Friday, August 29, 2008

What is Avascular Necrosis?

Avascular Necrosis is one of many complications of Sickle Cell Disease. This condition is a result of temporary or permanent loss of blood supply to bones. Without blood, bone tissue dies and causes the bone to collapse. If dead bone tissue is near a joint (hip or knee), the joint may also collapse.

Is this painful? YES

I was diagnosed with Avascular Necrosis (also known as Osteonecrosis) in 1992. After having multiple Sickle Cell "crisis" in my legs, the lack of blood supply to my hip joints over-time caused Avascular Necrosis in both my hips. The cartilage has also decayed causing bone-on-bone exposure. When I walk, sometimes I hear a crunching sound from joint and bone rubbing against each other. The only long-term treatment for this condition is hip replacement.

A few years later, I was also diagnosed with Avascular Necrosis in my right knee which also causes joint pain and swelling. The eventual treatment for this condition is a knee replacement.

Am I afraid? NO

I have found herbs and vitamins that strengthen bones, help with pain, reduce swelling, and have given me some relief (and postponed the hip and knee replacement).

NOTE: I drink LOTS OF WATER everyday and I don't take any of these items everyday. I alternate them and sometimes I rest my system and don't take anything at all. Everything in moderation!!!!!!

Here's what I take:

Osteo Renew - for bone strengthening
Women's Ultra Mega - for bone health
any Multi-vitamin - any brand for vitamins A-zinc
any Antioxidant (with Green Tea, Grape Seed and Pine Bark) - to keep infection down.
Folic Acid - for blood
B-12 - for blood
Maxi-Minerals - for extra minerals needed for bone health
MSM - for joint and cartilage health
Garlic - for overall infection reduction
Iron - for blood
Cod Liver Oil - for vitamins A & D and joint lubrication
Flax Seed Oil - for overall health and joint lubrication
Arnica massage oil - to massage on knee and hip joints for pain
Yogi Joint Comfort Tea - drink tea to help relieve pain (It works!)
Echinacea/Golden Seal Tea - drink for immune health (helps cold/flu)

It's 2008, I'm not dancing anymore, but I'm still walking and still thankful for no titanuim replacements in my bones. Yeah!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, August 22, 2008


Doctor's at Emory University and Harvard Medical School are working for long-term solutions to find a cure for Sickle Cell Disease, not just a treatment.

Chris is one story about receiving a bone marrow transplant. The long-term results are yet to be seen. But, let's cheer on the doctors for making these treatments available.

Saturday, August 2, 2008


This is not uncommon. When admitted into the hospital, some Sickle Cell patients encounter doctors unfamiliar with Sickle Cell Disease. Some doctors may think you're on drugs, over-reacting to pain, or unsure of how to treat you. The more we talk about Sickle Cell Disease, the more doctors will investigate this disease and educate themselves.