AIM OF THE TOTAL HIP REPLACEMENT
The principle aims of the hip replacement are to reduce your pain, correct any deformity, enhance your mobility that is impeded by your hip and improve the quality of your life. This can be achieved in up to 95% of cases. The hip replacement involves replacing a hip joint that has been damaged or worn away, usually by arthritis or injury.
WHAT IS ARTHRITIS?
Osteoarthritis is characterised by joint pain and mobility impairment associated with the gradual wearing of cartilage. The wear and tear of the joint frequently results in pain, stiffness and reduced movement. The clinical diagnosis is usually based on the presence of joint symptoms and evidence of a reduction of joint space seen on the x-ray. There are different types of arthritis causing joint pain for example osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and post traumatic arthritis.
HOW COMMON IS ARTHRITIS?
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of chronic arthritis. The condition affects approximately 1.4 million Australians, or approximately 7.3% of the population. The prevalence of osteoarthritis increases with age. Osteoarthritis most commonly develops between the ages of 45 to 90 years. The pain and disability associated with osteoarthritis affects approximately 10% of men and 18% of women over 60 years of age. The incidence and prevalence of osteoarthritis will continue to rise as the population ages. The hip is the second most commonly affected joint in the body.
THE HIP JOINT
The hip joint is a ball and socket joint. The hip joint allows movement to occur between the thigh bone (femur) and the hip bone (pelvis). The pelvis contains the socket (acetabulum) and the ball shaped head of the femur fits into the acetabulum.
The outer surface of the femoral head and the inside surface of the acetabulum are covered with cartilage which allows low friction free movement between the two surfaces. The hip joint is covered by ligaments that help stabilise the joint. The hip joint movements are initiated and controlled by the muscles in the buttock, groin and thigh.