Total Hip Replacement

Dr. Heekin will remove both the damaged acetabulum and femoral head, and then position new metal, plastic or ceramic joint surfaces to restore the function of your hip.

Dr. Heekin decides what typed type of components will be used in your hip replacement based on many factors such as the performance of the implant, and your age and lifestyle.

In total hip replacement, both the head of the femur and the socket are replaced with an artificial device.

Who Should Have Hip Replacement Surgery?

People with hip joint damage that causes pain and interferes with daily activities despite treatment may be candidates for hip replacement surgery. Osteoarthritis is the most common cause of this type of damage. However, other conditions may lead to breakdown of the hip joint and the need for hip replacement surgery.

Today, a person’s overall health and activity level are more important than age in predicting a hip replacement’s success. Recent studies also suggest that people who elect to have surgery before advanced joint deterioration occurs tend to recover more easily and have better outcomes.

Hip replacement may be problematic for people with some health problems, regardless of their age. For example, people who have chronic disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, or conditions that result in severe muscle weakness, are more likely than people without chronic diseases to damage or dislocate an artificial hip. People who are at high risk for infections or in poor health are less likely to recover successfully. Therefore they may not be good candidates for this surgery.

Complications

Although complications are possible with any surgery, Dr. Heekin will take steps to minimize the risks. The most common complications of surgery include:

  • Infection
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Hip dislocation
  • Limb length inequality
  • Damage to blood vessels or arteries

Dr. Heekin will discuss possible complications with you before your surgery.

Recovery

After any type of surgery for osteoarthritis of the hip, there is a period of recovery. Recovery time and rehabilitation depend on the type of surgery performed. In the case of total hip replacements, recovery can be expected between 6 and 12 weeks, although every recovery is different..

You won’t waste any time however!  You will begin your physical therapy the very same day as surgery. You will continue physical therapy every day after that until discharge as part of the hospital’s Joint Camp program.

After being discharged, you will continue to recover at home. Dr. Heekin will recommend physical therapy, either outpatient or in your home, to help you regain strength in your hip and to restore range of motion.

After your procedure, you will still need some moderate assistance from loved ones or neighbors. It will be help to make a list of who your caregivers will be during this time. You may need to use a cane, crutches or a walker for a period of after your surgery. If so, some patients find it helpful to wear an apron for carrying things around the house. This leaves hands and arms free for balance or to use crutches.

Outcome

Hip replacement is an extremely successful surgery. In almost all cases, the surgery relieves the pain of osteoarthritis and makes it possible to return to a more active lifestyle and perform daily activities more easily