Living With Osteonecrosis
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

Living With Osteonecrosis

What life is like with a dead bone

396
Living With Osteonecrosis

Osteonecrosis is a rare, incurable disease that stems from a lack of blood supply. Without a healthy flow of blood to an area, the body is unable to replace old tissue with new tissue. This leads to the decay and death of those bones. It is typically found in the hips of those ages 30 to 60, with the two most common causes being steroid usage and alcohol consumption. However, injuries can also cause this condition. In my case, a misdiagnosed injury led to osteonecrosis in my foot.

The hardest part about living with osteonecrosis is knowing the intense pain is incurable. The condition is a bit ironic. Since the bone is dead, it shouldn't hurt, right? Wrong. It is an incredibly painful disease. It aches. It burns. It throbs.

Unfortunately there are not many options for treatment. For me, even just walking on it is painful. This has caused a slew of other issues because of the development of an abnormal gait to try to lessen the pain. Over-the-counter pain killers tend to be ineffective for me. Some people treat this disease with steroid injections. The problem with this is that steroid usage is one of the leading causes. As a result, while steroid injections may make the pain more manageable in the short term, it may actually worsen the condition in the long run.

In some cases osteonecrosis is treated through surgery. This most often means hip replacement. However, with the disease affecting my foot, hip replacement wouldn't help. Instead, I had half of the bone in my foot removed. Part of me wishes they took the whole thing out, as the portion left is still incredibly painful. That isn't recommended though because apparently bones are somewhat necessary (who knew?).

Other treatments involve physical therapy and ice. While physical therapy improved the issue that resulted from my abnormal gait, it did not do much for the affected area. Ice has been the most effective treatment for me. It doesn't solve the problem, but it does numb up the area, relieving the pain for a short bit of time. I also use padding to alleviate the affected portion of my foot. This takes the pressure off of it while walking around, making it more bearable. As an incurable disease, that is all one can hope for - ways to cope and make living with it a tad more comfortable.

My advice to anyone with osteonecrosis: don't let it stop you. Does it hurt? Yes. I'd be lying if I say I haven't cried myself to sleep before from it hurting so much, but the good news is that it can't physically get any worse. The bone is dead. It will never get any worse than that. Osteonecrosis may take the life out of your bones, but don't let it take the life out of you. Don't let it take away the activities you love or keep you from new adventures.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

74006
houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee
nappy.co

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

134943
college students waiting in a long line in the hallway
StableDiffusion

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments