What To Expect During A Hip Replacement Surgery

Hip replacement, also known as arthroplasty is a surgical procedure where the diseased parts of the hip joint are removed and replaced with new artificial parts made of metal or plastic. Before you book for surgery packages online, it is important that you fully understand the need and procedure from start till recovery of this major surgery as it requires an intense healing time.

What To Expect During A Hip Replacement Surgery

Total hip replacement surgery

Hip replacement Surgery is a major surgery and recommended to people only when normal treatments like physiotherapy or steroid injections do not help relieve the pain. It involves replacement of the diseased cartilage and bone of the hip joint with artificial components. Doctors shall suggest this procedure in cases of:

– Severe pain, swelling and stiffness in the hip joint
– Reduced mobility
– Severe pain that interferes with the quality of sleep and life
– Difficulty in performing everyday tasks such as shopping or just getting up

Need for hip replacement surgery

Total hip replacement surgery is a viable solution for people dealing with mobility issues and debilitating hip pain. For some, the condition may arise due to an accident or injury while for others, it may be simply ageing. Other major causes for damage of the hip joint include:

– Osteoarthritis
– Rheumatoid arthritis
– Septic arthritis
– Hip fracture
– Ankylosing spondylitis (condition where the spine and other areas become inflamed)
– Bone dysplasia (disorder causing unusual bone growth)

Complications or risks involved

Although, advances in technology have greatly reduced the complications involved in hip replacement procedures, it does come with certain risks:

  • Difficulty with urination
  • Fracture of bone during or after surgery
  • Limited motion of the hip
  • Dislocation of the replaced hip
  • Loosening of the prosthesis
  • Differences in leg length
  • Injury to the blood vessels or nerves

Preparation

The hip replacement operation is a life-changing step that can end your chronic pain and enhance the quality of your life. This surgery requires a long recovery period, hence it is recommended you are well prepared for the post-recovery stage. Consider the following:

  • Arrange for your work and family schedules beforehand so that you get ample rest and assistance from friends and family post-surgery
  • Arrange for your transportation to and fro from the hospital
  • Rearrange furniture at home so that you have safe walkways
  • Set up items at home at an arm’s distance so that you can avoid stretching out or bending
  • Anti-inflammatory medications should be discontinued a week prior to the surgery, as it may affect platelet functioning and cause blood clotting
  • Stay active and strengthen the muscles around your hip. Keep doing gentle exercises like walking and swimming until your operation
  • The doctor may recommend an exercise regimen to enhance flexibility if your hip condition is good enough, as it will help with recovery
  • You may also be referred to a physiotherapist to assist you with helpful exercises
  • Eat balanced and nutritional meals and drink adequate quantities of water as you will need to have a strong and healthy body prior to operation for faster recovery
  • You may be suggested to donate blood for transfusion purposes so that it may be utilized during surgery. Your own blood shall be used as it would minimize risks associated with blood transfusion
  • Stop smoking if you do, as it impacts your lungs and blood vessels and may slow your recovery

Procedure

This surgery is carried out under the influence of general anesthesia or an epidural and usually takes about 60 to 90 minutes to be completed. The procedure involves the following steps:

  • The surgeon makes an incision on the front or side of your hip
  • He removes the diseased bone and cartilage and leaves the healthy ones intact
  • He places the prosthetic socket into the pelvic bone replacing the damaged one
  • He then implants the prosthetic ball on top of the femur replacing the diseased one that is attached to the stem fitted into the thighbone

Recovery

For the first four to six weeks, you may require a walking aid or crutch for support. Get enrolled in an exercise programme that is specially designed for your improvement. The doctor may enroll you with a physiotherapist to help you with exercises that will strengthen your hips. You shall be taught how to sit and bend with care without damaging your new hip. You would be given a short course of antibiotics to avoid any probable infections. Many patients are able to resume routine life within two to three months of surgery, but depending on your condition it can also take up to a year to heal.

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