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Metal Allergy Metal Allergy post TKR

DianaJ

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I had metal allergy test thru Orthopedic Analysis and found out mildly allergic to 3 metals, cobalt, chromium & Iron and highly allergic to nickel, also, allergic to bone cement! I had a Conformis TKR a year ago Nov 2020, and knew something wasn't right, pain, stiffness & swelling. I was very active, 3 Ironman's in my 60's and I'm 65 now and have pain & stiffness when walking 2-3 miles??? NOT HAPPY!!! My Dr. wants to do another replacement using Aesculap TKR but reviews are terrible & he'd still be using bone cement, which I'm allergic to and causes failure in Aesculap Knee. I NEED to know if I don't replace this, how this will effect my health; ive read it effects immune system and can seep into Kidneys and Liver??? Not a lot of info...my allergist says NOT to redo it because of infection, leg shortening, long painful surgery & recovery, so we are going to monitor my blood every 3 months and eat foods/avoid jewelry etc. that do not contain nickel. Any info would be appreciated and good luck to everyone dealing with metal allergies! Thanks
 

sistersinhim

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DianaJ, welcome to Bonesmart. Did you had a TKR in November 2020 or 2019. Please let us know the exact date and which knee it was. We will add this information to your signature so we can quickly see what was done to your knee.

Usually, a mild allergy to certain metals shouldn't cause a problem. Having your blood tested frequently is a good idea. I'm also mildly allergic to nickel. It used to cause my pierced ears to get infected, but I've had no problem with my implant.
 
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DianaJ

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I had TKR on right knee on November 21, 2019, scoped on April 12, 2018
 

Pumpkln

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There are other mfg of non nickel TKR's. Here is a link to some information.

Stryker has nickel free implants also as do several other mfg's

I had a revision, while they can be challenging, it is not as difficult as your allergist seems to think.
 

Jamie

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@DianaJ ... I can certainly understand your concerns based on what you've been reading and hearing about the Aesculap implant. I really want to caution you about trying to do a lot of internet research on something like this as there is so much misinformation out there!

The Aesculap knee implant is a good one and it has been successfully used in many, many patients. There have been no recalls of their products. What you will see if you do internet research is a bunch of official looking informational websites that are produced by law firms in an effort to get clients who are having problems with their knees. You need to put your trust in medical professionals and not lawyers.

While I'm sure your allergist means well, I'm not sure where he or she is getting the information that having a TKR revision causes infection, shortening of the leg, and a very difficult recovery. There is, of course, the normal risk (very low) of infection as there is with any invasive procedure. A revision does not shorten your leg. And recovery is pretty much the same as with a primary TKR. We see a lot of revision patients here on BoneSmart for various reasons and the things you are fearful of just don't happen.

What is important if your current implant is loose is that you have it revised. Your knee will not get better and, in fact, will likely worsen. It is possible to do additional bone damage if you try to walk around on an implant that is moving around. That can make revision surgery more complex when you finally decide to have one done.

I suggest that you get at least two more opinions on your knee from experienced revision surgeons. Here are a couple of surgeons you might consider:

Dr. Michael S. Bradford, MD
Nevada Orthopedic and Spine Center
Las Vegas, NV
702-258-3773

Dr. Russell T. Nevins, MD
Desert Orthopedic Center
Las Vegas, NV
702-731-4088

I would be curious to know who your current surgeon is if you wouldn't mind sharing that information. Whoever you talk to, be sure to ask how many revisions they perform each year. You want experience. Ask about the different implant options and your concerns about the bone cement sensitivity.

You don't need to rush into having additional surgery. But it is important to get opinions by medical professionals who know how to help you.

If you want to read about other BoneSmarties who have dealt with metal allergies, here is a search of the forum using "Metal Allergy" that gives you a list of threads.
 
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