Anterior Approach Hip Replacement offers shorter recovery time
In recent years, more and more people are finding relief from pain, stiffness and disability through hip replacement surgery. In fact, in the past 20 years, numbers have doubled, with approximately 300,000 hip replacements surgeries performed each year.
Since its introduction in 1960, advancements in surgical techniques and technology have only enhanced the procedure's effectiveness. In fact, the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons had dubbed hip replacement the "most successful operations in all of medicine."
The Toll of Hip Pain
Even though our hips are among the strongest and most durable joints in the human body, they are also well-used and heavily relied upon. We depend on our hips every day, as they are essential all sorts of daily tasks:
• tying shoes
• getting out of a chair
• taking the stairs
With healthy hips, we can perform these actions with little or no thought. But if you factor in joint damage, inflammation and stiffness caused by injury or arthritis, simple tasks become mammoth challenges and often lead to disability.
The good news is that hip pain may respond to a number of treatments: medication, weight loss, physical therapy and low impact exercise. However, when the problem is severe, your doctor may recommend hip replacement surgery.
A Muscle-Sparing Approach
The anterior hip replacement is a relatively new, "tissue-sparing" approach that has gained momentum over the past decade. With the anterior approach, the surgeon reaches the joint from the front of the hip, rather than the side or back. By doing so, the surgeon does not have to cut through muscle tissue and operates through a much smaller incision of 4-5 inches (less than half of the traditional approach). The surgeon is able to do this with the help of a special operating table that has independent leg spars allowing him or her to maneuver the patient’s legs to perform the surgery through the small anterior incision.
Benefits of Anterior Hip Replacement
Potential benefits of anterior hip replacement include:
• shorter recovery time
• less muscle damage
• less scarring
• fewer restrictions and more freedom during recovery
Looking to learn more about joint pain?
Attend one of Monroe Clinic's free seminars, "The Good News About Joint Pain." For dates and registration, visit the "Events" section at monroeclinic.org.
Both Monroe Clinic orthopaedic surgeons, Dr. Jonathan Swindle and Dr. Lance Sathoff, are skilled in anterior hip replacement. For a consultation, call 608-324-2453.