The last two questions we’ll address in this series about total hip replacement relate to regaining motion and to residual hip pain.
Will I notice anything different about my hip?
Hopefully the first thing that you notice is that the pain you were having… is gone. It is temporarily replaced with the surgical pain that gradually dissipates. Occasionally patients notice a “thick, swollen, or painful” sensation to the front of their thigh. This normally resolves over a few weeks.
Also, a numb feeling along the front and side of the thigh is frequently present due to skin nerve manipulation. This often resolves, but occasionally is permanent and will leave you with a numb, insensitive patch along the lateral thigh.
With the direct anterior approach technique, a live fluoroscopic X-ray is used during the case to observe the placement of the prosthesis. This allows for a direct comparison to the opposite hip in determining leg length and offset; and thus the most accurate placement of the component parts. Despite this accuracy, patients can “feel” long on this leg for a period of time post-operatively as you become accustomed to your new joint.
A Note of Encouragement
Despite some real risks associated with this surgery and, indeed, virtually all surgical procedures, you should be confident that you have given this undertaking great thought and weighed the pros and cons of the procedure. You have reviewed all of your questions with your surgeon, Dr. Zehr, and have had additional questions reviewed in this section.
In short, this is a very common and very successful operation to relieve the severe pain in your joint that has kept you from enjoying your life. If there was any reasonable alternative path around this procedure you would have taken that path. As it is, you are on a road that approximately 1,400,000 people per year take and which leads the vast majority to a point of extreme appreciation with that choice. In addition, you have chosen a surgeon and his team that which are vastly experienced, dedicated to your outcome and excited to help you through this life changing experience.
Relax… It is going to be all right for you!
For more information on this subject, call The Zehr Center for Orthopaedics at 239-596-0100 or visit www.zehrcenter.com. The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments, or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of a visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read on this topic.