Hip replacement surgery is a procedure in which a doctor surgically removes a painful hip joint with arthritis and replaces it with an artificial joint often made from metal and plastic components. Arthritis caused in the hip joint is because either the socket of the hip or the thighbone is injured or becomes diseased. This leads to heavy pain, difficulty in walking and trouble completing everyday tasks. Hip Replacement Surgery is often adopted when other methods of treatment to have failed and the pain still persists. Post your Hip Replacement Surgery, the pain at the hip joint is relieved, making your movement smoother.
People between the age of 50 and 80 are the most common ones to get a Hip Replacement Surgery done. The Hip Replacement Surgery is usually carried out to treat arthritis caused at the hip joint.
Arthritis is a disorder that is responsible for breaks the cushion between the bones, known as Cartilage. Without cartilage, when the bones rub against each other, severe friction is caused leading to heavy pain between the joints.
A hip replacement may be used to mainly treat three types of arthritis:
• Rheumatoid Arthritis: A chronic inflammatory disorder affecting many joints, including those in the hands and feet.
• Osteoarthritis: A type of arthritis that occurs when flexible tissue at the ends of bones wears down.
• Traumatic Arthritis: Damage to the joint caused by an injury or trauma
Initially, doctors prescribe and resort to several methods to treat arthritis. This may include the use of walkers, physiotherapy, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen.
If your arthritis does not respond to such medical measures, getting a hip replacement may seem the best solution.
However, Hip replacement surgery can also be used to treat several other health conditions.
• Hip Replacement Surgery is performed on a patient if a tumour develops in the hip joint.
• In the case of emergency, Hip replacement may also be used to amend a fracture in the hip joint or the thighbone.
• A condition called avascular necrosis of the hip often requires a total hip replacement.
The replacement hip that would be planted in place of your old hip is made up of four components:
• a metal socket
• a liner to help the ball move easily within the socket
• a metal or ceramic ball to replace the femoral head
• a metal rod used to stabilize the thigh bone to which the ball is attached.
For joint prosthesis, you may be offered several options from your doctor.
• Most doctors go for and highly recommend un-cemented joint prosthesis. This procedure allows your bone to grow into the prosthesis over time. This kind of prosthesis may take longer than usual to stick to the bone and hence the recovery time is also longer.
• On the other hand, a cemented prosthesis is attached to the hip with bone cement for quick attachment. This is a better option for adults especially the older ones (who are not very active)as this is quicker.
• Muscle sparing hip replacement: This procedure is generally performed through anterior or posterior, which spares cuts through the muscles, thereby reducing pain and recovery time.
There mainly two types of Hip Replacement Procedure: Unilateral Hip Replacement and Bilateral Hip Replacement Surgery. They are illustrated below:
• Unilateral Hip Replacement: In case of unilateral hip replacement, artificial parts are used in place of diseased hip joint parts of just one hip. This type of treatment is required at the last stage of the degenerative hip disease.
• Bilateral Hip Replacement: In the case of highly diseased hips, the patient may need to get both his hips replaced. The Bilateral hip replacement is then performed which replaces both hips during a single surgery. Bilateral hip replacement is performed by one team doing one hip surgery after the other. The operation is done under a single anaesthetic and takes two to three hours.
After your Hip Replacement Surgery, you will be staying in the hospital for about 3-5 days. Full recovery from a hip joint replacement takes about three to six months. A cemented joint prosthesis has the longest recovery time.To ensure a smooth recovery post your Hip Replacement Surgery, you will need to:
• Have someone help you most of the times during the first few weeks
• Get regular therapy sessions.
• Make some changes at home, such as getting a raised toilet seat if you have an usually low toilet
• Have someone pick you and drop you to places so that you don't cause too much movement immediately post your Hip Replacement Surgery.
The risks and complications that arise due to the Hip Replacement Surgery are not very serious. As a matter of fact, most complications rise when as a patient, you're not taken proper care of post your Hip Replacement Surgery. The risks of getting a Hip Replacement Surgery are:
• Joint Dislocation
• Change in leg length
• Hip stiffness
• Increased pain
• Inflammation and swelling
• Allergic reaction to medications