You answered the question yourself.
Insurance reasons - I had none. Could not afford surgery in the US. Hardly
could afford it in Belgium.
FDA had not approved the BHR in the US. Not many doctors were performing
hip resurfacing. A very small handful had experience. In other countries,
doctors had tons of experience.
Personal choice. I read and learned from this group and the internet. I was
an older female with a loss of bone density, most US doctors would not touch
me or wanted bone density tests, etc. I could not afford all of that. Dr. De
Smet can read your bone density from your x-ray. He had done over 2600 hip
resurfacings when I went to him. He was experienced.
I read so many emails on this group from people who had wonderful experience
with De Smet, I knew it was the only place I was going to go. I would have
considered Dr. Bose, but he was 28 hours away.
Options were very different before the FDA approval and all the new doctors
learning hip resurfacing.
I will say, even today, I would still return to Dr. De Smet rather than go
to the newer doctors, especially if I had any special problems with my hips.
As far as I am concerned from all I have learned in the last 3 years - you
can't beat experience. My website is filled with medical studies and
personal stories. You can use the newer doctors - but even they will tell
you that they are not as experienced in advanced cases. I talk with them
via email because of my website. Fortunately, many are very honest in their
own evaluations and watch what cases they accept in the begining. Read Dr.
If you don't choose an honest one, then you can often end up with a THR
because they don't want to take a chance. For the experienced doctors - it
is not taking a chance, it is knowing what to do after performing 3000 or
That's my opinion. I won't argue with anyone - but I am sticking to it.
Fortunatley, the revision rate is still only less than 4% so people going to
the newer doctors are not gambling too much. These are the most current
the 4 % of problems and I would not want to be one of the statistics.
Decisions are not always as easy as we would like them. Many people like
myself still don't have insurance. I don't know many people with $30,000 -
50,000 or $80,000 for surgery. Heck, the US hospitals can't even hardly
tell you up front what it is going to cost. Been there and done that. I
could not get insurance back then and now that I have a BHR, can't ever get
insurance until I get on Medicare.
Pat in Ohio
3/15/06 LBHR De Smet
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