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Hip

If you suffer with hip pain, stiffness or swelling due to arthritis or another joint disorder, it can have severe implications on accomplishing even simple everyday tasks.

That’s why we offer a team of board-certified orthopedists who specialize in both surgical and non-surgical treatments, to get you back to doing what you love. Our specially trained physicians and surgeons provide a level of experience that no other orthopedic practice in Maine can match- and it’s reflected in our patients’ excellent outcomes.

The hip conditions we treat

The hip services Spectrum Orthopaedics provides

You can count on our team for highly-specialized diagnostic resources and treatments, including:

  • Advanced imaging including MRI and arthrography (a special x-ray to examine the interior of a joint)
  • Non-surgical treatments including pain management (anti-inflammatory medications, cortisone injections) and physical and occupational therapy
  • Minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery, usually performed in an ambulatory setting
  • Design and fabrication of custom splints or braces to protect and/or rehabilitate an injured area
  • Total joint replacement for degenerative or arthritic problems

When do you need a hip joint replacement?

Before we recommend hip joint replacement surgery, we typically suggest non-surgical measures to alleviate your pain and stiffness, and preserve your natural joint. These conservative treatments may include:

  • Over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDS) such as ibuprofen, naproxen and acetaminophen
  • Avoiding or modifying activities that cause pain
  • Physical therapy and low-impact exercise
  • Weight loss to take pressure off damaged joints
  • Bracing to provide support
  • Corticosteroid injections

If these conservative measures don’t provide sufficient relief, joint replacement may be the best solution for eliminating your pain and restoring mobility. But this decision is made only after a thorough health evaluation and discussion between you and our orthopedic specialists.

Types of hip joint replacement

Spectrum’s orthopedic surgeons perform a wide variety of today’s most advanced joint replacement procedures, including:

Minimally invasive hip replacement

In traditional hip replacement, the surgeon makes a single, long incision on the side or back of the hip to access the hip joint. Muscles are split or detached from the hip so it can be dislocated and fully viewed. The damaged bone is then cut and removed. With the minimally invasive approach, the surgeon makes one or two shorter incisions, and fewer muscles around the hip are cut or detached. With the minimally invasive approach, there tends to be less soft-tissue damage, a quicker and less painful recovery, and faster return to normal activities. It is not appropriate for everyone, however; the most suitable candidates are thinner, younger, healthier, and motivated to participate in rehabilitation.

Direct anterior hip replacement

This is a minimally invasive surgical technique that involves a 3” to 4” incision on the front (anterior) of the hip. This approach enables the surgeon to access the joint by moving muscles aside along their natural tissue planes, without detaching any tendons. The direct anterior hip replacement procedure often results in quicker recovery, less pain, and more normal function after hip replacement. Patients are able to return to their regular activities shortly after surgery with a reduced risk of dislocation.

Know what to expect from hip joint replacement surgery

Studies show that informed patients have better outcomes. There are a number of ways to being informed about your hip joint replacement procedure. Our hospital partners offer free joint classes and connect you with a nurse navigator to make sure you have all the information you need for your hospital procedure. If you are scheduled to have your joint replacement as an overnight patient in the hospital you will be provided the pre-surgical class schedule.

An innovative approach to pain management

Rather than rely solely on narcotic medications for pain management after joint replacement, Spectrum takes an innovative multi-modal approach. This means administering two or more drugs that act by different mechanisms to provide pain relief—such as regional nerve blocks and non-narcotic medications.

Research shows that this approach improves pain relief while reducing opioid requirements and their related adverse effects—including the risk of addiction.

Importantly, it enables our patients to be up and moving—without significant pain—within hours of surgery, putting them on a fast path to recovery.

Physical rehabilitation: The key to your recovery

Hip joint replacement surgery is only the first step in regaining your range of motion, strength, flexibility, endurance, and ability to perform everyday activities. An individualizedphysical therapy program is essential for your optimal recovery.

You’ll begin your physical rehabilitation before your planned procedure and then within hours of waking up from surgery, starting with gentle exercises to help you bear weight and move your new joint. Your Spectrum Orthopaedics team will refer you to meet with your therapist before surgery and then you will schedule appointments to be ready for rehabilitation right after discharge.

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