THE STORY OF KRZYSZTOF – BONE INFECTION
Until an accident in 2015, Krzysztof was physically very active. He was developing many sport passions: skiing, figure skating, swimming, an in particular motorcycling. Since adolescence, he had been spending his entire spare time on single-track vehicles. During the last ride on a motorcycle, a heavy-loaded truck’s driver failed to yield the right of way. As a result of the collision, Krzysztof suffered the femur and knee crushing. During the accident, the tibia and fibula were fractured as well.
After the accident, Krzysztof underwent a total of 12 surgeries at various clinics in Poland. Following a very complex and protracted treatment process, it was possible to manage an acute infection; however, problems with complete healing of the fracture were not resolved, and the limb was completely nonfunctional.
At the end of December 2018, Krzysztof was admitted to Paley European Institute as one of its first patients. After a consultation with the Polish team, he received a complete diagnosis and a comprehensive treatment plan. Until then, physicians at previous clinics had focused on the calf and the bone infection. The treatment plan proposed at the Institute included an assessment of the entire musculoskeletal system and focusing on accompanying aspects, such as: non-union of the bone, shortening of the tibia and axis deviation in the damaged limb – knee, tibia, fibula and femur.
Physicians at Paley European Institute performed an innovative procedure of bone transport with the use of wires, according to their proprietary modification. During the first surgery, more than 11 cm of a dead bone destructed as a result of a chronic bacterial infection was removed and an external apparatus for bone transport was applied. After the formation of a new bone regenerate, the apparatus was removed and completely replaced by an internal fusion (intramedullary nail) in order to start a partial weight-bearing of the limb. This component is completely not visible from the outside and enables much earlier initiation of physiotherapy than other solutions.
Excision of a bone fragment and the limb lengthening is a method known for a long time. It is used in cases of various infections or inflammations, as well as osteonecrosis. Physicians at Paley European Institute have significantly improved the bone transport process by the use of novel techniques supporting this solution. Usually, patients with chronic bone inflammation (osteomyelitis) are “cured” by the use of high doses of antibiotics used for “silencing” of an active infection. In the case of Krzysztof, the treatment administered was aimed at complete removal of the diseased (dead) bone tissue and its replacement with his own, new and most of all healthy bone tissue, minimizing the risk of the latent infection recurrence.
During the bone regeneration and calcification, further treatment may be carried out and simple household chores may be performed. It was very important for Krzysztof who had been immobilized for almost 5 years. After the surgery at PEI, he can finally fulfill his dream about a walk with his wife and little son.