Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach

What is the Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach?


The total hip replacement-direct anterior approach is a minimally invasive type of surgery performed to replace an injured or damaged hip. This surgical procedure aims at avoiding nearby tendons and muscles, making it a more technically demanding surgery.

Not every hip surgeon can perform the hip replacement anterior approach surgery because it involves a complex approach to joint reconstruction.  Anterior hip replacement surgery is highly recommended for patients who opt for less pain and a shorter recovery time.

Typically, your hip joint is made up of a ball located at the top of the thigh bone, also called the femur. The hip also consists of a socket or the hip bone in the pelvis region of your body. Therefore, hip replacement or hip arthroplasty replaces parts of the damaged hip joint with implants to help you assume your daily activities with less pain.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach


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As explained earlier, the anterior hip replacement is a frontal entry surgical procedure that makes it possible to access the damaged hip joint. The technique separates attaching muscles rather than cutting them before reattachment. Check out the following advantages and disadvantages of the hip replacement anterior approach:

Advantages of Total Hip Replacement-Anterior Approach

  1. An anterior hip replacement approach is likely to result in a quicker recovery time. In addition, this anterior hip replacement recovery time will assure you a shorter hospital stay thanks to less damage to anterior hip muscles.
  2. The total hip replacement anterior approach enables your surgeon to measure the artificial implant position and leg length, ensuring more accurate surgery.
  3. There are fewer anterior approach hip precautions that you need to follow to prevent complications such as dislocation.
  4. Anterior hip replacement technique gives you a good view of your anterior hip muscles and hip socket during the surgery process

Disadvantages of Total Hip Replacement-Anterior Approach

  1. Specialized retractors or a special operation table and specific surgical tools are required and this makes the process a little more difficult than other hip replacement surgical procedures.  Dr. Stewart is trained on and proficient in Anterior Approach to Hip Replacement Surgery on and off the specialized table.
  2. You are likely to be exposed to a slightly higher risk of ankle and femoral fractures.
  3. You may experience swelling after hip replacement, pain after hip replacement, or some tingling, burning sensation, or numbness along the thigh. This phenomenon is known as lateral femoral cutaneous nerve injury.
  4. There is evidence that Anterior total Hip Replacement has a lower deep infection, although a slightly higher incidence of wound healing issues.

Who Should Consider Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach Surgery?


You may require a total hip replacement-anterior approach surgery if you experience inflammation, damage, pain, and injury on your hip joint. All these indicators come as a result of conditions like:

  • Osteoarthritis (a most common cause of hip pain)
  • Osteonecrosis or avascular necrosis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Tumor around your hip joint
  • Injuries such as hip dislocation and hip fracture

Sometimes you may consider anterior hip replacement surgery if your quality of life is deteriorating due to pain in the hip. Here are the common signs to show you that you need total hip replacement-anterior approach surgery:

  • Difficulty doing the usual simple tasks such as climbing stairs or getting dressed
  • Inability to enjoy your sleep because of hip pain
  • Inability to take part in the activities you enjoy the most

Once you experience the above-mentioned conditions, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor for medical interventions. Your doctor will recommend other treatment options, such as taking prescribed medicine to relieve pain and inflammation.

The doctor may also suggest the use of exercise, weight loss, anti-inflammatory medicines, walking aids, physical therapy, and joint injections. If all these measures fail to reduce stiffness and pain, anterior total hip replacement surgery may be your next treatment option to help restore function or improve your quality of life.

Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach Diagnosis


The diagnosis of a condition that may require a total hip replacement-anterior approach is usually done in combination with your medical history. A localized pain in your hip area, physical examination, hip replacement X-ray, MRI, and EMG are some of the techniques used during the diagnosis process.

  1. X-ray: Your caregiver may decide to have an X-ray done on your hip. The X-ray will provide a detailed image of your hip and the condition of the hip joint.
  2. MRI: Magnetic resonance imaging may also help your healthcare provider determine the severity of your hip joint injury. MRI uses powerful radio waves, a magnetic field, and a computer to create detailed images of the inside of your pelvis.
  3. EMG: This is a type of electrodiagnostic testing that helps doctors study muscle and nerve function. EMG testing is done by a neurologist or a physiatrist. In this regard, EMG testing will show the extent of muscle or nerve injury and also determine the location of pathology before you are scheduled for surgery.

Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach Treatment


The total hip arthroplasty-anterior approach is increasingly becoming popular among patients of different ages and surgeons. This form of anterior hip replacements provides improved quick results in terms of rehabilitation, pain, and duration of stay in the hospital. As a result,

Treatment in Adults

The treatment of anterior hip replacement surgery in adults involves making small incisions near the front side of the hip. Incisions provide an easy way for the surgeon to access anterior hips muscles by removing damaged cartilage and bones. They also enable the surgeon to insert artificial implants without damaging nearby tendons and muscles. With this form of surgery, anterior hip precautions are crucial.

Risks of Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach Surgery


Like all other surgical procedures, the total hip replacement-anterior approach has its own risks and complications. These risks include:

  • Infections
  • Bleeding
  • Possible dislocations
  • Fracture of your femur
  • Leg length differences
  • Wound healing problems
  • Artery and nerve injuries
  • swelling after hip replacement
  • Blood clots in the lungs or legs, or other medical complications
  • Continued stiffness and pain after hip replacement
  • Loosening, shifting (subsidence) and wearing out of the artificial implants (prosthesis)

Post-Operative Care of Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach Surgery


Once your total hip replacement-anterior approach surgery is over, your healthcare provider will give instructions on how to take care of yourself as you recover. In this case, you may be required to strictly follow these post-operative care directives for effective anterior hip replacement recovery week by week:

  1. Walk at least 3 times a day provided that you feel comfortable while doing so to speed up your total hip replacement recovery time.
  2. You must maintain specific hip precautions to avoid dislocation. Some of these precautions include not rotating your foot outward and not extending your hip behind you until you are fully recovered.
  3. Gradually decrease the number of medicines that you take to relieve pain
  4. Take anti-inflammatory medication like Celebrex, naproxen, or ibuprofen as prescribed by your doctor
  5. Do the recommended exercises as instructed by your healthcare provider. In this sense, you may perform exercises such as ankle pumps, quad sets, gluteal squeezes; side raises or hip adduction, hip extensions, and a few strain leg raises

Find the Best Total Hip Replacement – Anterior Approach Center near you in Sarasota, Florida

Sforzo I Dillingham I Stewart Orthopedics + Sports Medicine is a leader in different types of surgeries, including the total hip replacement surgery-anterior approach. Dr. Charles E. Stewart is board-certified and fellowship-trained in providing minimally invasive hip replacement surgery approaches not found in most places.

These approaches are tailored towards smoother and safer surgical experiences, including quicker recoveries. Sforzo I Dillingham I Stewart Orthopedics +Sports Medicine boasts special expertise and skilled surgeons who can perform anterior total hip replacement surgery.

In particular, Dr. Charles E. Stewart is knowledgeable about minimally invasive techniques and is an expert in hip joint replacement, arthritis surgery, tendon repair, and fracture repair.  Dr. Stewart can perform complex reconstruction of failed knee and hip arthroplasties and the technically demanding primary total hip replacement-anterior approach.

Final Thought

It is normal for patients to get worried about what comes during and after anterior approach hip replacement. A good example is the anterior hip replacement scar that reminds you of this surgical procedure. If you are worried about this surgical procedure, just know that it is natural, normal, and understandable. For additional information about total hip replacement-anterior approach surgery, contact Sforzo | Dillingham |Stewart Orthopedics + Sports Medicine to schedule your appointment today.