Hip hemiarthroplasty is a procedure used to treat hip fractures that is like a total hip replacement but only part of the hip is replaced. While this procedure is predominantly used to treat hip fractures, it is also used to treat hip arthritis. The recovery process is very similar to that of a total hip replacement. You will have to go through physical therapy to regain both strength and flexibility in the hip. If the operation is successful and there are no complications, you should enjoy a long, healthy use of your new hip.
A hip hemiarthroplasty is a surgical procedure where half of the hip is replaced. This procedure is typically used to repair a broken or fractured hip but can also be used to treat a hip damaged by arthritis.
There are many benefits of getting a hip hemiarthroplasty as opposed to a more intensive procedure, such as a total hip replacement. For example, this procedure results in less surgical time and less blood loss, as well as a decreased chance of dislocating the hip after the procedure.
The main reason your Florida Orthopaedic Institute physician would choose to perform this procedure as opposed to a total hip replacement is if your acetabulum (where the head of the femur meets with the pelvis) is relatively healthy with little arthritis.
If you have fractured your hip or have serious hip arthritis, a complete hip replacement may be necessary to restore function to your hip. If the femoral head is broken, but the acetabulum is intact, you may be a good candidate for a hemiarthroplasty. Your Florida Orthopaedic Institute physician will look at your hip fracture and determine which procedure is best for you.
During a hip hemiarthroplasty, the head of the damaged thighbone (femur) is replaced with an implant that stabilizes the femur while restoring function to the hip. When the head of the femur is removed, the inside of the femur is hollowed out, and a metal stem is placed snugly inside the femur. Unlike a total hip replacement, only the ball or head of the femur is replaced. In a total hip replacement, both the ball of the femur and the entire hip socket are replaced.
This procedure is done either under general anesthesia, meaning you will be asleep, or with a regional anesthetic, which means your legs will be numb, but you will be awake. Your Florida Orthopaedic Institute physician will determine which of these options will be best for you.
There are some complications associated with this procedure. These include:
- Blot Clot.
- Loosening. When the prosthetic hip loses some of its connection to the bone prematurely.
Immediately after the procedure, you will be prescribed pain medications. You will also have to begin physical therapy to help regain strength and flexibility in the hip. Physical therapy starts while you’re still in the hospital and continues after you’re sent home or discharged to a step-down facility.
Once you have been discharged from the hospital, you may have at-home therapy or follow-up appointments at a physical therapy facility. The duration of your therapy depends on several factors, including your age and fitness.
As for the future, you may have to permanently avoid or reduce activities that need heavy lifting or lots of climbing. Your ability to run and play sports, such as tennis, may also be limited. But low-impact exercise should be part of your lifestyle for all-around health.
Contact your Florida Orthopaedic Institute physician for more information on hip hemiarthroplasty.