Preparing for Hip Surgery
posted by Brady Barker, MD | February 7, 2017
As a big part of the body’s movement system, the hip deals with some of the most wear and tear of any area of the body. The hip is a ball-and-socket joint designed to allow movement in a wide range of directions supported by padded cartilage. Over time, however, it’s not uncommon for this protective padding to wear down and weaken the hip.
If hip conditions become serious enough, a common solution is hip replacement surgery, or total hip arthroplasty. In this surgery, a surgeon takes out sections of damaged hip joints and replaces them with man-made parts. The artificial hip joint, called prosthesis, is usually made of a combination of metal and strong plastic.
In most cases of hip pain, doctors recommended more conservative forms of treatment, including methods of strengthening and protecting the joints, before deciding on hip surgery. However, if conservative treatments don’t produce good results, surgery is often the only option to relieve pain and correct the hip problems.
There are three common conditions that can be serious enough to require hip surgery:
There may be times where more conservative forms of treatment will manage symptoms of these conditions. But if pain is extreme despite treatment methods like medications, or if it interferes with daily life, speak to your doctor about surgery.
If your doctor determines that you need hip surgery, you will need to prepare both physically and mentally.
There are a few normal procedures you’ll experience after your hip surgery is complete:
There are a few risks with surgery, though most of them are rare:
If you’re experiencing extreme hip pain, contact your doctor. They can help suggest less invasive treatments, or recommend the right procedures if you need them.
I received an undergraduate degree in molecular biology from Brigham Young University and thereafter attended the Medical College of Wisconsin. I find satisfaction in the process of putting broken people back together and relieving them of pain. Helping patients recover and enjoy life again is a gratifying experience for me in my profession. My approach to patient interaction is to consider each individual’s case, treat him or her individually and maintain open communication.
“Hip replacement.” The Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/hip-replacement-surgery/basics/definition/prc-20019151
“How to Prepare for Hip Replacement Surgery.” WebMD. http://www.webmd.com/osteoarthritis/prepare-hip-replacement#1
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. You should always consult your doctor before making decisions about your health.