Anterior Hip Replacement

The field of orthopedic surgery is changing rapidly. Advances in minimally invasive techniques are enabling surgeons to offer procedures that result in faster recovery times and shorter hospital stays. One of the most innovative techniques is the anterior approach to hip replacement surgery. For patients suffering with arthritis, hip pain and stiffness, this is a less-invasive procedure.

What is the Anterior Approach?

By using the anterior approach, the surgeon is able to reach the hip joint from the front of the hip as opposed to the lateral (side) or posterior (back) approach. This allows the hip to be replaced without detaching the muscle from the pelvis or femur (thighbone) during surgery. The surgeon works through the natural interval between the muscles.

The procedure is performed using the state-of-the-art hana® (hip and knee arthroplasty) table, which has unique patient positioning capabilities that enable the surgeon to replace the hip through a single incision.

How Is Patient Recovery Improved?

Traditional hip replacement typically requires strict precautions for the patient. Most patients must limit hip motion for six to eight weeks after surgery. Flexing of the hip is also limited, which complicates normal activities like sitting in a chair, putting on shoes or getting into a car. Climbing stairs may also be more difficult during recovery.

Patients who have hip replacement using the anterior approach are able to immediately bend their hip freely and bear full weight when comfortable, resulting in a more rapid return to normal function. After surgery, patients are instructed to use their hip normally without restrictions. In supervised therapy, patients go up and down stairs before they are discharged from the hospital.