what is fusion??

Wobbly
Wobbly Member Posts: 58
edited 23. Apr 2017, 22:13 in Living with Arthritis archive
Hi hope everyone is coping??

I keep seeing things on fusion but i dont know what this is and have just read the post abt neck arthritis.
Does fusion happen to everyone?
Does it just happen in the neck?
Can it happen all over the body?
Does fusion choose which arthitis to fusion itself too??
How painful is it??
Don't suppose i can stop it happening can i??
Is there a difference between oa and devenerative joint disease as i think its the same thing??
I have oa neck/ spine/ hips /feet /facet joints

Sorry far toooooo many questions your help is very much appreciated

Many thanks

Wobbly xx

Comments

  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    A simple definition of fusion is to fix in one position, it can happen naturally or artificially via surgery. Joints are designed to bend, flex and maybe twist a little but, as our various flavours of disease develop, this becomes harder for them to do. I know of people on here who have had neck vertebrae fused, wrists and ankles too (some via surgery and for others naturally). None of mine have fused so I have no idea if it hurts. DD
  • WyleECoyote
    WyleECoyote Member Posts: 38
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Wobbly wrote:
    Hi hope everyone is coping??

    Ha! Thank you for asking. Not tonight. Not normally this bad but clearly the moon is moving through something or other or I'm having a hormonal spike or something because my OA is having a massive flare. This is my third time out of bed and topping up the pain relief. Since it makes me feel better to contribute to someone else I thought I'd have a bash at your questions and then the good folk of the forum can help both of us by letting us know if they can correct my assumptions or elucidate things a bit better. Thanks guys!

    I keep seeing things on fusion but i dont know what this is and have just read the post abt neck arthritis.

    Q Does fusion happen to everyone?
    A Nah. Not everyone.

    Q Does it just happen in the neck?
    A It can happen in just about any joint (I think). Everyone is different.

    Q Can it happen all over the body?
    A It's rare but there are cases. E.g. Ankylosing Spondilitis is an inflammatory disease of the spine which causes any number of those joints to fuse. But over the entire body for one person would be extremely rare.

    Q Does fusion choose which arthitis to fusion itself too??
    A Fusion is actually the production of new bone from an inflammatory reaction. So it's a process that joins healthy bone to healthy bone. It's just the bone between them that gets inflamed and then turns to bone. I was going to use an analogy of a rusted axel here but that might be slightly misleading.

    Q How painful is it??
    A Once it's fused it's not nearly as painful while it is inflamed and still moving (and rubbing against itself). Thus the reason why there are surgical fusions for pain relief. I've had a couple of surgical fusions. Disk and facet fusion of L-L5 and also sacroiliac joint fusion. Both reduced pain. (Particularly the disc and facet joint fusion. ) They are fused with titanium. But I still get through airport metal detectors. It's very James Bond.

    Q Don't suppose i can stop it happening can i??
    A I don't know the answer to that but I would expect the pain from your OA is worse than any eventual fusion of joints IF that was to occur so I wouldn't worry unduly. Dealing with the pain and associated symptoms of the OA would likely be your priority. It is for me anyway. Someone else from the forum might have a different perspective on this..

    Q Is there a difference between oa and devenerative joint disease as i think its the same thing??
    A OA is a type of degenerative joint disease, with inflammation (typically) and degeneration of joints that are under pressure for physical reasons (someone correct me if necessary please). E.g. I have OA of the spine because of the particularly acute angle of lordosis of my spine which places extra pressure at the most acute point of the spine. You can have arthritis that is rheumatic rather than osteopathic. My Dad does. I don't. I am very grateful for this.

    Q I have oa neck/ spine/ hips /feet /facet joints
    A Ouch ouch and ouch. I don't have the hips fortunately but I have varying degrees of some of the others; neck is pretty good actually, spine is a bit of a mess, feet aren't too flash but my facet joints were described by my Consultant as 'florid' hahaha and are my biggest challenge.

    Hope you are managing okay. If you are in the northern hemisphere at least the warmer weather while give you some relief I hope. It helps me enormously :-)

Who's Online

11
frogmorton
frogmorton
JET
JET
JustJo7
JustJo7
noddingtonpete
noddingtonpete
+7 Guests