In this article below, highly reputable consultant orthopaedic and trauma surgeon, Mr Adam Cohen, details how a typical hip arthroscopy is performed.
When is a hip arthroscopy necessary and who is most suitable for it?
A hip arthroscopy is generally an operation I preserve for younger patients. They often have abnormalities, injuries, or deformities of the hip. The typical deformities are usually when someone has some form of bone abnormality, usually on the femur side of the hip joint, excessive bone, tears of the cartilage, and loose bodies within their hip joint that require removal.
How can patients prepare for a hip arthroscopy?
Most patients will be referred for some sort of physiotherapy before they have had a hip arthroscopy. We don’t want patients gaining too much weight as this will complicate surgery. Patients should inform themselves as much as possible about the surgery before undergoing it.
What happens during a hip arthroscopy?
Most patients will be fully asleep. The muscles have to be fully relaxed while the operation takes place. Patients are put on a special operating table which is a table that is able to provide traction to the hip joint.
The wounds that we make on the side of the leg are normally small. With very narrow cameras and instruments, we can put these instruments through the gap that we have inserted. We can remove bone from areas that we don’t want bones to be. We can also repair cartilage.
Generally speaking, it takes no more than a half a hour, but in some cases, it can last around two and a half hours.
Is it a painful procedure?
No, it’s not very painful. Pain-relieving medications work effectively. I Inject a lot of local anaesthetic in and around the hip joint at the end of the surgery to reduce the pain.
Are there any associated lasting side effects?
Not usually, no. Patients could suffer a complication from the surgery. The only situation where this could be a possibility is when the pathology of the hip joint was too severe for the surgeon to correct.
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