It is very common after an intestinal transplant to require some form of joint replacement. This is because long term use of steroids to prevent rejection of the new organ can lead to a condition called avascular necrosis (AVN). AVN results in lack of blood supply to an individual’s joints which can cause bone death. If the bone death is extensive, the joint can collapse. Collapse of large joints, such as the hips and knees, require joint replacements.
“Total joint replacement is a surgical procedure in which parts of an arthritic or damaged joint are removed and replaced with a metal, plastic or ceramic device called a prosthesis. The prosthesis is designed to replicate the movement of a normal, healthy joint.” (1)
The two most common types of joint replacement are:
1. Hip replacement
2. Knee replacement
The biggest risk joint replacement procedures have for transplant patients is the risk of infection due to the weak immune system. This is why most surgeons try to avoid placing hardware into a transplant patient, if possible.
To read more about the different procedures, what to expect, complications, and recovery please visit this page.
1. Total Joint Replacement - OrthoInfo - AAOS. (n.d.). Retrieved June 13, 2020, from