Arthritis of the Hip & Total Hip Replacement
The Hip Joint
Is one of the most important joints in the human body. It allows us to walk, run, and jump. It bears our body’s weight and the force of the strong muscles of the hip and leg. Yet the hip joint is also one of our most flexible joints and allows a greater range of motion than all other joints in the body except for the shoulder.
The hip joint is a ball-and-socket synovial joint formed between the oscoxa (hip bone) and the femur. A round, cup-shaped structure on the os coax, known as the acetabulum, forms the socket for the hip joint. The rounded head of the femur forms the ball of the joint.
Arthritis of the Hip
Arthritis is wearing of this smooth cartilage. It causes pain, swelling and stiffness in joints.
Types of Arthritis
This is perhaps the common type of Arthritis where cartilage simply wears out due to over use or old age, causing stiffness, pain or loss of joint movement.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis:
This is an auto-immune disease where body's immune system which is designed to fight infections and help in healing wounds, attacks its own tissues, especially joints. Usually young adults develop this type of joint involvement and feel the pain. The joints, usually fingers, swell and become painful.
- Traumatic Arthritis: Injuries to the joints damage the lining of cartilage. The cartilage develops cracks, which do not heal. This becomes a weak spot, which gradually wears and lead to arthritis years after the injury. This can often be seen in sports personalities like football and cricketers.
Treatment for Arthritis
There is no permanent medical cure for arthritis, but there are multiple options available that may relieve the pain. For non-surgical treatment, the doctor may recommend options like lifestyle modification, physiotherapy, assistive devices and losing weight. This could be helpful in the initial stages.
NOTE: Excessive intake of pain killers can damage your kidney and other organs. Pain killers are not a solution.
Benefits of Replacement:
• Permanent reliefs from pain, giving you back the ability to move without pain, which other options don’t provide.
• Increased movement mobility and stability
• Reduced joint pain
• Correction of deformity
• Increased leg strength
• Improved quality of life due to the ability to return to normal activities and pastimes
What is the right time for Surgery?
If you have tried all other options and still suffering. Then the sooner you go in for surgery the more favorable the outcome. It is time to be cured and say no to the pain.
Pain Post surgery
Mostly, people have this fear that they will experience great pain after the surgery. At our center pain management is our top priority. We have a dedicated team for pain management, who use sophisticated methods like spinal epidural catheters, patient controlled anesthesia, transdermal patches to keep you virtually pain free in post-operative period.
What is the recovery time?
Each patient has its own pace for healing. We usually make the patient walk after24 hours with help of support. Mostly, one is restricted to use walker for approximately 2-4 weeks. Full recovery from a hip joint replacement takes about three to six months.
How long does the replacement last?
The usual life span of a successful Total Hip Replacement is about 15-20 years. It may however vary under individual circumstances. A revision joint replacement is in that case.
Dr. Aashish Chaudhry
Senior Consultant & MD
Orthopaedics, Joint Replacement & Spine Surgery