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Hip Replacement Surgery

Hip Replacement Surgery

Hip replacement surgery, medically also referred to as total hip arthroplasty, is the surgical procedure of removing a diseased hip joint and replacing it with an artificial one called prosthesis.

Thanks to modern research in material technologies, hip prostheses are engineered to be biocompatible, which means that the devices are designed to be accepted by the body, to resist corrosion, wear and degradation. Hip prostheses are normally made of metallic alloys or ceramic.

Hip replacement surgery is performed for patients who suffer from:

The whole set of treatments related to hip arthroplasty can relieve pain and restore motion and function to the hip joint, which will greatly improve the patient’s involvement in normal daily activities. Hip arthroplasty must always be followed by an extensive rehabilitation period.

Hip Replacement Surgery – Causes, Symptoms and Risks

Before surgery, depending on the causes and symptoms of the condition, the doctor will try to cure the hip joint damage through other treatments such as:

  • Pain medications
  • Physical therapy
  • Exercise

Conditions that require hip replacement surgery include:

  • Bone tumor
  • Broken hip
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Osteonecrosis

The most common symptom that leads to hip replacement is severe, persisting pain that makes the patient unable to participate in everyday activities. Simple motion like walking, changing body posture, even lying in bed becomes troublesome because of the pain, which may be unresponsive to medication. The inability to perform in simple daily activities, sleep deprivation and the torments of pain drive people to undertake total heap replacement.

As any surgery, total hip arthroplasty involves certain risks:

  • Blood clots – They can be treated with blood-thinning medication and compression devices to increase blood flow.
  • Infection – It occurs due to incisions in the deeper tissue, but can be treated with antibiotics.
  • Fracture – Some fractures can be corrected during surgery with bone grafts.
  • Dislocation – It can happen after surgery, due to the excessive movement of the patient. It can be solved by bracing the patient in order to maintain the correct position.
  • Loosening – This complication always requires a new surgery.
  • Prosthesis breakage – It also makes a new surgery unavoidable.
  • Leg length change – This incidence requires strengthening and stretching the muscles.
  • Joint stiffening – (also called ossification) requires medication or preventive radiation therapy.
  • Wearing off – It may happen if the patient had total hip arthroplasty in his early years.

Hip Replacement Surgery

In the pre-surgery phase the orthopedic surgeon has to make sure about the eligibility of the patient. For that reason the doctor will perform a comprehensive examination, request medical history, revise current medications and perform a physical examination. Candidates who are not healthy enough cannot undergo surgery.

Then the surgeon examines the hip, its range of motion, and the strength of the muscles around it.

Some other tests may include blood tests, X-ray and MRI.

In order to have excellent results after the hip replacement surgery, the orthopedic surgeon will suggest starting a surgery preparatory exercise program. When the muscles are well-established and are more flexible, better outcomes and faster recovery can be expected. Patients who suffer from advanced osteoarthritis, however, necessitate a distinct evaluation.

Hip replacement surgery is an outpatient procedure, performed under general anesthesia or spinal block. Preventive medications for blood clots are given before surgery.

First, the surgeon cuts over the front side of the hip, removes the diseased bone and cartilage and leaves only the healthy bones in their place. The prosthetic implants are placed into the pelvic bone; the round top of the femur is also replaced and attached to the stem which fits the thighbone.

After the procedure, blood clot prevention still remains a priority. The surgeon will instruct the patient to walk using crutches, apply pressure by wearing elastic compression stocking and take blood-thinning medication.

Physical therapy should also be part of the regular daily activities, which will soon enable the patient to walk without assistance.

Hip Replacement Cost

There is a huge variation in hip replacement cost calculations: in the U.S. it can range from $12,000 to $120,000, depending on the location, the medical facility and the technique applied. Hip replacement surgery is one of the most frequently performed procedures offered by global medical tourism. International hospitals have great reputation and word-to-mouth information often has more convincing power than any advertisement. People tend to look for a hip replacement abroad because expenses can be vastly reduced and many confirm with utmost satisfaction the special care they receive as a foreign patient.

on 01/14/2014
4 / 5 stars
Richard Smith
Hip Replacement Surgery
3 years ago, I had a hip replacement in Austria I couldn't beleive that I would actually be on my feet again. The article covers everything there is to know about hip arthroplasty but actually doesn't emphasize the long physical therapy involved after surgery. Online medical services found me a nice accommodation near the hospital for two months, it was lovely and relaxing
on 02/14/2014
5 / 5 stars
Caroline Parker
Hip replacement surgery
A year agoI had a full hip replacement done due to severe arthiritis , the pain before the operation was unbearable, two weeks after surgery and I was able to walk with a cane , I forgot to add that I'm 49 years old and not in good shape, anyway I can say that I feel much better, now that a year has passed. Thanks to onlinemedical toursim who took care of everything, the flight to Mexico and the therapy clinic for recovery, which I have to admit put me on my feet again (thank you Fernanda) and thanks again for giving me the opportunity to go on with my life