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Hip Surgery: Is It Right for You?

When is Hip Surgery Recommended?

In general, the doctors at CORE Orthopedics and Sports Medicine will make a good-faith effort to resolve and manage hip pain with more conservative, non-surgical treatments.

However, if the damage is too severe or those methods don’t improve your condition, your doctor may recommend total hip surgery. People who benefit from surgery often have the following:

  • Hip pain that limits everyday activities, such as walking or bending
  • Hip pain that continues while resting
  • Stiffness in the hip that limits the ability to move or lift the leg
  • Inadequate pain relief from anti-inflammatory drugs, physical therapy, or walking support.

*Important Safety Note: Hip replacement surgery is intended to relieve hip pain and improve hip function. However, implants may not produce the same feel or function as your original hip. There are potential risks with hip replacement surgery, such as loosening, fracture, dislocation, wear, and infection, that may result in the need for additional surgery. The longevity of implants depends on many factors, such as types of activities and weight. Do not perform high-impact activities such as running and jumping unless your surgeon tells you the bone has healed and these activities are acceptable. Early device failure, breakage, or loosening may occur if you do not follow your surgeon’s limitations on activity level. Early failure can happen if you do not guard your hip joint against overloading due to activity level, failure to control body weight or accidents such as falls. Talk to your doctor to determine what treatment may be best for you.

Hip Surgery: Know Your Options

Something not many patients realize is that hip pain doesn’t always mean they need hip surgery. Here at CORE Orthopedics and Sports Medicine, we recognize that there are other, more conservative options to alleviate hip pain.

Only when conservative measures fail, or the severity of the pain is unbearable do we start discussing hip surgery. Here are some non-surgical options our physicians might discuss during a consultation:

Exercise and Weight Control

We’ve seen patients experience marked improvements to their hip pain when they are prescribed an exercise plan. In fact, research shows exercise is one of the best treatments for osteoarthritis. Some benefits could include decreased pain, improved flexibility, and maintaining weight.

In addition, a healthy diet might help with weight loss or maintenance, which in turn could reduce stress on weight-bearing joints and eliminate further injury or damage.

Physical Therapy

Oftentimes, our physicians prescribe physical therapy to treat pain. Your physical therapist will work with you so you can learn the proper technique, and they’ll specifically design and modify exercises for your condition.

Benefits of physical therapy include the building of supporting muscles and the loosening of stiff, painful muscles.

Medication

Osteoarthritis pain is often made more manageable by drugs like acetaminophen, NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), topical pain relieving creams and sprays, narcotic painkillers, corticosteroids, and hyaluronic acid.

Be sure to consult your doctor before trying any of these medications for pain relief. Additionally, non-drug treatments for pain include warm baths, hot packs, or cold packs.

Injections

Sometimes, our physicians prescribe steroid injections for hip pain relief. The efficacy of this treatment varies from patient to patient, so be sure to discuss this option thoroughly with your doctor.

Pain relief could come by way of many other options, as well. There is no one-size-fits-all answer to hip pain for all patients. Make sure you consult your physician before embarking on any course of treatment to ensure you will get the maximum benefit for your condition.

What is Hip Replacement Surgery?

Hip replacement surgery is a procedure in which the hip joint is replaced by a prosthetic implant. The procedure targets and removes damaged hip bone and cartilage in order to provide pain relief for patients. Oftentimes, patients who undergo hip replacement surgery see a noticeable improvement in their quality of life.

Here at CORE Orthopedics and Sports Medicine, we know hip replacement surgery is a big decision. If you’re considering hip surgery, you shouldn’t feel alone.

In fact, more than 340,000 total hip replacement surgeries are performed each year in the US. Even more comforting is the fact that the US Department of Health and Human Services considers total hip replacement to be one of the most successful and cost effective interventions in medicine.

While you make your decision about hip replacement surgery, please do take into account the 90-95% success rate for 10 years post-surgery patients.

We do recommend that you not take the decision to undergo hip surgery lightly. It should be a decision you make after speaking with your physician, orthopedic surgeon, and your family. In addition to the mechanics and benefits of the actual procedure, you’ll also need to consider the commitment needed for pre- and post-operation care.

*Important Safety Note: Hip replacement surgery is intended to relieve hip pain and improve hip function. However, implants may not produce the same feel or function as your original hip. There are potential risks with hip replacement surgery such as loosening, fracture, dislocation, wear and infection that may result in the need for additional surgery. Longevity of implants depends on many factors, such as types of activities and weight. Do not perform high impact activities such as running and jumping unless your surgeon tells you the bone has healed and these activities are acceptable. Early device failure, breakage or loosening may occur if you do not follow your surgeon’s limitations on activity level. Early failure can happen if you do not guard your hip joint from overloading due to
activity level, failure to control body weight, or accidents such as falls. Talk to your doctor to determine what treatment may be best for you.

What Are the Types of Hip Surgery Offered by Dr. Kuesis?

Anterior Hip Replacement, Anterior Approach

With the exception of the incision used to access the hip joint, the Anterior Hip Replacement is the same as a total hip replacement. 

The surgeon will access the hip joint from the front anterolateral portion of the hip, as opposed to the side or back. This will allow the surgeon to maneuver between major muscles of the hip area, preserving the tissue and minimizing recovery time.

The major benefits of the anterior hip replacement include quicker recovery time, less postoperative restrictions, and patients can go home on the same day.

Mini Total Hip Replacement

This type of hip replacement has a smaller incision site, minimizing recovery time and pain.

The surgeon will apply a small incision to access the damaged tissue portion of the hip joint and remove the femur and damaged femoral head. If there is any damaged cartilage or bone, the surgeon will remove it at this time. In order to attach metal components, the end of the femur is hollowed out and the implant is placed into the hollowed out top. The surgeon will attach a metal ball to the stem of the implant, then join the components to create the new hip joint. 

Total Hip Replacement

In this type of procedure, the damaged hip joints are replaced with implants that act as the balls and sockets of a healthy hip.

The surgeon will remove the damaged head of the femur and any damaged cartilage and bone from the hip socket. Following the removal of the femur and damaged tissue, a metal socket is placed into the hip cavity, followed by a liner that is pressed into the hip socket. In order to attach metal components, the end of the femur is hollowed out and the implant is placed into the hollowed out top. The surgeon will attach a metal ball to the stem of the implant, then join the components to create the new hip joint. 

Hip Revisions

Unlike traditional total hip replacements, the femoral head is not removed during this procedure.

An incision site will be created to allow access to the femoral head, which will be trimmed and capped with a smooth metal covering. All damaged cartilage and bone located within the socket will be removed. A metal shell will replace the removed tissue, the same as a traditional hip replacement. 

Hip Joint Injection

The physician will inject medicine into the hip joint, helping to locate the pain and reduce it simultaneously.

In some procedures, the use of Ultrasound or X-Ray machines can be used to increase the precision of the injection. The medicine used in this procedure is designed to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. 

Hip Arthroscopy

This procedure is designed to diagnose and treat problems in the hip joint.

Typically an outpatient procedure, it examines the inside of the hip joint using arthroscopic instruments. By inserting arthroscopic cameras and injecting expanding fluid into the joint, this will allow the surgeon to have a direct view of any problem areas.

As soon as these problem areas are identified, the surgeon will correct them with the aid of arthroscopic tools and a video monitor. 

Arthroscopic Surgery for Femoral-Acetabular Impingement (FAI)

If the patient suffers from Femoral-Acetabular Impingement, this minimally invasive hip procedure may be recommended and performed as a way to identify and correct problem areas. Inserting arthroscopic cameras and injecting expanding fluid into the joint will allow the surgeon to have a direct view of any problem areas.

As soon as these problem areas are identified, the surgeon will correct them with the aid of arthroscopic tools. This procedure could include removing loose or damaged tissue, repairing a torn labrum with sutures, or filing down growths to provide proper joint movements. 

Be sure to thoroughly and clearly explain what you are experiencing to your surgeon, as well as describe your lifestyle. They will discuss the technique they recommend for your particular case, and you can take the best steps to increase your quality of life. 

*Important Safety Note: Hip replacement surgery is intended to relieve hip pain and improve hip function. However, implants may not produce the same feel or function as your original hip. There are potential risks with hip replacement surgery such as loosening, fracture, dislocation, wear and infection that may result in the need for additional surgery. The longevity of implants depends on many factors, such as types of activities and weight. Do not perform high-impact activities such as running and jumping unless your surgeon tells you the bone has healed and these activities are acceptable. Early device failure, breakage or loosening may occur if you do not follow your surgeon’s limitations on activity level. Early failure can happen if you do not guard your hip joint against overloading due to activity level, failure to control body weight, or accidents such as falls. Talk to your doctor to determine what treatment may be best for you.

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Testimonials

Anthony

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Anthony

Knee surgery Patient of Dr. Daniel Kuesis

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Isabella

Knee surgery Patient of Dr. Daniel Kuesis

Julie

Bilateral Hip Patient of Dr. Daniel Kuesis

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