Minimally invasive hip replacement by Chicago top rated orthopedic surgeon provides immediate relief and speeds recovery time

Field of Medicine: Orthopedic Surgery

By Nick Rees

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The hip, which is one of the largest weight-bearing joints in the body, can be damaged by a fracture, arthritis or other conditions that can make simple acts like walking or standing up painful and difficult.

A total hip replacement can alleviate this chronic pain if medications, changes to everyday activities or the use of walking aids have not provided relief. During a total hip replacement, an artificial joint is used to replace the diseased hip joint, increasing motion and relieving pain.

"With a hip replacement, the big thing is that the severe pain most people have pre-op is gone immediately after surgery," Dr. Mark Gross, a top rated orthopaedic surgeon in Chicago, says.

More than 193,000 people annually have total hip replacement in the United States.

Typically, a total hip replacement requires a large, open procedure with a hospitalization time of three to four days. Dr. Gross, however, uses a minimally invasive technique that uses a smaller incision, shortening hospitalization time to one to two day.

"The incisions are three to four inches in size for a total hip replacement, so they're small," Dr. Gross says. "Minimally invasive means that it's a technique that involves less of an incision to accomplish a procedure typically done with a larger, open procedure. What that does is cause less pain from surgery, less blood loss and a smaller scar, and a quicker recovery time.

"Most people after the minimally invasive hip replacement surgery are walking without a cane or walker within three weeks or even sooner. People bounce back quickly from this procedure. If the procedure is done early in the day, the patient is up and walking later that afternoon. Most people can walk with full weighting bearing as soon as they stand up. They don't need to use a walker, which is used more for balance."

Dr. Gross says that the minimally invasive technique is even more successful because of a pre-op teaching class that his patients go through.

"The class is taught by nurses, physical therapists and discharge planners," Dr. Gross says. "It walks the patient through the entire process, from pre-op to post-op."

After the surgery, most people, Dr. Gross says, are able to begin outpatient therapy within three weeks and sometimes sooner, with restrictions on the patient lifted within as little as four to six weeks.

"The longevity for total hip replacements, especially with the minimally invasive procedure, is 15 years," Dr. Gross says. Out of every 100 patients, 90 will be fine after that time. The other 10 might need a revision because they're either obese or abusive to their prosthesis by playing sports, which plays a part in longevity of the replacement."

Dr. Mark Gross was selected in 2010 by TopTierMD as a Chicago Top Doctor - He was named a Best Chicago Orthopaedic Surgery specializing in Minimally Invasive Hip and Knee Joint Replacement, Minimally Invasive Unicondylar Knee Arthroplasty, and Patellofemoral Knee Arthroplasty. He practices in Barrington Office, IL.

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