Harry Bigwood Orthopod blogger

  • Direct Anterior Approach

    18 Sep 2008 /  Hip replacement


    Just hours after Dr. Dick Wallin had his right hip replaced, he stood up. The next day, he used a walker to “cruise around the nurses’ station” at St. Mark’s Hospital, and shortly after that he learned to use crutches on a stair exercise machine.

    When he went home on day three, he needed only one crutch, which he discarded a week later. Within a couple of weeks, he was walking down his long driveway to retrieve the newspaper and the mail. He was also driving again.

    “I was all set up for living in a restricted fashion, but by the time I went home in three days, I could go upstairs to my bedroom. It has been a surprisingly good experience,” said Wallin of a new approach to hip-replacement surgery that’s said to spare muscle and ligaments, seems to reduce the risk of dislocation, produces less pain and shortens recovery time.

    The key to a “direct anterior approach” total hip replacement is the positioning of the patient during surgery and the location of the incision itself, according to Dr. E. Marc Mariani, a board certified orthopedic surgeon at St. Mark’s Hospital who with colleague Dr. Michael H. Bourne and Dr. Peter Novak of the Salt Lake Orthopaedic Center are the first three Utah surgeons using the technique — something they predict will soon change.

    Seems like I’m starting my blog with a chain of cripes but I really get annoyed at these type of news articles. The work that we perform shouldn’t be marketed commercially as patients are to easily swayed and to unknowing to be able to make an intelligent choice.

    I use the poster-lateral approach for my hips and I have many success stories as above, with low blood loss etc. Also being able to make a slightly larger incision than usual I’m able to see what I do and make less mistakes.

    I do accept the fact that I could be simply out of date and need to get brought up to speed. Is there anyone out there that has some relevant experience that they’d like to share?

    Thanks, Harry.

    Posted by harrybig @ 12:15

    Tags: Hip replacement, Mini Invasive

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