Total Hip Replacement
Total hip replacement surgery has become one of the most successful procedures performed by an orthopaedic surgeon. Newer surgical techniques and instrumentation continue to evolve leading to improve outcomes from this type of surgery.
Indications for this type of surgery can related to osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, avascular necrosis, history of congenital hip problems or as the result of prior injury/fracture. Surgery is often recommended for those who have tried conservative treatments including medications, activity modification, injections, use of an assistive device and physical therapy.
The surgery involves making an incision over the affected hip and carefully splitting the muscles that surround the joint. The worn out cartilage that makes up the socket is removed as is the end of the “ball joint”. A metal stem is placed down the femur. A metal ball is then placed on the top of the stem. The hip socket is replaced with a metal cup and thick plastic (polyethylene). This cup is either cemented in place or is held in my screws. The metal ball fits into the thick plastic and allows for smooth range of motion to the hip. The muscles surrounding the hip are reattached at the end of the procedure.
This type of procedure is performed in a hospital setting. Patients typically spend up to a few days in the hospital following surgery. Physical therapy is usually started immediately following surgery to help regain mobility and strength.
Recovery from total hip replacement surgery can take many months depending on a number of factors.
Complications from this type of surgery are not that common. Some of the potential problems that can arise that are associated with this surgery include blood clots, a fracture to the surrounding bone, dislocation of the prosthesis, infection, heart attack, stroke, and reactions to anesthesia.