Total hip replacement is an operation that removes a diseased, worn native hip joint, and replaces it with an articulating prostheses (metal implants) to provide pain relief and restore function. The most common reason is osteoarthritis. Other causes include childhood hip disorders, fractures around the hip, avascular necrosis (loss of blood supply), infection, increased stress (overuse, overweight), and inflammation such as rheumatoid arthritis.
The reason to replace a worn joint is pain that is causing considerable disability to a patient. This is a personal decision for each patient and while a hip replacement normally provides excellent pain relief and return of function, the potential risks also need to be considered when deciding when the right time for surgery is. Dr Rae will take the time to have a frank and full discussion of the procedure with you and also encourages you to discuss any major surgery with your local doctor and family and come back with any questions that you may have.
Once a decision to proceed with surgery has been made I will discuss with you the details of the operation and the hospital visit. Total hip replacement may be performed under general anaesthesia, spinal anaesthesia or both. Your anaesthetist will discuss what’s safest for you, but where possible we prefer a combination of spinal anaesthesia and ligh general anaesthetic. During the operation Dr Rae will also use deep infiltration of long acting local anaesthetic in the majority of cases. This along with a multimodal pain management directed by Dr Rae’s anaesthetist provides the best possible post-operative pain management and allows the majority of patients do be mobilised (walked) on the same day as the procedure. Hydrotherapy (exercises in a treated heated pool) can usually commence from day 5 post operatively at Sydney Private Hospital or elsewhere if the patient wishes. Throughout your recovery and rehabilitation phase Dr Rae’s team will focus on ways of minimising pain and requirement of narcotic (opiate) painkillers and maximising your functional return.
A total hip replacement is designed for long term performance with expected duration of 20-30 years and Dr Rae is uncompromising in his practice to ensure that the safest, most established techniques and equipment as demonstrated on the national joint registry is used on your hip.
I will discuss with you my recommended surgical option that will enable the best possible outcome and answer any questions that you may have.
Since this is general information, you can talk to Dr Hamish Rae, a hip specialist from Sydney, and he will tell you everything you need to know about your hip pain and treatment options. Please call 80055111 to make an appointment with this highly experienced hip replacement surgeon.