Total Hip Replacement can be a life-changing option for patients suffering with the pain and disability associated with end-stage osteoarthritis. By the year 2030, over 500,000 hip replacements are expected to be performed annually. Many patients experience anxiety about the idea of having a hip replacement. Fortunately, the rates of complications are very low and the rates of successful outcomes are very high.
To make the most of total hip replacement, patients should thinks about these four things before the operation ever occurs.
- Choose the right surgeon. It is important that you choose a surgeon you trust, and who has regular experience in hip replacement surgery. It might be advisable to look for the best concierge doctors who perform such complicated surgeries frequently. It has been shown that surgeons who frequently perform hip replacements have better outcome scores, lower complication rates, and more consistent results than surgeons who perform fewer hip replacements. Furthermore, some surgeons have additional training specific to hip replacements through a fellowship. When looking for a surgeon, patients should do research and talk to people they trust, such as their primary care physician.
- Do not get hung up on surgical approach and implant choice. There are multiple approaches to perform a total hip replacement – posterior, direct anterior, anterolateral, and direct lateral – and they are chosen based on particular conditions of the patient or the experience and specialty of the physician. Each offers theoretical advantages; however, there is a lack of data that conclusively supports one approach over the rest. In the hands of an experienced surgeon, any of the surgical approach options can yield an excellent outcome. Likewise, there are many different implant options available in hip replacements and there is not one single implant choice that has proven itself superior to the rest.
- Prepare yourself for surgery. Every patient has risk factors that can affect the outcome of surgery. Most importantly, patients should get in the best medical and physical shape possible in preparation for surgery. If you are a smoker, try to quit. If you are a diabetic, get your glucose under control. If you are overweight, try to lose the excess weight. In addition, some surgeons recommend “pre-hab” or physical therapy before hip replacements in order to strengthen the muscles and increase flexibility in preparation for postoperative rehabilitation.
- Commit to rehabilitation. Hip replacement surgery is not a destination, but rather one step forward in a long journey. Although the surgeon performs the operation, the aftermath requires hard work from the patient including several weeks of physical therapy. Some patients will spend a short stint in a rehab facility and some patients will go right home after surgery. You might want to get yourself and your family ready for the journey to total recovery. Making areas of your home easier to access should also be something to consider. Looking at something like accessible bathing solutions from Absolute Mobility might help make the post-surgery period easier to spend at home. Or if you prefer then you might consider possibly checking out some different options such as living in an assisted living facility for a short amount of time whilst you recover. You might want to go to Chelsea Senior Living
to potentially find out more about this option. You could also consider at-home carers if you did want to live in your house during rehab. Patients commonly deal with pain and general fatigue during the early stages of physical therapy, but in spite of this, a physical and mental commitment on the patient’s part is essential in maximizing results after a hip replacement surgery.
If you follow these suggestions, you will be well on your way to a successful hip replacement surgery that will likely improve your activity level and overall quality of life.
To request an appointment for a free consultation before your potential Total Hip Replacement, click here or call directly to one of our three locations during regular business hours:
Cool Springs: 615-224-9810
Spring Hill: 931-489-2022
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