The anterior approach to total hip replacement has emerged as a practical alternative to the posterior approach that most surgeons still use. Although it has been in use to some degree since the 1980s, new instrumentation allowing it to be performed using smaller incisions has made it increasingly sought after.
Called the anterior hip replacement, this procedure involves the surgeon making a four-inch incision through the front of the leg, rather than the back (the entry point for the more conventional posterior hip replacement surgery). Frontal entry makes it possible to reach the joint by separating the muscles rather than cutting through them and reattaching them (used in the posterior approach). By keeping the muscles intact, the Anterior Approach may allow for less pain, faster recovery, quicker stability and fewer post-operative restrictions.
Although each patient responds differently, studies have shown the potential benefits of the Anterior Approach.
- Accelerated recovery time is possible because key muscles are not detached during the operation.
- Potential for fewer restrictions during recovery. This procedure seeks to help patients more freely bend their hip and bear their full weight immediately or soon after surgery.
- Possible reduced scarring because the technique allows for one relatively small incision. Since the incision is on the front side of the leg, you may be spared from the pain of sitting on scar tissue.
- Potential for stability of the implant sooner after surgery, resulting in part from the fact that they key muscles and tissues are not being disturbed during the operation.
- The Anterior Approach requires less tissue disruption, which may lead to faster rehabilitation.
We have four physicians at Orthopedic Institute who perform the Anterior Approach to hip replacement.
To schedule an appointment with Dr. Adler, McKenzie, Rothrock or Suga, please call 1-888-331-5890.
Michael J. Adler, MD
Matthew J. McKenzie, MD
Corey P. Rothrock, MD
Please check out this short video on the Anterior Approach to hip replacement.