteric Valgus Osteotomy

Not common at all, in fact. Mr Elliot, who teaches this particular operation, and who by implication has probably done more of these than many people, confessed to only having performed 3 in the last 15 years.

So with a booking for a CT-Scan pending for the hospital to ‘model’ my femur, and the suggestion that we get second opinions and research the operation (he ‘Googled’ it himself and came up with very little!), we left another hospital with mixed emotions.

On the positive side, there is now a potential end to the indeterminate waiting game I have been playing over the last few months, but more critically this is another opportunity to fix my leg without a full replacement, which I had been expecting, and also because of the re-modelling of the bone I’ll be about 1 cm taller on my left side 🙂

On the downside, it is obviously fairly intrusive, it is a rare operation, with all the risks and issues associated with unfamiliarity and the surgeon is more concerned with getting me walking again than running ultramarathons.

So for the moment at least, it looks as if the focus of this website might be somewhat more medical than activity based.

Oh, it should also be much easier for me to do the splits afterwards.  At least on one side.

I wonder if I could get them to do both sides at the same time….