Do I need a Hip Replacement?
You may have been adviced to have a Hip replacement surgery when the hip joint is worn out or damaged. This then affects your mobility and you are in pain even while resting or most of the time or your sleep gets affected. When there is no effect on pain relief by NSAID drugs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs).
Some common reasons for hip replacement surgery are:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- After a hip fracture
- Childhood hip disease for example bone growth issue (bone dysplasias)
Are Hip replacements successful?
Total Hip Replacement (Arthroplasty), are extremely successful procedures which improve function and thus quality of life.
There are various types of hip replacement depending upon what type of material is used or whether cement is used to glue the hip replacement. It also depends upon the quality of your natural bone, how active you are and hyour lifestyle. Also to consider if you have any underlying conditions which may affect the successful outcome of your hip replacement. Your surgeon, will assess your problem and will discuss with you as to what hip replacement would be most appropiate for you giving a good outcome and a long term result.
Yes. Artificial hip joint has 2 components. The Socket which fits in the pelvic bone and then the head which moves inside the socket. Head sits on the stem which goes into the thigh bone. Sockets can be made of metal, or plastic. The linining inside these sockets in which the head moves can be made of plastic, ceramic or metal. The stem is made of various types of metal depending if this is going to be cemented or uncemented (press-fit) into your thing bone. This can be discussed with your surgeon at your consulation.
The complication rate following hip replacement surgery is low. Serious complications, such as joint infection, occur in less than 2% of patients. Major medical complications, such as heart attack or stroke, occur even less frequently. However, chronic illnesses may increase the potential for complications. Commonly occruing risks can be:
- Blood clots (DVT or PE): This can be dangerous because a piece of a clot can break off and travel to the lung, heart or, rarely, the brain. Blood-thinning medications can reduce this risk.
- Infection: Most infections are treated with antibiotics, but a major infection near the new hip might require surgery to remove and replace the artificial parts.
- Dislocation of the joint
- Altered leg length
- Loosening of the hip implant
- Nerve injury, foot drop or injury to blood vessels.
You are admitted on the day of the surgery having gone through the Joint Replacement classes and your pre-op assessment checkup prior to your admission.
The surgical procedure usually takes from 1 to 2 hours. Your orthopaedic surgeon will remove the damaged cartilage and bone and then position new metal, plastic, or ceramic implants to restore the alignment and function of your hip.
After surgery, you will be moved to the recovery room where you will remain for several hours while your recovery from anesthesia is monitored. After you wake up, you will be taken to your hospital room or the ward. You will be monitored and will be reviewed by the physiotherapist and occupational therapist and as soon as you get your mobility and independence, you are allowed to go home. This can be as soon as next day or after 2-3 days depending upon your overall health.
You will require a pair of crutches or some walking aid for a few weeks following surgery and you will be given a physical exercise programme to gradually build strength in your joint and muscles, while increasing the walking distance gradually.
The activities one may be able to do after a successful Hip Replacement would include unlimited walking, swimming, hiking, biking, dancing, Golf, and light Badminton or Tennis. Most surgeons will advise against high impact activities. It is therefore important to have realistic expectations about the outcome following a hip replacement.