Does it hurt when you walk, climb stairs, or sit up in the morning? If the pain isn’t going away, and medicine hasn’t helped, hip replacement surgery could drastically improve your quality of life. Many people struggle through their daily routine, bearing intense discomfort or giving up activities they previously enjoyed because of a pained and damaged hip joint. For those who qualify for a hip replacement, this surgery could make a life-changing difference.
When to Consider Hip Replacement
Not sure when to involve your doctor? You might need to have a discussion about hip replacement if you are experiencing these symptoms:
- Pain while using stairs
- Inability to perform your usual daily activities, such as taking a walk
- Trouble sleeping because of discomfort
- Insufficient pain relief from medications
- Difficulty sitting or standing
Your doctor may suggest a hip replacement if you break a hip, or if you have osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteonecrosis, or other issues. Before making a recommendation, your doctor will take a complete medical history. He or she will do a physical exam to check your hip strength and alignment. You may also require X-rays or an MRI to review the damage in your hip.
In some cases, you may not be a good candidate for hip replacement surgery. Age can be a factor. Individuals over the age of 95 may experience increased risks associated with surgery, so it is important to ask your physician about your individual situation. Likewise, physicians may recommend alternative treatments for individuals under the age of 30 before suggesting hip replacement surgery. Weight can also play an important role in your recovery from surgery, and physicians may recommend an exercise and diet program for individuals over 300 pounds. Your physician may also evaluate your overall health and nutrition or look for untreated conditions before consenting to a surgery.
Other options can help patients who do not want or cannot have hip replacement surgery. Pain medication might relieve discomfort, especially when coupled with physical or occupational therapy. Using a walker or cane can also ease pain and decrease the stress on your hip joints.
What to Expect
If you and your doctor determine that hip replacement is right for you, be sure you know what to expect. The surgery itself usually takes a few hours, and you’ll stay in the hospital for a few days afterward. As you recovery, you will be advised to start a walking program. You may also work with a physical therapist to help you regain range of motion and strength. You will need to avoid high-impact exercise, such as jogging. However, you will be encouraged to resume everyday activities.
If you are experiencing hip pain, contact Denton Regional Medical Center. Our medical team can offer comprehensive treatment and care. If you have questions, please call (940) 898-0629 for a physician referral.