Three Questions To Answer Before Going For Hip Replacement Surgery

Posted on: 18 February 2015

If your hip joint is painful, stiff, and cannot accommodate your normal movements such as climbing stairs, then you may be a good candidate for hip replacement surgery. It involves removing your affected joint and replacing it with an artificial one (usually metal and plastic). Here are three things to do before going for the surgery:

Consider All the Alternatives

Hip replacement isn't the only option for dealing with pain in this joint. Most likely, your surgeon will have discussed with you other options for dealing with your particular problem. However, the main question is whether you have given these alternatives much thought.

Remember that although hip replacement is effective and reasonably safe, all surgical procedures carry inherent risks. Moreover, the recovery process usually runs over several months. Viable alternatives include pain medications if the pain is mild, anti-inflammatory injections to quell the swelling or even the use of supportive walking aids.

Even when it comes to surgery, hip replacement isn't the only option. There are other procedures that seek to preserve your natural joint. For example, acetabular augmentation is a grafting procedure that boosts the bio-mechanics of the problematic hip. It has a fairly large success rate.

Be Ready for the Expected Changes

As hinted above, recovery from a hip replacement surgery doesn't happen overnight. In fact, the success of the procedure isn't just about the surgeon, but also about your behavior during recovery. Your medical team will tell you exactly what to do to avoid complications; it is important that you follow them to the letter.

Some of the general guidelines include:

  • Not smoking
  • Eating healthy meals
  • Engaging in approved physical therapy
  • Limiting hip joint use (for example, you may be told to avoid bending, crossing your legs or lying on your sides.)

Get Help

Lastly, you won't be able to perform most of your house chores while still recovering. In the beginning, even simple things such as dressing, bathing or cooking may be difficult, and doing them on your own may complicate your health. Therefore, if you don't have a helper already, move fast and get one.

If you follow your doctors' advice well, then you have little to worry about as far as your surgery is concerned. The success rate for hip replacement surgery is over 90% after ten years. You may have to modify your lifestyle, but it will be better than living with the original problematic hip. Speak with specialists like Sturdy Memorial Hospital for more information.