I'd like to chime in here...as the mom of a 22 yo who has Osteonecrosis after only 4 months of Prednisone use....please don't think this can't happen to you. If you've been told you have bursitis, or you "suspect" arthritis because your hips/knees/shoulders hurt, it would be in your best interest to have those joints evaluated with an MRI. Had we not investigated my daughter's knee pain, she'd still be walking around with achey joints that would be getting worse without our knowing that her bones were really dying. Because we found it early (as devastating as it was to find out), and get her joint sparing core decompression surgery which hopefully will halt the progression of this disease. You will recognize my story in the link that Sue has posted from the jpouch.org website. Here are a few academic sources that I like to post in case anyone wants to investigate further:
"Because measures to preserve the joint are associated with better prognoses when
the diagnosis of AVN is made early in the course of the disease and because the
results of joint replacement therapy are poorer in younger age groups than in
older patients, it is critical to diagnose AVN as early as possible to prevent
or delay progression of the disease"
"The diagnosis and treatment of nontraumatic osteonecrosis of the femoral head.
Etienne G, Mont MA, Ragland PS.
Sinai Hospital of Baltimore, Rubin Institute for Advanced Orthopaedics, Center
for Joint Preservation and Reconstruction, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.
"Osteonecrosis of the femoral head is a potentially debilitating disease that
frequently affects young patients in the third through fifth decades of life. If
untreated, this disease will result in total destruction of the hip joint;
therefore, early diagnosis and intervention are essential to optimize outcome.
Although the etiology of osteonecrosis of the femoral head is poorly understood,
awareness of well-established risk factors and associated disorders can assist
in early detection and possible prevention of hip joint destruction. All
patients with symptomatic hip disease should undergo standard radiographic
evaluation; however, MRI remains the most sensitive diagnostic modality.
Depending on the stage of the disease, options for treatment range from
minimally invasive procedures such as core decompression to total joint
20 yo daughter w/ Pancolitis
Step 1 colectomy/jpouch creation 11/27/06
Step 2 takedown 2/9/07
VSL #3 DS
21 yo Daughter diagnosed with right shoulder, bilateral wrist,
bilateral elbow, bilateral knee, and bilateral ankle avascular necrosis
(aka Osteonecrosis) as a result of Prednisone use