Having hip pain is no longer a condition that confines you to your bed. These days, with the advancements in technology and medicine, you don’t have to live with arthritis in your hip and pain and discomfort. Hip replacement surgery is a much more common procedure than people think. It is a straightforward procedure where a surgeon removes the damaged part of the hip and then replaces it with an artificial joint.
Hearing the words hip replacement surgery can be scary, especially as an older person. So much of our daily movements are dependent on our hips. But the surgery is not the end of the world and can help you regain function and stop hip pain. In most cases, the benefits of undergoing the surgery vastly seem to outweigh the negatives.
Reasons to Require a Hip Replacement
Certain things can happen that will make getting hip replacement surgery necessary. You may need to have your hip replaced, either due to old age, chronic illness, or an injury that didn’t heal correctly.
Some other reasons include:
- Arthritis: Arthritis in the hip can be minor, or it can be crippling. If you feel pain in your butt, upper leg, or groin, arthritis may be the culprit. Whether you will need hip replacement surgery depends on how much of the hip is affected.
- Hip Fracture: A hip fracture can happen for a variety of reasons. Whether from a fall or an injury, you will feel this pain in your back or upper thigh. Sometimes the fracture or break doesn’t heal correctly, which could also lead to hip replacement surgery.
- Wear and Tear: Our movements rely heavily on our hips, which can cause wear and tear to happen. The hip bones rubbing against each other can cause them to become worn down over time. Once they replace the joint, the pain should go away, restoring function.
Types of Hip Replacements
There are three types of hip replacements, and the one your surgeon recommends depends on the state of your hip bone and the joint.
- Total Hip Replacement - A total hip replacement or total hip arthroplasty is the most common hip replacement procedure. Artificial implants replace deteriorated or damaged parts of the hip.
- Partial Hip Replacement - A partial hip replacement, or hemiarthroplasty, is where the surgeon replaces part of the hip. Doctors usually recommend this procedure to older patients that have had a hip fracture.
- Hip Resurfacing - With this procedure is a surface replacement. The goal is to keep as much of your natural bone as possible. Younger patients are usually the recipients of this procedure.
Your recovery process largely depends on you and how the surgery goes. The recovery process begins 24 hours after surgery. During this time, your doctors will make sure that everything is okay and there are no complications. They will also figure out the best ways to manage your pain. Any pain you may feel should dissipate after a couple of days. The pain will turn into discomfort, and then that too will fade. Most patients find themselves walking with the help of a cane or walker one to two days after surgery.
Your incision will be closed with either staples or sutures. You will need to go back to the doctor two to four weeks after surgery to have them removed and to have your recovery assessed. During your recovery, don’t rush your body and listen to your doctor. They will tell you when it is okay to move around and how much. Your mind knows that it now has an artificial joint, and it will take time to get used to it.
With the advancements in technology and medicine, hip pain isn’t something you have to live with anymore. Hip replacement surgery is a common procedure that can help restore your body’s movement so you can get back to being active.