Bi-lateral AVN of hips upcoming Core Decompressions : LUSENET : About Joints : One Thread

I am 32 yrs old and was diagnosed with bi-lateral AVN in the hips. There is evidence of minor collapse on both femoral heads via MRI and X-ray. I am scheduled for core decompressions to be done in three weeks, both hips at the same time. I am scared to death and wish someone could give me some insight on the success rate for me, recovery time, (I know I will be in a wheelchair for the majority of two monthe)and the post partum pain and any long term positive or negative results. I would really like absolutely ANY insight or advice you guys might have. There is no reason we can point to for my having AVN, it started 36 weeks into my pregnancy. Transient osteoporsis has been ruled out via MRI. Please talk to me!!!

-- Karla Sweeney (, August 21, 2003


Karla ... I am quite a bit different in age and definitely not pregnant. I had bilateral core depression in both hips at same time 2-1/2 years ago. MRI showed one hip with rating of 1, and the other hip with 0 (meaning no evidence of AVN). But the doctor did both hips anyway ... he just wanted the money. I suffered after surgery ever since until I had to have one hip replacement. Next hip replacement surgery due in 3 months. The orthopaedic surgeons told me that core decompression is a waste of time ... success rate is 20%. However, you are much younger and you probably will regain bone growth. Don't mean to throw you a downer. Perhaps someone out there has had very successful core decompression. I hope you hear from them.

-- Jan Bear (, August 21, 2003.

I had it done but my hip was not collapsed. It has worked well for me for 5 made me normal again but lately I have had some minor could be just arthritus. Its success rate for not having a collapsed hip is aroun 70%-80%. I dont know much about ti if it has started to collapse. I suggest to do a google search. I was just on google looking for a answer to my problem and found this site and lots of info on collapsed hips and the surgery but I didnt read about the collapsed hips. Good Luck, Josh

-- Joshua Schoenfeld (, August 21, 2003.

I was diagnosed with Bilateral AVN in Sept 95 after suffering for more then 5 years. At the age of 33 this was a very disturbing situation. Never the less I opted for the THR and had the right hip done Dec. 5th the same year. Then had the left hip done Jan. 22nd. Just 8 weeks apart. I went back to work on crutches 2 weeks after surgery both times. I now lead a very normal life for an average over weight American male. My surgeon warned me to stay away from high impact activities in order increase the longevity of the replacements. He also said I would most likely would need another set of replacements in my lifetime. I most defiantly would NOT delay having the THR's. My only regret is not having it diagnosed sooner as I would not have had to live with the sever pain for five years. Good Luck,

-- Bob Heebner (, August 24, 2003.

I am having core decomperssion in a few weeks also and am very scared as you are. I would appreciate any follow up from anyone who has at it. I am 57 years old. Thank you

-- Judy Stevenson (, October 25, 2003.

Hello, I just had core decompression surgery last week. I am a 24 year old female, fomer dancer. Thus the impact of being diagnosed with Bi-lateral AVN on both hips was huge. I had been living with the pain for a year b/c of a doctor's "wait and see" policy. I had to change physicians and then was informed of this procedure. I had extensive pain on my right hip and barely none on my left. So I had the surgery for my right one only. All I can say is, I was told the pain would last for two days. However, last night was the first night I did not need pain medication. I am on crutches and have limited my daily activity severely. My possible cause was due to high levels of prescribed prednisolone (steroids) taken over a one year period. I am not pregnant and due to the lack of sufficient knowledge about the cause of this and the progression factor, I do not plan on getting pregnant anytime soon. Good luck and good wishes...

-- Malinda Logan (, December 03, 2003.

I am 31 years old and have been diagnosed with bilateral-hip, bilateral Knees and bilateral shoulder AVN. The cause in my case was due to over prescribed steroids foa a kidney problem I have had since I was a child. The left side was affected more in my case and I first had the core decompression of both hips in October 2003 and then bilateral core decompression of knees in Dec 2003. Even before the surgeries, I was told that my left shoulder had already started to collapse. I am due to get bilateral core decompression of my shoulders this month end. For thouse who have already had these core decompressions, what has the result been?

-- Suchin Mundkur (, April 14, 2004.

I had bliateral core decompression in 1995 at age 48. I followed Md's orders-no weight-bearing for 8 weeks post-op-and had 6 years of pain-free living. I missed my daily 3-mile jog, but what can you do. Next month I will have total hip replacement of one hip, since the clock has run out for me. My MD says that I got as much mileage as possible out of the '95 decompression. I think my satisfaction with the procedure was directly related to being conservative about my post-op activities. Since I'm only 4'8", I guess any dreams of being an NBA coach will have to wait until my reincarnation. HOwever, I look forward to increasing my activity level after I recover from this next surgery.

-- Judy Bookman (, July 23, 2004.

Can't talk about results b/c I am having core depression performed on my right hip this upcoming Monday. I have been quoted a success rate of around 85%. My AVN is caused by sickle cell disease. I chose this as an alternitive to total hip replacement b/c I am only 28 so I am praying for the best. Good luck!

-- Talonzo Brooks (, August 20, 2004.

I am 41 years old and had a core decompression to my left hip about 7 weeks ago. I was diagnosed with AVN in the left femur right about July 1st, 2004. I started having pain at the end of May 2004 and went through primary physician and first orthopaedic guy, all thinking that it was probably bursitis, strain, etc. and prescribing NSAIDs. Finally, at the end of June 2004 they did an MRI. I'll never forget the orthopaedic surgeon throwing the MRI up on the light and saying "did I say that it could be avascular thats what it is". Gotta love doctors. I had my surgery at the end of July (after being NWB on crutches for a month after diagnosis) and just finished my 6 weeks post-surgical NWB on crutches. My problem is now that I have gone a week on one crutch then cane, I still have pain...but I have no idea what the source is. The drill site in the leg is still sore and gets more painful with additional walking, my hamstring and gluts ache, my range of motion stinks, and I can't get a normal gait without pain. Now, of course, the magical question is whether the pain is from AVN not being fixed by the core decompression or whether its mostly due to continued healing, combined effects from lack of use of the leg/hip for 3 months, and maybe even some cartlidge sticking in all the wrong places. Its hard not to be pessimistic as hell. So far the surgeon limits activities to walking and no physical therapy. So, that's my experience and I will try to stay positive. Oh, by the way, my problem was probably from prednisone (high doses for 6 months in 2001-2002). Questions for anyone: anyone hear of chiropractic work that helps with any of the pain if AVN is still there after core decompression? Anyone know how long someone should suffer with pain before they demand a THR? Finally, why can't they repeat the core decompression procedure? Why is it one shot and that's it?

-- Rich Hameister (, September 14, 2004.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ