Hip replacement surgery has been around for 100 years. Doctors call it total hip arthroplasty, and it’s considered one of the most successful types of orthopedic surgery. As the technology and materials have evolved, so have medical training, post-surgery recovery, and results.
Osteoarthritis is the most common reason to need a hip replacement. If your hip pain interferes with daily activities and more conservative treatments haven’t helped, a hip prosthesis can address the pain and restore movement.
You might consider talking to your doctor about hip replacement if you’re experiencing hip pain that:
- Persists, despite pain medication
- Worsens with walking, even with a cane or walker
- Interferes with your sleep
- Affects your ability to go up or down stairs
- Makes it difficult to rise from a seated position
Today’s hip replacement surgery is accessible to more people affected by arthritis in the hip joints, regardless of age. In addition, today’s surgery addresses the fact that people are suffering from degenerative joint disease at a younger age, often as a result of living more active lifestyles and having more wear and tear on their joints. This means we want joint replacements that last longer and will work well for longer than the commonly-quoted 15 years without requiring additional surgery.
In the last few years, new surgical techniques like the anterior approach for total hip replacement offer less pain, faster recovery and easier mobility because the muscle tissues are spared. The surgeon works from the front of the hip and between the tissue without detaching connections from the hip and thighbones, making the anterior approach a less invasive one that requires fewer post-op hip precautions.
One major advance in hip surgery is the surgeon’s use of a precision-enhancing robotic arm to more accurately place the new parts and prevent complications. As a surgeon, I’m able to plan the surgery and implant components with greater accuracy and optimal alignment using a robotic arm as an extension of my hands. The new systems also allow for 3-D visuals using the patient’s CT scan to better guide the surgery.
Many people who have a hip replacement had been living with pain for a long time, and a less invasive surgery like the anterior approach allows them to have shorter recovery time and the ability to resume their normal activities faster. The addition of the robotic arm as an enhancement tool can further streamline the process. The hope is that as newer technologies become available, recovery times will continue to shorten and people whose mobility was previously compromised will find new freedom and quality of life.
In addition, we use longer-acting injectable medications that are lessening pain after surgery and allowing patients to get to rehab quicker.
After surgery, your surgeon and physical therapy team will continue to work with you to improve your movement and help you make the most of your recovery. Exercise will become a part of your daily routine as you rediscover your strength and regain use of your new joint and supporting muscles.
If you have a joint injury or concerns about long-term osteoarthritis pain, please contact Jacksonville Orthopaedic Institute, with locations across northeast Florida.
Meet Dr. Frykberg at the Y Healthy Living Center in Mandarin on March 27 at 12:30 pm; Talk With a Doc is a free event and is open to the community.