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Hip Replacement Surgery

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Hip Replacement Surgery in Staten Island, NY

The hip joint plays an important role in helping people walk comfortably and have a full range of motion. If it starts to deteriorate, causing pain and limited movement, hip replacement surgery may be recommended. Richmond University Medical Center is a multi-specialty provider of comprehensive medical care to patients on Staten Island, New York, including orthopedic surgeries like hip and other joint replacements. Learn more about hip replacement surgery at Richmond University Medical Center.

Doctor explaining hip X-ray scan to hip replacement patient

What Is Hip Replacement Surgery?

The hip is one of the largest joints in the body and it plays a crucial role in allowing someone to move around comfortably. Over time, the hip joint can wear down and be damaged, causing pain and stiffness. To treat it, some patients may be recommended for hip replacement surgery, also called total hip arthroplasty.

A hip replacement is a type of joint replacement surgery in which the damaged joint is replaced by an artificial one. The artificial joint is usually made from metal, ceramic, or hard plastic, and can help improve function and reduce pain. Hip replacement surgeries are often recommended for people suffering from conditions like:

  • Osteoarthritis: This condition causes damage to the cartilage between the bones, causing pain, and is the most common reason for a hip replacement.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis: This is a condition causing inflammation that damages the cartilage and bone, leading to pain.
  • Osteonecrosis: This is a condition where blood flow to part of the bone is disrupted, causing pain.
  • Bone disease: Disorders like bone dysplasia cause abnormal development of joints like the hip that may require replacement.
  • Hip fracture, injury, or trauma: These are often caused by falls, car crashes, and other accidents.

However, not all people with these conditions will have severe symptoms that require hip replacement. People of all ages can receive hip replacements, but they are done mostly on people aged 60 to 80.

When Is Hip Replacement Surgery Needed?

Hip replacements are usually only recommended when the patient experiences severe pain that interferes with their movement and daily life. Some of the signs a hip replacement may be necessary include:

  • Pain in the hip when walking, sitting, or standing
  • Stiffness and tension in the hip
  • Insufficient relief from other methods like physical therapy, activity limitations, and pain medications

Hip replacement surgery can offer patients significant pain relief and increased movement, with a modern artificial hip joint lasting as long as 15 years. However, hip replacement surgery is not recommended for all patients, especially those with certain health conditions like a hip infection, severe osteoporosis, severe muscle weakness, or morbid obesity.

Preparing for Hip Replacement Surgery

Preparing for hip replacement surgery generally involves two kinds of preparation: medical exams and tests to get approved, and then more personal planning for right before and after surgery.

Approval Preparation

Getting approved for surgery usually requires a medical exam, blood tests, and X-rays to confirm that the patient is healthy enough to handle the surgery and that it is the best treatment option. The surgeon will also discuss the patient’s medical history, medication list, and any questions regarding the procedure. The surgeon may also give guidelines on limiting the use of tobacco or certain medications before the surgery.

Personal Preparation

Although hip replacement surgery patients can return home shortly after the surgery, they will not have full range of motion for a while and will need assistance with some tasks. Patients should make sure they have a ride home after surgery and arrange for help with things like cooking, bathing, and laundry.

Patients can further prepare by ensuring they have the necessary walking aids like a walker or cane to use after surgery. Making modifications to the home like adding sturdy shower benches, secure handrails, and firm pillows can help patients be ready for recovery at home.

By properly preparing for hip replacement surgery, patients can optimize their chances of a smooth and speedy recovery.

Process of Hip Replacement Surgery

Hip replacement surgery is one of the most successful operations in medicine and has been successfully performed since the early 1960s. Hip replacement surgeries are performed by orthopedic surgeons who specialize in the technique. The patient will be prepared for surgery by the medical team and given anesthesia to numb them. During the surgery process, the orthopedic surgeon will:

  • Make a small incision near the hip, typically from the side or back
  • Remove damaged parts of the joint, cartilage, or bone
  • Insert a prosthetic hip joint made of metal, ceramic, or plastic in the pelvic bone
  • Close the incision with sutures or staples

The surgery typically only takes one to two hours to complete, depending on whether the replacement is partial or total. In a total hip replacement, both the ball and the socket are replaced, while in a partial hip replacement, only the ball is replaced.

Recovery From Hip Replacement Surgery

After hip replacement surgery, the patient will be sent to a recovery room to be monitored until the anesthesia wears off. Depending on whether the surgery is performed in a hospital or outpatient surgery center, the patient may stay overnight or go home the same day. Once the patient is discharged, they should follow their medical team’s instructions on pain management, activity limitations, walking aids, and physical therapy. This helps them to recover properly, as the muscles and tendons need time to heal and become stable after surgery.

Frequently Asked Questions About Hip Replacement Surgery

Can hip replacement surgery be done minimally invasively?

Hip replacement surgeries are generally done with a traditional open approach, but they can also be done using a minimally invasive method that uses smaller incisions. This approach can offer benefits such as quicker recovery times, shorter hospital stays, and lower risk of muscle damage. However, it is not suitable for all patients.

Can both hips be replaced at the same time?

Typically, patients undergo hip replacement surgery on one hip at a time, but if both hips are affected, the patient may be eligible for a bilateral hip replacement, in which both hips are replaced at the same time. This is usually recommended for healthy patients who can handle a longer surgery and recovery.

Are there risks to hip replacement surgery?

As mentioned above, hip replacement surgeries are one of the most successful, and therefore the rate of serious complications is low, occurring in less than 2% of patients. However, there are some risks to be aware of that can happen in rare circumstances, which include:

  • Infection
  • Blood clots in the leg or pelvis veins
  • Dislocation
  • Nerve and blood vessel injury
  • Bleeding
  • Unequal leg length

Getting your surgery done by a trained and experienced medical team can help prevent complications and risks.

When can you return to your normal activities after hip replacement surgery?

The time it takes to return to work and normal activities after hip replacement surgery depends on each patient’s condition, general health, and the type of work they do. Typically, patients can return to work within four to 12 weeks after the surgery. However, returning fully to your normal activities may be a gradual process.

Are there limitations after hip replacement surgery?

Hip replacement surgery helps patients get back their range of motion, but certain activities are not recommended on artificial joints. This is because the artificial joints can still wear down over time, and certain high-impact activities like running and jumping can speed up the process. Therefore, most surgeons advise against them, instead recommending lower-impact activities like walking, swimming, biking, dancing, and hiking.

Hip Replacement Surgery at Richmond University Medical Center

Richmond University Medical Center provides patients on Staten Island, NY with medical services in a wide range of specialties. The orthopedic unit is staffed with dedicated, board-certified orthopedic surgeons and other doctors who provide patients with the latest innovations in orthopedic surgery and other more conservative treatments. Richmond University Medical Center surgeons are trained in many subspecialties, including:

  • Arthroscopic surgery
  • Joint replacement surgery
  • Sports injuries
  • Spine injuries

Our medical team works to create personalized treatment plans for all our patients. Interested patients can read through our Orthopedics and Sports Medicine Brochure to learn more about orthopedic surgery at Richmond University Medical Center.

Schedule an Appointment With an Orthopedic Specialist Today

People struggling with debilitating hip pain can benefit from hip replacement surgery to get back to living life in less pain. Richmond University Medical Center provides patients on Staten Island, NY, with comprehensive medical services like hip replacement surgery. Make an appointment today with an orthopedic specialist or contact us to learn more about hip replacement surgery.