Anterior Hip Replacement
Anterior hip replacements involve approaching the hip from the front as opposed to the back. And what initially got me very interested in it was that we go between the plain of muscles and nerves in the hip as opposed to through muscles. That has tremendous implications as it relates to not violating some of the muscles that stabilize the hip, and can mean a faster, easier, more pain-free recovery in the beginning of your recovering stages.
We involve X-rays throughout our procedure so there are no surprises, and because the use of intra-operative X-rays allows us to confirm our component positioning of the hip replacement before we leave the operating room. Very soon, we’ll be able to bring robotic-assisted techniques to anterior hip replacements – we’re already doing it for partial and total knee replacements with tremendous success.
There are a lot of ways we can measure success after orthopedic surgery. We can measure angles of how much people are bending or how quickly they get off canes and walkers, but I think the best measure for me is the stories I get from my patients. Whether it was getting that championship racquetball player back to championship form, or getting that mom back to taking care of her kids and being able to run around with them during soccer practices, that to me ultimately is the best measure of success.
The most important part of picking your hip surgeon is picking a surgeon that is comfortable with the approach they use the most. And that ultimately winds up being the biggest determining factor of your success. At the end of the day, I do believe – and I tell all my patients this – that at six weeks following a hip surgery, a well-done hip replacement is a well-done hip replacement no matter how you did it.
I find hip replacement surgery to be one of the most rewarding aspects of my career, and that’s because I get to get patients back to their passions, whatever that may mean. And certainly, with advances in techniques including anterior hip replacements and improved post-operative recovery pathways, I look forward to bringing you back to whatever it is you want to do in this game of life.