After having a hip replacement, you may expect your lifestyle to be a lot like how it was before surgery—but without the pain. In many ways, you are right, but returning to your everyday activities will take time. Being an active participant in the healing process can help you get there sooner and ensure a more successful outcome.
Joint Replacement Types
Activities After Hip Replacement
Common Questions About Total Hip Replacement
The first step when making the decision about hip replacement is to meet with your surgeon to see if you are a candidate for total hip replacement surgery. Your surgeon will take your medical history, perform a physical examination and X-ray your hip. Even if the pain is significant, and the X-rays show advanced arthritis of the joint, the first line of treatment is nearly always non-operative. This includes weight loss if appropriate, an exercise regimen, medication, injections, or bracing. If the symptoms persist despite these measures, and with corroborating X-rays, then you may consider surgery.
Common Questions About Total Knee Replacement
The first step when making the decision about knee replacement is to meet with your surgeon to see if you are a candidate for total knee replacement surgery. Your surgeon will take your medical history, perform a physical examination, and X-ray your knee. Even if the pain is significant, and the X-rays show advanced arthritis of the joint, the first line of treatment is nearly always non-operative. This includes weight loss if appropriate, an exercise regimen, medication, injections, or bracing. If the symptoms persist despite these measures, then you could consider surgery.
Computers have been assisting surgeons in the operating room since the 1980s. Today approximately 7% of all joint replacement surgeries are completed with the aid of computer navigation technology. Similar to the GPS in your car, these devices guide surgeons to precisely position the components of a hip or knee replacement. These tools can help surgeons decide what thickness of bone to remove and how to improve limb alignment. In theory, a well-balanced and properly aligned joint replacement should, like your new car tires, last longer if in acceptable alignment. The number of joint replacements done with this technology may grow over the next decade as it continues to improve.
Full Versus Partial Knee Replacements
While it may seem appealing to have half of a surgery compared to a full surgery, it is important to understand the differences between a unicompartmental (partial) and a total knee replacement surgery. Each type of knee replacement surgery is unique and has its own outcomes after surgery.
Patients with advanced arthritis of the hip may be candidates for either traditional total hip replacement (arthroplasty) or hip resurfacing (hip resurfacing arthroplasty). Each of these procedures is a type of hip replacement, but there are important differences. Your orthopaedic surgeon will talk with you about the different procedures and which operation would be best for you.
Minimally Invasive Total Hip Replacement
Total hip replacement (also known as hip arthroplasty) is a common orthopaedic procedure and, as the population ages, it is expected to become even more common. Replacing the hip joint with an implant or "prosthesis" relieves pain and improves mobility so that you are able to resume your normal, everyday activities.
Minimally Invasive Total Knee Replacement
Total knee replacement (also called knee arthroplasty) is a common orthopaedic procedure that is used to replace the damaged or worn surfaces of the knee. Replacing these surfaces with an implant or "prosthesis" will relieve pain and increase mobility, allowing you to return to your normal, everyday activities.
Outpatient Joint Replacements
You may know someone who had hip or knee replacement surgery and went home the same day. In the past, hip and knee replacement surgery required a hospital stay lasting several nights. With advances in procedural techniques, anesthesia medications, pain management and rehabilitation, some people can now have a joint replacement surgery without spending a night in the hospital.
Partial Joint Replacements
Arthroplasty means the surgical repair of a joint. Orthopaedic surgeons performing an arthroplasty use metal and/or plastic parts to reconstruct degenerative, damaged, or arthritic joint surfaces in patients with severe arthritis who have failed nonsurgical treatment and have disabling function, limitation of activities of daily living, and severe pain.