Minimally Invasive and Advanced Hip Replacement Procedures
The anterior approach is the new alternative to traditional hip replacement
surgery where the surgeon approaches the hip joint from the front instead
of side or back. In a traditional hip replacement surgery, the surgeon
makes an incision along the side of your leg to access the hip joint.
When approaching from the front, the surgeon can access your joint without
cutting muscles. By sparing major muscles, the anterior approach results
in faster recovery and less pain. Many patients who underwent surgery
using the anterior approach were back to normal activities within few
weeks. An assessment and evaluation by an orthopedic surgeon is needed
to determine if you are a candidate for the surgery using the anterior
approach or whether a more traditional approach is necessary.
Mini Total Hip Replacement
Less invasive techniques have been used to perform hip replacement through
smaller incisions and less muscle trauma. This has resulted in faster
recovery, less pain, and quicker return to full activity.
In this procedure, the surgeon removes the damaged cartilage and bone
and replaces them with new prosthetic parts to restore the motion and
function of the hip. The new construction consists of two basic parts:
the ball and the socket. Regardless of whether a patient has traditional
or minimally invasive hip replacement surgery, the new, artificial materials
used are the same. Your surgeon will choose the type of prosthesis that
best fits your needs.
The surgeon starts by removing the femur (thigh bone) from the hip socket
along with the femoral head (ball). After damaged portions are removed,
a metal shell implant is pressed into the hip socket. In some cases, surgical
cement may be used to secure the remaining bone to the implant. A polyethylene
(plastic), ceramic or metal liner is then attached to the metal shell,
completing the replacement of the socket. Finally, the femoral implant
is placed into the area where the femur was removed, followed by the replacement
of the femoral head. The ball and socket are then joined to form the new
Total Hip Resurfacing
Approved by the FDA in 2006, hip resurfacing is a less invasive approach
to hip replacement. Similar to complete replacement, the procedure replaces
damaged portions of the hip with implants. The femur is also separated
from the socket and the damaged portions are taken out. However, unlike
hip replacement, the ball is then reshaped to fit the implant as opposed
to removing it completely. Before the reshaped ball is pressed in, a metal
shell is inserted into the socket. The metal ball is then attached to
the reshaped femur.
The advantage of hip resurfacing is that it recreates a more natural hip
and preserves more bone than traditional hip replacement. Therefore, it
decreases the risk of dislocation, allowing patients to return to high
impact activity such as running and playing basketball. The surgery is
intended for younger patients with more active lifestyles – typically
males under 65 and females under 55. It is not recommended for patients
with low bone density levels.
In a hip arthroscopy, the surgeon diagnoses and treats a damaged hip joint
with the help of an instrument called an arthroscope. Inserted through
a small incision, the arthroscope uses fiber optics to light the area
being examined, while a video camera attached to it transmits the image
to a video monitor. Saline is pushed through the joint to clear out fluid
obstructing the view, allowing the surgeon to thoroughly examine the area.
The arthroscope also enables the surgeon to remove inflammation and loose
fragments, treat frayed cartilage, and remove bumps of bone that may be
To read about patients who have had hip replacement procedures, please