hip joint

What you should know about total hip replacement

Normal hip function is needed for mobility and to perform almost all of your usual daily activities. How conditions such as osteomyelitis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and traumatic arthritis may lead to the development of joint problems and in this case hip joint problem.  When your hip is injured or if it is painful due to arthritis, you may find it difficult to perform daily activities without mobility aids. When you develop such a problem your orthopedic doctor may make a decision to have hip replacement surgery

Factor that may lead to hip replacement surgery

If you answered is yes to almost all of the questions below, you may be a candidate for total hip replacement surgery a decision which is to be confirmed by your orthopedic doctor.

  • Hip pain that interferes with usual activities involving walking and bending.
  • Hip pain that persists when resting during the day or night.
  • Joint stiffness in the hip that affects moving or lifting your leg
  • Unsatisfactory relief from nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Unsatisfactory relief from pain medication?
  • Inadequate improvement after having tried physical therapy and the use of assistive and mobility aids devise.

Evaluation for hip replacement

Many of the patients who have undergone total hip replacement surgery are between 55 and 85 years old. However, there are individuals with years older or younger who also have undergone hip replacement surgery. Age is not the sole criteria when patients are evaluated for hip replacement surgery but also the following is put into consideration

  • The level of pain and disability.
  • General health of the patient.
  • Your medical history
  • Physical examination to assess the hip
  • Range of motion of the hip, hip alignment, and hip stability and strength.
  • X-ray to determine joint damage
  • Other imaging studies or bone scans are sometimes used to assess the condition of the bone and soft tissues of the hip.

Getting ready for your Surgery

Your orthopedic surgeon will guide you through their normal routine for hip replacement surgery. They will assign you a surgery date and give you a schedule for what should be done prior to surgery, from checking medical insurance to pre-op testing to autologous blood donation if needed. Once everything is in order for pre-surgical matters, you will be given information about what to expect during surgery. You will learn about your options for anesthesia, how long the surgery will take, how long you can expect to be in the hospital, and discharge planning. After surgery or post-op, you will be given rehabilitation instructions or home-going instructions.

What Are Possible Complications of Hip Replacement?

Almost all of the hip replacement joints done so far have been successful. However, there have been few complications encountered by a patient after surgery which at most times have been handled by doctors effectively. Below are some of the complications reported?

  • Dislocation
  • Some patients experience leg-length inequality after hip surgery
  • Blood clots in the leg veins or pelvis.
  • Nerve or blood vessel injury
  • Bleeding
  • Fracture
  • Some stiffness or residual pain
  • Joint infection

What to expect after hip replacement

Below are what you should look forward to after having a total hip replacement. This is crucial and important for your recovery and requires you to be conscious of certain important aspects for your recovery:

  • Do your post-op exercises as instructed by your physical therapist.
  • Balance rest and activity, especially until some restrictions are lifted by your doctor.
  • Follow instructions to prevent blood clots. If you are told to wear support hose, wear the support hose.
  • Know and recognize the signs of infection.
  • Get rid of throw rugs or extension cords that may provoke a fall.
  • Employ the use of assistive devices such as sock aid devices after the hip replacement to avoid bending and accident that may occur when wearing your shoes.



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