More than 300,000 people undergo total hip replacement each year in the U.S., mostly as a result of degenerative changes due to arthritis, but sometimes to correct other injuries or issues as well.
For years, total hip replacement surgery used two primary techniques which involved accessing the joint from the back (or posterior) or from the side (lateral). Both techniques, while effective, involve cutting major muscle groups, therefore making recovery longer and more uncomfortable.
Anterior hip replacement surgery is a minimally-invasive technique that accesses the hip from the front, sparing the major muscles. Thus, minimizing tissue damage and recovery occurs more quickly and with much less discomfort.
How to perform anterior total hip replacement?
Anterior hip replacement uses a specially-designed operating table that allows the hip joint to be carefully positioned so, it can be accessed from the front. The procedure can be performed using general anesthesia or regional anesthesia with sedation, depending on each patient’s specific needs.
Fluoroscopy is a special imaging technique to properly position the joint replacement and ensure that the fitting is accurate.
The technique uses one incision about four inches long in the front of the hip so, the muscles located on top of the joint can be carefully moved to one side without the need to cut through them.Then gently separate the thigh bone or femur from the cup-shaped socket portion of the joint, called the acetabulum.
The socket portion of the artificial joint needs to fit firmly and securely, so, it is necessary to clean the socket and smooth its surface. Once the socket portion is in place, it is time to insert a durable liner to help facilitate joint movement.
They will then prepare the end of the femur after the acetabulum portion of the joint is in place. The femur portion of the artificial joint comprises a stem which they will insert into the femur and a head component, which makes contact with the hip socket.
After a careful evaluation of the placement of all the components comes closing the incision then putting a sterile dressing. They will give you complete instructions for post-op care, including information about physical therapy before the discharge. That will help you learn to use your new joint as well as helpful guidelines to ensure optimal joint function.
Potential benefits of anterior hip replacement compared to the traditional hip replacement surgery, may include the following:
- Smaller incision
- Minimal soft tissue trauma
- Reduced post-op pain
- Less blood loss
- Shorter surgical time
- Faster healing time
- Less scarring
- Earlier mobilization
- Less post-operative restrictions
- Reduced hip dislocations
- Decreased hospital stay
Normally, after a posterior total hip replacement, your surgeon would give you instructions on hip precautions to prevent dislocating the new joint. Hip precautions are very restrictive and usually include the following:
- Avoid the combined movement of bending your hip and turning in your foot.
- You should sleep with a pillow between your legs for 6 weeks.
- Avoid crossing your legs and bending your hip past a right angle.
- Use an elevated toilet seat.
- Avoid bending over to pick things up. Grabbers are helpful as are shoe horns or slip on shoes.
- Avoid low chairs
Recurrent Hip Replacement
Joanne needed a new hip. Doctors replaced her old joint with a titanium stem-and ball and socket, but she continued to have dislocations.
Dr. Karkare, was able to resolve the problem, and she was up and walking around in just a few short days, with no more recurrent hip dislocations, and the story made it onto the local news.
Total Hip Replacement Case Studies
Why choose Dr. Kakare?
The anterior approach to total hip replacement surgery is a more recent advancement, and not every orthopedic surgeon has the skills and experience to perform the technique.
As a top joint replacement specialist in New York City, Dr. Karkare has extensive experience in anterior hip replacements, ensuring patients have the broadest array of safe and effective treatment options to relieve hip pain and other symptoms.
Before any procedure is performed, Dr. Karkare performs an in-depth evaluation of each patient to determine if an anterior approach could be a good choice or if another approach might be preferred.
This enables every patient to make an informed, educated decision so they can feel confident in their care every step of the way.
To schedule your evaluation, call (212)951-0182 or use our online contact form to learn more.