Hip Replacement: Do You Need Hip Surgery?
Do You Need Hip Replacement Surgery?
Hip replacement surgeries have become quite common in the U.S. Over 300,000 patients are undergoing complete hip replacement surgeries each year. Although 90% of patients seem to feel better and are able to get back to their normal activities in weeks or months after their surgery, surgery is not the solution for everyone.
So, how can you tell if you need hip surgery?
Read the following article to get an insight into this subject here.
Things to Try Before Considering a Surgery
According to medical experts, surgery should not be your first choice. Most people, who have tried simple things along the way before considering a surgery, have been successful.
A recommended option to try before ending up opting for operation is to use a hip brace. A high-quality hip brace will help stabilize your hip area and quickly decrease the hip pain. It will also help reduce inflammation and restore your mobility. With a hip brace on, you can continue your day to day activities without any pain or discomfort.
For some people, the conservative, non-surgical treatments like physical therapy, ambulatory aids (like walkers and crutches), and rest could help. Another option that is worth-trying is anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen and naproxen. For some other people, cortisone shots can be more effective.
Signs You Don’t Need a Hip Surgery
So, now you know the options to try out before considering a surgery.
How can you say that you don’t need a hip surgery? Let’s find out here:
In general, hip replacement surgeries are less of an imperative in the following circumstances:
- The hip pain slows you down but doesn’t actually stop you from doing your normal activities.
- You are getting relief from less invasive treatment options that are mentioned above.
- You haven’t tried the non-surgical treatments that are described above yet.
- You are able to do things, such as swimming and walking, although you are not able to do strenuous activities like running, bowling, etc.
If you meet any of these criterias, you may not need a hip surgery. Rather, you can try one of the above-mentioned non-surgical treatments.
In the case of arthritic hip pain, the decision to go for a surgery or not shouldn’t be made based on the occasional flare-ups. Although the pain can be severe, a joint replacement surgery should be considered only in the cases of persistent pain that may lead to disability and fail to respond to non-invasive treatments.
Think twice Before Hip Replacement Surgery
Apart from the above-mentioned cases where you don’t need a surgery, there are some other situations where a hip surgery may not be the right choice.
You will have to get your recent infections taken care of prior to the surgery. Examples include infections in your gum and teeth. It’s imperative that you reduce the chance of an infection in the new joint, which is considered to be a serious issue that could lead to more surgery.
Also, you may likely have trouble later on if you have a history of:
- Heart or lung diseases
- Blood clots
In such cases, your doctor will have to get your other health problems under control before surgery. You may also be advised to decrease your bodyweight and quit smoking.
Also, you should not opt for a surgery if you are not sure your hip is causing the trouble. Perhaps, hip pain can actually be due to back pain or knee problems.
So, when can you tell you need a hip replacement surgery? See below:
Signs You Need a Hip Surgery
As a golden rule of thumb, you will need a hip replacement surgery when your hip problem is greatly affecting your quality of life and limiting your ability to carry out your everyday activities that are normally done by the other people in your age group.
Well, we know that this is quite a broad description and you will need some subjective criteria to come to a decision. Practically speaking, you will need a hip surgery if you experience the following:
- Your hip pain keeps you awake or awakens you at nights.
- Your hip pain reduces your ability to rise up from a chair, climb up the stairs, or get into your car.
- Your hip pain makes it less likely to engage in simple activities, such as walking and swimming.
- You have tried non-invasive, non-surgical treatments for several months and still, you are experiencing a persistent pain.
- You have osteoarthritis, which makes you feel that it is wearing you down in several ways.
- You have advanced arthritis.
- You have significant joint damage.
- You have swelling and stiffness in your hip joints.
- You can’t work.
- You can’t have a normal social life.
- You feel the pain during rainy days.
- You have morning stiffness that lasts less than half an hour.
- You have a history of an injury to your hip.
- You experience a “grating” of your joints.
Besides all these, you can go for a hip replacement surgery if you are well enough to cope with a surgery and the rehabilitation that follows.
In this line, you and your physician will have to evaluate how well you can withstand the surgery by taking the following factors into consideration:
- Bone density
- Overall health
What Should You Do if Surgery is Indicated?
So, you have come to the stage where you are ready for a hip replacement. What should you do next?
Sit with your doctor to create the plan of action, which includes the complete disclosure of what the operation and post-operative care entail. As such, the topics of discussion should include the following areas:
- Hip replacement implants
- Understanding the procedures
- Risks of infections, nerve injuries, and blood clots
- Risks of anesthesia complications
- Post-operative recovery and rehabilitation
- Physical therapy
- Home healthcare assistance
Working out a plan of action in advance can help you significantly when it comes to a smoother recovery and peace of mind.