Hip Joint Repair

Living with chronic hip pain can make daily activities such as walking, standing up and sitting down uncomfortable or nearly impossible. When conservative treatment options are not enough to ease the pain, your doctor may recommend hip joint repair or hip replacement surgery.

At Desert Care Primary and Specialty Care Orthopedics, our compassionate hip pain doctors in Coachella Valley, CA can provide the appropriate diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation for your condition. We are dedicated to offering minimally invasive treatments for hip conditions wherever possible. Many hip injuries can be diagnosed and repaired via outpatient care, allowing you to return to your activities as soon as possible or even prevent more invasive procedures.

    What Causes Pain in Hips?

    The hip joint is composed of a ball (femoral head) and socket (acetabulum). The femoral head (upper end of the thigh bone) fits into the acetabulum. The articular cartilage coats the surface of the ball and socket, creating a smooth and frictionless surface so that the bones glide over each other.

    Overdoing physical activity may cause soft tissues, such as tendons, to become inflamed or strained, resulting in hip pain. This kind of hip pain typically goes away after a few days. However, chronic or long-term hip pain may be caused by certain conditions, such as:

    • Arthritis – causes inflammation and pain in the hip joint. It has several types:
      • Osteoarthritis – also known as degenerative joint disease, osteoarthritis happens when joint cartilage wears away and starts to break down, decreasing the space between the bones. As a result, bones rub on each other, causing pain, swelling and stiffness.
      • Rheumatoid arthritis – happens when a person’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells in his or her body. It results in inflammation in the affected body parts.
      • Ankylosing spondylitis – specifically affects the ligaments and joints.
    • Bursitis – painful swelling around the joints.
    • Injuries – sports injuries, traumatic accidents and repetitive strains may result in hip pain. Here are some injuries that may result in hip pain:
      • Hip muscle strains
      • Iliotibial band syndrome
      • Hip labral tears
      • Fractures – broken bones
      • Hip dislocation

    Structural conditions – some people are born with conditions that affect their hip shape and result in long-term pain, including:

    • Femoroacetabular impingement – unusual hip joint shape.
    • Developmental dysplasia of the hip – happens when the bones in the hip joint do not properly fit together.

    What Is Hip Repair?

    Hip repair, also known as hip pinning or internal fixation, is a surgical procedure aimed to address specific joint issues while preserving its natural components. In this surgery, the surgeon uses rods, plates or metal screws to hold the bones in the hip together to help with healing. Hip joint repair is a treatment option if the bones can still be properly lined up.

    What Is Hip Replacement?

    Hip joint replacement involves using artificial implants to replace the damaged joints and simulate the function of a typical joint. Hip replacement surgeons will remove the damaged ball or femoral head and cartilage from the hip socket. A ceramic or metal ball will replace the original ball. Then, a metal cup will replace the socket and be fixed to the acetabulum. Hip replacement surgeries typically last up to two hours. Hip replacements can be:

    • Total hip replacement – both the ball and socket of the hip joint are replaced.
    • Partial hip replacement – only the femoral head is replaced and the hip socket remains intact.

    Generally, joint replacements can still function 15-20 years later, but other factors, such as wear and tear caused by decades of movement, can affect its performance and lifespan. Younger patients may need to have their artificial hips and knees revised during their lifetime.

    Preparing for Hip Repair or Replacement Surgery

    In the weeks before your procedure, your doctor may check your overall health and require blood and imaging tests to help plan your surgery. Make sure to prepare ahead for the challenges of surgery and recovery. You can start by learning about the procedure and talking to your doctor regarding what to expect before, during and after surgery. Some questions you may want to ask include the following:

    • What is the hospital's admission process?
    • What type of anesthesia is suited for my condition?
    • What are the available implant or prosthetic options?
    • How long is the recovery process?
    • What medications should I take for pain management?

    Recovery From a Hip Repair or Replacement Surgery

    Your doctor will encourage you to start moving around as soon as possible after surgery. They may also prescribe pain relievers or blood-thinning medications to help with your healing. You may need to undergo a rehabilitation program that includes occupational therapy and physical therapy where you can learn:

    • Exercises to help improve your strength and mobility
    • New ways to perform simple activities
    • Safe ways to stay physically active

    Following your doctor’s instructions and participating in rehab programs can help speed up your recovery and get you back to your routine.

    Find an Orthopedic Surgeon in Coachella Valley

    Hip pain doesn’t have to be a part of your life. Speak with one of our orthopedic doctors to learn more about treatments for your joint aches and pain. We are here for you so you can get the treatment suited to your unique needs. Please don’t delay care.



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