Hip replacement (total hip arthroplasty) is a surgery where the surgeon removes the damaged sections of your hip joint and replaces them with parts typically constructed of metal, ceramic, and sturdy plastic. This surgery will help you alleviate severe pain due to arthritis. If your hip pain interferes with routine activities and nonsurgical treatments haven't helped or are no longer useful, then the hip replacement is a viable option for you.
Schedule an appointment with your doctor to improve your overall wellbeing and relieve your hip pain that can't be controlled by other treatments.
Need For Hip Replacement
The hip replacement surgery may be a choice after a hip fracture or for severe pain because of arthritis. Various types of arthritis periodically make the hip replacement surgery necessary:
Osteoarthritis: Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that affects mostly middle-aged and older adults. It damages the slick cartilage that surrounds the ends of bones and helps joints move smoothly.
Rheumatoid arthritis: Caused by an overactive immune system, this type of arthritis causes inflammation of the synovial lining of the joint.
Osteonecrosis: The bone might collapse and deform if there isn't enough blood supplied to the ball portion of the hip joint, resulting in a dislocation or fracture.
Hip replacement becomes necessary if your pain:
Persist, despite pain medication
Aggravate with walking, even with a cane or walker
Interfere with your sleep
Make it difficult to get dressed
Affect your ability to go up or downstairs
Make it difficult to rise from a seated position
How to prepare for Hip Replacement
The doctor will physically examine you and ask about your medical history and current medications.
Your orthopedic surgeon will examine your hip and analyze the range of motion in your joint and the strength of the surrounding muscles
The doctor will also order blood tests and an X-ray.
The doctor will evaluate your health conditions, and you could ask any questions relating to the procedure. The doctor may ask you to stop smoking and to avoid some medications that you might be taking.
During the procedure
The orthopedic surgeon will perform a surgical procedure, which will take a few hours. To operate a hip replacement:
The healthcare provider will make an incision over the front or side of your hip, through the layers of tissue
The doctor will remove diseased and damaged bone and cartilage, leaving healthy bone intact
To replace the damaged socket, new implants will be replaced in the prosthetic socket into your pelvic bone
The surgeon will replace the spherical ball on the top of your femur with the prosthetic ball, which is then attached to a stem that fits into your thighbone
New Techniques for hip replacement are continually evolving. To reduce recovery time and pain, surgeons continue to develop fewer invasive surgical techniques.
After the procedure
You'll be transferred to a recovery area for a few hours after surgery while your anesthesia wears off. The healthcare providers will monitor your blood pressure, alertness, pulse, pain or comfort level, and your need for medications.
Some people are allowed to go home on the same day, whereas some are admitted to the hospital for one or two nights. You are at an increased risk of blood clots in your legs and thus, to remove that complication, the following measures are used:
Moving early: The medical provider may request you to sit up and walk with crutches or a walker soon after surgery.
Applying pressure: You will be urged to wear elastic compression stockings or inflatable air sleeves similar to a blood pressure cuff on your lower legs. This process will aid you in keeping blood from pooling in the leg veins, reducing the chance that clots will form.
Blood-thinning medication: After surgery, your surgeon might prescribe an injected or oral blood thinner. This process depends on how soon you walk, how active you are, and your overall risk of blood clots.
Physical therapy: Your physical therapist will support you with exercises that you can do in the hospital and at home to speed recovery. They may recommend strengthening and mobility exercises and will help you learn how to use a walking aid, such as a walker, a cane, or crutches.
Home recovery and follow-up care
The doctors will offer you tips on caring for your new hip.
At home, try to place mundane items at waist level, so you won't have to bend down or reach up
After Six to 12 weeks from surgery, you'll have a follow-up appointment with your surgeon to make sure your hip is healing properly.