Orthopaedics: The Charles J August Joint Replacement Center

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Joint Replacement Basics

THE BASICS OF HIP REPLACEMENT SURGERY


What is Hip Replacement?
Who Should Have a Hip Replacement?
Is there an Alternative to Hip Replacement Surgery?
How Long is the Hospital Stay?
How Long is Recuperation?
Will I Need a Blood Transfusion?
What is the Success Rate?
Are There Complications?
What About Pain?


What is Hip Replacement?
In a total hip replacement operation, the surgeon replaces the worn surfaces of the hip joint with an artificial hip joint. The worn head of the femur (thigh bone) is replaced with a metal or ceramic ball mounted on a stem; the stem is placed firmly into the canal of the thigh bone at its upper end. The acetabulum (hip socket) is prepared and implanted with a metal cup and plastic or ceramic insert. The ball and insert glide together to replicate the hip joint.

Who Should Have a Hip Replacement?
Total hip replacement is often reserved for patients who:
Have a painful, disabling joint disease of the hip resulting from a severe form of arthritis
Are not likely to achieve satisfactory results from less invasive procedures, such as arthrodesis (artificial stiffening or fixation of the joint)
Have bone stock that is of poor quality or inadequate for other reconstructive techniques

Is there an Alternative to Hip Replacement Surgery?
Hip replacement is only recommended after careful diagnosis of your joint problem. It is not likely that anti-inflammatory drugs or cortisone injections will give you the same long-term relief that hip replacement will.

How Long is the Hospital Stay?
The majority of patients go home within 2-3 days. A small percentage of patients need to go to a rehab center in a nursing home after their hospital stay. This will depend on how you progress in the hospital, and keep in mind that healing and recovery times vary with each person.

How Long is Recuperation?
Recovery varies with each person. You will use a walker for approximately 4 weeks after the operation. You can drive a car in 2-4 weeks. Most people gradually increase their activities and may play golf, doubles tennis, shuffleboard, or bowl in 12 weeks. More active sports, such as singles tennis and jogging are not recommended.

Will I Need a Blood Transfusion?
The need for blood transfusions after hip replacement surgery depends greatly on very individualized factors. The majority of hip replacement patients do not require a transfusion after surgery.

What is the Success Rate?
Hip replacement surgery is recognized as a miracle of modern surgery. Most orthopaedic experts consider hip replacement to be the best method of handling arthritis in the hip. Hip replacements have literally put hundreds of thousands of Americans back on their feet and allowed them to enjoy their golden years.

Are There Complications?
As with any surgery, there is a risk of complications after hip replacement surgery. However, they are quite rare. Driving on an Interstate highway is probably more dangerous. To reduce the risk of infection, we take special precautionary measures in the operating room, and use powerful antibiotics. Our personnel are limited to fully trained and experienced nurses and technicians.

What About Pain?
Thanks to advances in medication technology, we are able to keep you very comfortable after surgery. After surgery, any temporary discomfort does not compare to the pain of arthritis endured by most people in months and years before surgery.

And because hip replacement patients are not "sick," you will not be treated as such. You will wear casual clothing after surgery, not hospital gowns.
Our team earned The Joint commission's Gold Seal of Approval.
Unity Health The Charles J August Joint Replacement Center
1555 Long Pond Road   |   Rochester, NY 14626
(585) 368-4545