Hip pain keeping you from enjoying the activities you love here in East Tennessee? The orthopedic hip specialists at Tennessee Orthopaedic Clinics are here to help you finally find relief. If osteoarthritis, osteonecrosis, rheumatoid arthritis, or a damaged hip joint is causing your pain and range of motion issues, you may be a good candidate for a total hip replacement.
In a total hip replacement, parts of the damaged hip joint are removed and replaced with prosthetic parts. This includes replacing parts of the socket and the upper leg bone (femur).
Usually, the femoral head, which is the rounded end of the femur that sits in the hip socket, is removed and replaced with a metal stem that fits into the remaining femur. At the end of the metal stem is a metal or ceramic ball that replaces the femoral head in the joint. Damaged cartilage on the surface of the socket is removed and replaced with a metal socket. A spacer made from metal, plastic, or ceramic is placed between the new ball and socket to ensure smooth movement between the two.
If your hip pain is caused by deteriorating or damaged hip joint, and it has not responded well to other less invasive treatments like medications, physical therapy, and walking supports, your orthopedic hip specialist may recommend a total hip replacement.
Traditionally, total hip replacement surgery was always done with a posterior approach, meaning that the surgeon goes in through the back of the hip to replace the joint. In the last decade or so, anterior total hip replacement surgery has gained popularity because it offers some benefits. Anterior hip replacement patients tend to report a shorter recovery time and less pain during the healing process compared to posterior hip replacement.
After surgery, you’ll likely spend a few days in the hospital to rest and relax. Pain medicine will help you feel comfortable for the first few days after your procedure.
The day after your surgery, you’ll start to work with a physical therapist who will get you up and moving with your brand new hip. Moving around is a critical part of the hip replacement recovery process. You’ll start out walking with a walker or crutches and gradually progress to walking on your own. You should be able to leave the hospital in about 3 days, give or take, and depending on how well you are recovering from surgery.
At home, you will need to have help to get through the next several weeks of your recovery process. You won’t be able to drive for three to six weeks, so make sure you have someone who can drive you to follow-up appointments, run errands, etc. You will continue to do the exercises your physical therapist taught you as well as light walking to build strength in your new joint.
By the time you hit the 10-week mark, you should be feeling back to normal and be able to fully enjoy all the pain-free freedom your new hip provides you!
Tennessee Orthopaedic Clinics’ team of orthopedic hip specialists is here to help you find the right treatments to feel better, move with less pain, and enjoy all that East Tennessee has to offer. Schedule your appointment today.