Like all other major surgeries, hip replacement surgery is suggested, when the patient is unable to take the pain in the hip area and therefore recommended to go for a surgery. The mental make-up of any patient during a surgery has to be strong along with the basic parameters of health doing well. A surgery is often recommended when it is seen to be the most effective option to decrease the pain and get the patient to lead a normal healthy life.
What is the Process Involved in a Hip Replacement Surgery?
The normal hip joint is a ball and socket joint and the hip replacement surgery involves replacing of the diseased ball and socket joint with an artificial metallic ball with the stem inserted into the femur bone with an artificial plastic cup socket. The metallic artificial ball and stem are referred to as the “prosthesis”.
This process requires a surgical procedure for the orthopedic surgeon to make the replacement from the original joint with a prosthetic one that delivers almost the same functions like the original. Once the artificial ball and the plastic cup socket are inserted in the hip joint area, it needs to be cemented in some cases.
In some cases joints are cemented for the attachment of the artificial joint to the bone which does the work of glue. There are also some joints which are not cemented. They instead use a porous coating that is designed to allow the bone to adhere to the artificial agent. As time passes by, new bone grows and gradually fills up the porous coatings, thereby attaching the joint to the bone.
How is Hip Replacement Surgeries Useful?
Hip replacement surgeries help in relieving the pain to the patient. Patients suffering from arthritis are usually prone and more likely susceptible to the pain in the hip joints and need the surgery when the pain becomes unbearable. Usually, people above the age of 60 or older are faced with this problem. In some cases, it may be for younger people as well, but the replaced artificial joints have a certain life span and may need to be replaced again after a stipulated period of time.
Hip pain surgery can help you resume to your normal activities which was being hindered due to the pain, like bathing, preparing meals, doing household chores, and walking.
If you have been using a cane or a walker for your walking, a hip replacement surgery can help you resume to a normal walking lifestyle.
A lot of people complain of sleeping disturbances due to the pain in the hip joint, a hip replacement surgery, can give you back, a peaceful sleep in the night.
Risk Involved in the Surgery and After Care
- Anesthetic risks (common to all surgery)
- Likelihood of infection which can be both of the wound and the artificial hip joint itself
- Dislocation of the artificial hip joint which though is very unlikely but the risk is always there
- During any kind of surgery the development of blood clots is a possibility
- A change in the length of the leg that has been operated upon
- Damage to the nerves and the blood vessels surrounding the hip joint
After Care or Recovery:
- Till the soft tissues around the new hip joint are healed, special care needs to be taken for the movements around the hip joint area. One has to remember that it is not the natural hip so a hip prosthesis has a limited range of movement.
- The first six weeks after surgery is a very high risk time for dislocation of the new hip.
- The guidelines prescribed by the doctor on the physical movement of the operated patient should be duly followed.
- Some of these guidelines include; do not cross the legs, do not bend down low, avoid lifting heavy objects, avoid forceful or jarring movement of the hip.
- Avoid lying on the operated side, do not stand for long periods, sit on a firm chair with support to your arms, and treat scratches and cuts promptly to decrease chances of infection affecting the new joint.
Surgeries are a crucial time of a patient’s life and if dealt with patience and the right doctor accompanied by the right treatment with a positive frame of mind , it gives out a successful result.