If you are experiencing pain, tightness, or stiffness in your hip, it could mean you have osteoarthritis. It is a very common condition that affects both adult men and women. More people suffering from osteoarthritis in the hips are now getting hip replacements to address these issues.
Read more to learn why doctors recommend hip replacement surgery for osteoarthritis instead of other treatments.
What Is Osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. All of your joints have cartilage, a protective cushion between the bones that creates a low-friction environment in the joints. Osteoarthritis is the degradation of the cartilage. It can affect any joint, but it is most often seen in the hands, hips, knees, and spine.
Individuals with osteoarthritis most often experience pain and inflammation in the affected joints. Stiffness, tenderness, swelling, and scraping/cracking sensations may also be present in the affected areas.
Damage to cartilage is typically irreversible. Most people with mild to moderate symptoms address osteoarthritis with pain relievers and other conservative treatment methods. More severe cases usually need surgery. However, you can have hip replacement even if you don’t have an advanced case yet, at the recommendation of your orthopedic doctor.
What Is A Hip Replacement?
Hip replacement, or hip arthroplasty, is a surgical procedure that replaces damaged parts of the hip with an artificial implant.
The hip is a ball and socket joint connecting the thigh bone (femur) to the pelvis. Surrounding the joint are muscles, ligaments, and tendons that support its structure. The implant a patient receives will be almost the same as a natural bone, except it’s made from medical-grade plastics, metals, or ceramics.
Why Would I Need A Hip Replacement?
Your doctor may recommend a hip replacement for the following symptoms:
- Worsening pain
- Loss of strength and mobility
- Difficulty or inability to go about your daily activities
Hip replacement may be the treatment of choice for joint damage caused by arthritis, injuries, and fractures, with osteoarthritis being the most common cause. It’s best to have a hip replacement as early as possible before the disease progresses too far.
The procedure may also help individuals with osteonecrosis or the death of bone tissue.
Types Of Hip Replacement
Several factors are at play in determining the type of hip replacement you need. Surgeons may use the posterior or anterior approach to replace the diseased hip.
- Total hip replacement — Your surgeon will replace the entire joint.
- Partial hip replacement — In some cases, it’s best not to replace the entire hip. Instead, your doctor will only implant a new femur head.
- Anterior approach — Anterior hip replacement inserts the implant using minimally invasive techniques. There are fewer tissues near the entry point, so this approach decreases tissue damage and speeds up recovery.
How Can People With Osteoarthritis Benefit From The Procedure?
Hip replacement surgery relieves and addresses pain. However, osteoarthritis patients will also experience the following benefits:
- Mobility improvement
- Better coordination of the legs and torso
- Increase in range of motion
- Ability to perform daily activities, such as walking and climbing stairs, more comfortably
- Ability to maintain an active lifestyle
Hip Replacement Surgery in New England
Hip arthroplasty is a highly successful and effective treatment modality for osteoarthritis. Advancements in medical technology have created minimally-invasive methods, so you can have a hip replacement and return to enjoying your life with minimal downtime.
If you are concerned about getting a hip replacement near you, Advanced Orthopedics New England is ready to help. Our doctors are well-trained in the treatment of osteoarthritis. You can expect us to be with you every step of the way, from diagnosis to recovery.