The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say that more seniors choose hip replacement surgery now than ever before. Even people in their 90s can enjoy improved mobility, more independence, and of course, freedom from the painful grind of osteoarthritis or damage from a hip fracture through hip replacement. Here are three facts to know about hip replacement surgery, or arthroplasty, for seniors.
1. Hip Fractures Can Be Life-Threatening for Seniors.
As we age, our bones become weaker, making them more susceptible to injuries such as fractures. Not only that, but injuries also become more detrimental when you are older. When a senior gets a hip fracture, they run the risk of the hip shattering into multiple tiny pieces, which increases the risk of many problems and lifelong disability.
Hip replacement is an excellent solution for weak or painful hips. Instead of waiting for a hip to fracture or get injured before pursuing treatment, which could be seriously dangerous to seniors, it’s better to get a hip replacement to strengthen the joint, reduce pain, and improve mobility and balance. Having a healthy hip can save seniors from getting injured and allow them to live life on their own terms, doing the activities they enjoy, for a longer period.
2. Today’s hip replacement surgeries are tailored to individual patient needs.
Essentially, there is room for customization when it comes to hip replacement. Orthopedic surgeons choose the best techniques and prosthetics for each patient based on their needs and preferences. Hip arthroplasty involves surgical removal of damaged joint components and installation of synthetic parts made from ceramic, metals, such as titanium, and plastic resins. Some patients need custom-made prostheses, while others do well with standard ball and socket options. The surgeon may cement the replacement parts in place or use a press-fit process.
Orthopedic surgeons may use one of three ways to approach arthroplasty: the traditional side incision, smaller arthroscopic incisions, or a posterior approach through the back of the hip area. Each approach has its own benefits and risks, so selecting the best one requires an in-depth understanding of the patient’s situation and needs.
3. Aftercare and Rehabilitation are Critical to Lasting Relief.
Regardless of age, rehabilitation, physical therapy, and aftercare are critical to surgery recovery. Whether you are a senior or a younger patient who requires a hip replacement, your surgeon will expect extensive dedication from you for aftercare and rehabilitation. Seniors especially must have in-house help for bathing, dressing, errands, cleaning, and meal preparation. Physical therapy to strengthen the hip and learn to move properly will begin in the hospital and continue at home, at a rehab facility, or at an outpatient clinic. This requires dedication from patients to follow the surgeon’s instructions and partake in the necessary rehabilitation sessions.
Even the oldest patients notice their new hip joints allow them to move comfortably and accomplish daily tasks more effectively. In essence, hip replacement surgery can be a new lease on life for seniors who struggle with pain, poor balance, strength, and ambulation for years.
Hip Replacement Surgery in San Antonio, TX
At the Center for Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine in San Antonio, TX, we have expert physicians on staff to help you with all your orthopedic needs. Whether you are a young athlete needing help with athletic performance enhancement or a senior wanting relief from chronic hip pain, we have the orthopedic expertise to diagnose and treat your condition using the latest and greatest treatments available in the field of orthopedic medicine.
If you have questions about hip replacement surgery, please contact our office to arrange a personal evaluation and consultation. Our doctors consider both surgical and non-operative options for patients with joint health issues.