Saturday, December 25, 2010

Dr Michael Bolognesi gives expert advice on WebMD

Dr. Michael Bolognesi regularly gives expert advice to orthopedic patients on WebMD.  

This web-site discourages anyone from disagreeing with their "experts."  As such, I expect that WebMD will remove my posts.  And so I will report them here.  My goal is to protect patients and, in this situation, the topic is post-surgical bone infection.

bziegler posted:
After suffering from knee Pain for years, and Liproscopic Surgery done on both knees, I was told by my First OS that I would do good with a partial knee replacement. I went in for the first one, recieved [sic] a nice dose of Staph in the OR, and was sent Home with it ! I had 2 trips back to the Hospital to stay for Days, and the Surgeon never opened the knee to iragate it, I was treated only with massive amounts of Antibiotics, put in PT. I finished Pt, but was in so much pain, I went back to him and ask him why, upon which he told me he didn't know why and 'Your not getting any Pain Medicine" ! Sent my records back to my PC Doctor and I was on my own. After 6 months of total misery and still on crutches, I was sent to another Ortho Surgeon, took all my records ,Mri's, Scopes and was ask "Why did I let him do this"? I didn't have osteoarthritis to even think about having that done. But just upon him moving my Knee I was told it was loose and I would need a total, and he was glad I didn't let him do the Left knee, which he was going to 6 wks later. I had the Total, and was told by him not cleaning the the area after staph it was all inflamed and grossly loose. It has been 1 year and I'm back in PT for the 3rd time, still on crutches, and still more Pain than I ever had before the first replacement was done. 
Tendonitis,numbness,severe shin splints,swelling and heat still in the Knee. My balance is off, I have fallen on serval occasion, just walking or getting up. I'm 52 years old and my Life as I once knew it is over. I will never run again, taking stairs are a challenge, I'm not even able to walk very far with out stopping. Needless to say the depression has set in deep. Has anyone gone through the Staph or having to have knee replacement done twice in a six month period? I just want to see some light at the end of the tunnel, and get back to camping, I know Packbacking will be out because of the weight of the pack, but walking my dog would be nice. If you have any suggestions that would help me, I would be very grateful !! And I will never do my other knee, I will do Synvisic injection which helped so much ! My advice to anyone thinking about doing this...DON'T.....
Michael P Bolognesi, MD   responded:
I am sorry to hear what you have gone through. The occurrence of peri-prosthetic infection is rare but it does occur. The key to the managment [sic] of the infection is early recognition and surgical intervention when indicated. The surgical history you describe is extensive and a lot for anyone to go through over six months but that can often be the course in the face of infection. If you are still having a lot of pain you need to be worked up for persistent infection versus implant failure or loosening. You should discuss your concerns with your surgeon given that you are over a year out from your last procedure and still not doing well. If you do not feel that you are getting answers then you certainly could consider a second opinion. I wish you the best. 

CherylHandy replied to  Michael P Bolognesi, MD's  response:
The problem with requesting is a second opinion bziegler is that your orthopedic surgeon may do what mine did - he (or his resident or fellow) sent a letter that I did not authorize through a medical release to the second opinion surgeons. 
That "letter" sabotaged my ability to get medical care. Now I have the bone infection, dead tibia and I am bed ridden with pain. Just be careful not to tell the first orthopedic surgeon what you are doing in terms of getting the second opinion or, like me, this might be your last Christmas.
Good luck and God bless you.

CherylHandy responded:

Please be careful. Read my blog at I want you to be informed, ask questions and get good help. God bless you.

What has happened to the medical profession?  

Dr. Bolognesi routinely performs joint replacements (especially DePuy ASR Hip Replacements).  IMHO, an orthopedic surgeon should not perform a joint replacements unless he can prevent, diagnose and treat bone infections.

Dr. Bolognesi was no where to be found on the day I discharged from Duke Hospital after he performed the surgery for my bone infection.  The surgical wound reopened.  Dr. Bolognesi apparently took the position that if he did not see the opened wound, it did not exist.

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