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Direct Anterior Total Hip Replacement

What is Direct Anterior Total Hip Replacement?

Direct Anterior Total Hip Replacement is a surgical technique used to replace a damaged or diseased hip joint. Unlike traditional hip replacement surgeries, which require an incision to be made on the side or back of the hip, the direct anterior approach allows the hip surgeon to access the hip joint through a smaller incision on the front of the hip.

During a direct anterior total hip replacement, the patient is placed on their back, and the hip surgeon makes a small incision on the front of the hip, between the muscles and without cutting any muscle. The hip surgeon then uses specialized instruments to remove the damaged bone and cartilage in the hip joint and replace it with an artificial hip joint, which can be made of materials such as metal, ceramic, or plastic.

One of the key benefits of the direct anterior approach is that it allows for a more precise placement of the implant, which can improve stability, reduce the risk of dislocation, and potentially lead to faster recovery times. Additionally, because the incision is smaller and muscles are not cut, patients may experience less pain, a faster return to normal activities, and a shorter hospital stay.

Here is a full list of the benefits of the Direct Anterior Total Hip Replacement technique:

  1. Less muscle damage: The hip surgeon can access the hip joint without cutting or detaching major muscles, which can reduce muscle damage and promote faster recovery.
  2. Smaller incision: The incision made is typically smaller than those made for traditional hip replacement procedures, which can result in less scarring and a reduced risk of infection.
  3. Faster recovery: Because the direct anterior approach results in less muscle damage, patients may experience a faster recovery time and be able to return to normal activities more quickly.
  4. Reduced pain: Patients may experience less postoperative pain, which can lead to a more comfortable recovery period.
  5. Improved stability: The direct anterior approach allows for more precise placement of the artificial hip joint, which can improve joint stability and reduce the risk of dislocation.
  6. Shorter hospital stay: With the potential for faster recovery, patients may have a shorter hospital stay compared to traditional hip replacement surgery.

Not all patients are candidates for Direct Anterior Total Hip Replacement, and the suitability of this approach depends on several individual factors, including the patient’s age, hip condition, and anatomy.

Generally, patients who may be candidates for Direct Anterior Total Hip Replacement include those who:

  1. Have hip pain and dysfunction that has not responded to conservative treatments such as physical therapy or medications.
  2. Have been diagnosed with hip conditions such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or avascular necrosis.
  3. Are in generally good health and have no underlying medical conditions that would increase the risks of surgery.
  4. Have good bone quality and density, which is necessary to ensure the stability and longevity of the artificial joint.
  5. Have a body mass index (BMI) that is not too high, as obesity can increase the risks of surgery and potentially compromise the results.
  6. Have adequate hip anatomy, including a narrow femoral canal and adequate bone density and shape.

It’s important to note that some patients may not be suitable for Direct Anterior Total Hip Replacement, and the decision to proceed with this technique should be made on an individual basis after a thorough evaluation by an experienced orthopedic hip surgeon like those at LALL Orthopedics +.

Dr. Ajay C. Lall is a former dual sport NCAA collegiate athlete (football and track & field), American board certified, triple fellowship-trained expert orthopedic surgeon who specializes in hip arthroscopy, robotic hip replacement and cutting-edge regenerative medicine such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and Stem-Cell therapy. He treats non-athletes and athletes at all levels of play from collegiate to professional to the Olympic level. Dr. Lall is a world-renowned orthopedic surgeon who cares for all patients like family. Contact LALL Orthopedics + to schedule a consultation, receive the correct diagnosis, and undergo state-of-the-art treatment options.

At a Glance

Ajay C. Lall, MD, MS, FAAOS

  • Board Certified – Orthopedic Surgery
  • Triple Fellowship Trained
  • Performs over 750 Surgeries Per Year
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