AVN of the talus

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I was recently diagnosed with Avascular Necrosis of the talus. I had severe pain primarily when going up and down stairs and walking on uneven surfaces, but minimal discomfort with normal, walking even for sefveral miles. As an alternative to arthroscopic surgery, I have been using an EBI bone stimulator and am avoiding all high impact activities such as running. My symptoms seem to be improving, but I still have days of discomfort (with dorsi-flexion). I am wondering what the literature or studies have shown with the bone stimulator and how long recovery usually takes. Are there other alternatives to surgery since I was told I would have to be non-weight bearing for six weeks. I would appreciate any information you could provide.

-- Nancy Green (NanGreen@attbi.com), December 25, 2002


There are no literature studies of using a bone stimulator for treatment of AVN of the talus. The bone stimulator has been used to treat other bone disorders including non-unions. It has been tried for avascular necrosis of the hip with limited success. If the bone stimulator is giving you some relief of your discomfort, I would stick with it and I would keep using it as long as you continue to improve. There are alternatives primarily one being core decompression and yes you would be non-weight bearing for six weeks. This is to prevent collapse of the bone after drilling a hole in it with the core decompression.

-- Marc W. Hungerford, M.D. (mhunger@jhmi.edu), March 27, 2003.

I am in a delima like yourself. I am a cancer paitent and have already had my left hip replaced due to AVN. Now my left knee is half rotten due to AVN but a knee replacement is not even concidered since my immune system is deterioated due to chemo treatments. The Dr's are waiting for the knee to breake with a posibility of the leg being removed, (I don't want this). I was hopeing that a bone stimulator may help with my problem, but nothing seems to promising. In the mean time I wear a brace and am to be non-weight bearing. Any guidiance from anyone is appricated. Tony

-- Anthony Ray Dewitt (hugemcrew@hotmail.com), September 22, 2004.

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