A hip replacement is a common type of surgery where a damaged hip joint is replaced with an artificial one. This can totally transform quality of life and offers relief from a very painful joint as well as improved mobility. Adults of any age can be considered for this surgery however it is most common […]
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What happens before total hip replacement surgery?
It is important to keep yourself fit and healthy in the lead up to an operation. Try and maintain a healthy weight to avoid complications after surgery. Mr Punwar and his team are always on hand to advise and you will be provided with information about what to expect when you come into hospital and how to best prepare yourself for the surgery.
By staying active with gentle exercise, such as swimming or walking, and strengthening the muscles around your hip, will help your recovery. Also, make sure that you stop smoking several weeks before the operation. This will all go a long way to improve your recovery afterwards.
Are there any alternatives to total hip replacement surgery?
There will always be a discussion around all the options available, and these will depend largely on a patient’s individual needs, the risks and the benefits. Regular to moderate exercise can help reduce stiffness in your hip, and losing weight can reduce the load on your hip.
Painkillers and anti-inflammatory painkillers can help to control the pain, but you should check with your GP first and this can be less effective if your arthritis gets worse. Steroid injections into your hip joint can reduce pain and stiffness for several months, but there are risks if you have injections too often.
Physical therapies, medications, steroid joint injections and lifestyle changes can all be beneficial for treating cartilage damage, with total hip joint replacement surgery being your last resort.
Are there any risks of total hip replacement surgery?
Any surgical procedure carries some risk, and it normally depends on your age and how fit you are. Your surgeon will discuss with you the risks that relate specifically to you in your consultation before surgery.
There is a risk of developing blood clots post-surgery, but to prevent this you are likely to be prescribed anticoagulation medication in either injection or tablet formulations. You will also be provided with anti-embolism stockings to wear which are also designed to help reduce the risk of blood clots.
There is a very small (less than 1%) chance that the ball joint can dislocate from the socket. However, this is most likely within the first 6 weeks when the tissues around the hip are still healing. To avoid this, Mr Punwar will provide you with some general hip precautions.
Your surgical wound will need to be kept clean and dry with the dressing changed regularly in order to reduce the chances of any external infection occurring.
What follow-up care is provided?
After the procedure, Mr Punwar and his team will keep a close eye on you whilst you recover in hospital for a few days. Mr Punwar will check on you to ensure that you are regaining mobility and have a satisfactory post-operative x-ray.
Following surgery it is common to experience ankle swelling and some bruising around the operation site, which can take several months to resolve.
During the first four-6 weeks following surgery, some general hip precautions may be advised in order to protect the hip whilst the muscles are healing eg: sleeping on your back. You will be provided with a comprehensive aftercare programme and have regular check-ups with Mr Punwar to make sure that you are recovering well.
It is generally recommended that you refrain from driving until 4-6 weeks post-surgery as you will need to ensure that you are able to perform an emergency stop and put your foot down on the brake and clutch safely.
Most individuals recover and return to their normal activities after six weeks. Initially, as you increase your activity the hip can be sore, but with appropriate medication and gentle exercise, you should make a good recovery.
Between six and twelve weeks after surgery, a check-up x-ray would be recommended. There would also be a review at six-months and at nine-months post-surgery.
How long does a hip replacement last?
Total hip replacement is one of the most common and effective forms of surgery, usually with excellent outcomes. However, it is important to look after your hip replacement by following all the aftercare advice. This includes any physiotherapy exercises for strengthening your hip muscles and maintaining a healthy weight. Mr Punwar only uses the best quality hip replacements with a 10A* rating; this means that 95% of these types of implant are still working 10 years after surgery.