Hip replacement is surgery to replace one or both hips with artificial joints made from plastic, ceramic, or metal components. Some people with spondylitis choose hip replacement if hip pain and dysfunction cannot be managed with medication. Hip replacement is a common type of arthroplasty - surgery to replace or repair a joint.
What does it involve?
Your doctor may order a complete physical, blood tests, or other diagnostic procedures to ensure that you are in good condition for surgery.
Once your hip replacement is scheduled, spend the weeks before surgery preparing by eating nutritious meals and staying as active as possible. Stop or cut down your smoking, and limit your consumption of alcoholic beverages to one or two per day. Being in top condition for surgery will shorten your recovery time and help prevent complications.
You will be given instructions to stop eating several hours before surgery. When you arrive at the hospital, vital signs will be taken, and blood may be drawn. Before surgery, you will receive an intravenous (IV) line. You will receive a spinal block or general anesthesia to make you sleep.
The surgeon will make an incision over the front or side of your hip. They will remove damaged and diseased bone and cartilage. The femoral head, or round top of the femur (thigh) bone, will be replaced along with the hip joint.
Depending on your condition and the surgical technique used, you may spend between one and four nights in the hospital recovering from hip replacement. The nurse or doctor will explain how to care for your wound. You may need to wear compression stockings or sleeves to help prevent blood clots. You will be encouraged to sit up and even walk soon after surgery.
You may begin physical therapy while still in the hospital and continue after you return home. It will require three to six months to rehabilitate your new joint fully. Completing your rehabilitation program is key to a successful hip replacement.
Hip replacement can reduce pain and restore function, making it possible to return to performing normal daily tasks.
Hip replacement can provide significant improvements in pain, function, and quality of life for those with severe spondylitis.
Any surgery carries risks including blood clots, blood loss, infection, breathing problems, reactions to medication, and heart attack or stroke during the surgery.
Hip replacement can be painful, and you will most likely need pain medication for some weeks during recovery.
Blood vessels or nerves may be damaged during hip replacement, resulting in weakness or numbness. The prosthetic hips may become loose or dislocated after the surgery.
Call your doctor immediately if you notice signs of infection such as swelling, redness, increased pain, or bleeding from the surgical wound.
You may require revision surgery if you experience bone loss, infection, or dislocation of the artificial parts. If your hip replacement is successful, you may require another replacement after 15 or 20 years, when the artificial hip wears out.
For more details about this treatment, visit:
Hip replacement – Mayo Clinic
Questions and Answers about Hip Replacement - National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
Treatment of Ankylosing Spondylitis and Related Diseases – Spondylitis Association of America
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