If your hip joint is damaged—either due to injury or a chronic condition like osteoarthritis—you can experience chronic pain, stiffness, poor balance, and immobility. Fortunately, a hip replacement can help correct these issues by removing the problematic joint and putting an artificial device in its place. While this surgical procedure offers many benefits, it does take time to prepare for and recover from. If you suffer from hip pain and are curious about this procedure, here is a brief guide on the hip replacement process.
Steps of Hip Replacement
If you’re a candidate for joint replacement, your orthopedic surgeon will review your medical history, current health, and hip movement to ensure you’re ready for surgery. Before the procedure, consult with a physical therapist to outline your recovery process and learn how to use support devices like crutches. Also, prepare your home for temporary mobility challenges; for example, move essential items downstairs to eliminate the need to climb stairs.
Hip replacement surgery can take anywhere from an hour to 90 minutes to complete. Before surgery, your provider will administer general anesthesia so that you drift into a deep sleep and cannot feel pain.
Although each procedure may vary, depending on the individual needs of the patient, all hip replacements typically follow the same steps. After damaged bone and cartilage are surgically removed, the impaired socket is replaced with a prosthetic socket. Similarly, the top of the femur bone is replaced with a rounded prosthetic that comfortably fits within the new socket.
After a few hours of observation after the surgery, you should move around, take blood-thinning medications, and wear compression garments to minimize the risk of blood clots in the legs. As soon as you can, begin physical therapy. Although minor movements may be difficult at first, they will help speed up recovery and reduce pain.
As you progress through therapy, you will soon begin to use a supportive device like a cane. Eventually, you should be able to walk without assistance. While the complete healing timeline can last anywhere from six to 12 months, most can resume normal activities within six weeks.
Hip pain and low mobility don’t always mean you need a surgical hip replacement. When you’re a client of OsteoStrong O’Fallon in St. Charles County, MO, you’ll have access to advanced solutions that will improve your joint and bone strength. Under the care of trained specialists, you’ll utilize a series of robotic tools that safely exert pressure on tissues to stimulate their natural healing ability and boost musculoskeletal strength. With routine treatment, OsteoStrong can improve pain, increase flexibility, and possibly eliminate the need for surgery. Visit this facility online to learn more about their services, or call (636) 238-8696 to schedule your first session for free.