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Posterior Approach Total Hip Replacement

Posterior Approach Total Hip Replacement

If you are experiencing pain in your hip that is persistent and severe, it may be time to consult a physician and discuss what options are available to minimize your pain. If your mobility is compromised, and over-the-counter medications and physical therapy have proven unsuccessful treatments, it’s important to determine to root of the problem which could stem from arthritis, sciatica, nerve damage and so forth.

Once determined, your doctor may suggest surgery. Hip replacement surgery is very common, especially in older adults. As we age, our joints and the connective tissue deteriorate over time, causing inflammation. Once the doctor has diagnosed the issue, then the proper corrective action can be taken.

There are several types of hip replacement surgery, but the traditional posterior approach currently is the most common. This method is performed when an orthopedic surgeon makes an incision close to the buttocks to access the hip joint, bypassing primary leg muscles used for walking. The implant is inserted into the joint without the use of bone cement because the thigh bone will grow into it on its own, resulting in a secure and reliable fit. Hip replacements can last 20-plus years because of advances in technology and are performed on roughly 200,000 people each year. 

The traditional posterior approach has a strong record of success and a low complication rate. However, after surgery, your doctor may suggest certain “post-posterior precautions” which will prevent potential complications, such as dislocation, associated with the posterior approach. Recovery time after surgery depends upon the person and varies widely depending on age, activity level, weight and so forth, but with the posterior approach, recovery time can be lengthy and intensive.

At first, the patient will leave the hospital with a walking aid such as a walker, crutches or a wheelchair. Isometric exercises are also recommended for the first four to six weeks following surgery to help increase circulation to the legs and muscle restoration. Once the patient is able to negotiate crutches and move with limited mobility, physical therapy may be prescribed. Only after physical therapy will the hip be able to be full weight bearing. Most activities, including sports, work and driving are limited until the hip is able to bear weight. Most people experience an extreme reduction in pain and will be able to markedly improve hip function after three months following the proper protocol prescribed by their doctor.  

All of OrthoTLC’s physicians are experienced in assessing hip discomfort and will be able to properly determine the next course of action.

Request an Appointment with an OrthoTLC Physician Today!

Surgeries are performed at Northeast Georgia Medical Center's state-of-the-art North Patient Tower and Northeast Georgia Medical Center Braselton.

For more information, or to schedule an appointment with any of our doctors, please complete our contact form or call us at (678) 207- 4500