Hello again, this is Dr. H taking a quick break from vacation to update my blog. The latest thing that I've been into is anterior hip replacement surgery. Hip replacement is something that I've done for years but only for fractures. Only recently have I really felt that I'm able to offer a significant improvement in hip replacement by offering the replacement to be performed through the "anterior" approach.
The anterior approach has several benefits to patients. Generally the anterior approach is less painful In an anterior approach hip replacement muscles are simply moved out of the way. All the other methods require muscles to be either detached from the hip bone or to be split resulting in increased pain. I have spent time in Los Angeles, California learning this approach from Dr. Joel Matta. He has spent 20 years perfecting this approach in the United States after bringing this technology from Europe.
Patients who have hip replacement with the anterior hip approach are much less likely to either dislocate their hip following surgery or to have a leg length inequality. The problem with other hip replacement approaches is that to prevent the hip from dislocating the leg has to be made longer. This results in a noticeable limp and potentially lower back pain.
When a person has their hip replaced, the surgery is usually done with the patient lying on their side. Because of this, inaccurate placement of the components is more likely. Lake Area Medial Center has purchased a specialized table just to do this approach, the Hana table designed by Dr. Matta. With this particular table the patient is able to be laid flat on their back for surgery. By laying the patient flat and using this table, I am able to position the hip to acquire the exact length as the other leg. In addition, I am able to take x-rays during surgery to ensure proper placement of the metal components. The information from the x-rays can then be fed into a computer allowing even more accurate placement of the hip components.
I really think this is all a big plus for patient care. Lake Area Medical Center has made a major commitment to this procedure being the only area hospital to have this specialized equipment. Thanks to their support I can now offer this service to my patients.
Now that I have been performing this procedure since October of 2015, I see a huge improvement in patient outcome.