Community Blog

When it’s Time for Hip Replacement Surgery

By Ketan Patel

Over 300,000 hip replacement surgeries are performed annually, many of them on patients ages 75 and older. Seniors who are in reasonably good health can benefit from pain relief and greater mobility, just as younger patients do. Older folks are more likely to need hip replacements because the severity and rate of osteoarthritis, dubbed “wear and tear” arthritis, increases with age.

Total replacements are also used in the event of a fall and resulting hip fracture. If your loved one is considering total hip replacement surgery, be aware that s/he will need some help during recovery. Elder home care is a good way to insure your aging loved one’s needs are met.

Determining the Need for Surgery

People generally turn to hip replacement surgery when hip pain becomes so severe that it does not respond to simpler solutions. The doctor may recommend weight control, medication, walking aids and exercise before recommending surgery. Surgery is indicated when pain threatens the senior’s independence by making it hard to walk, get dressed and get in and out of cars. Some people are not candidates for surgery because of medical conditions like high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes.

What is Hip Replacement?

During hip replacement surgery, the doctor replaces the defective hip joint with a new, artificial joint. An incision is made on the side of the hip and the ball portion of the joint is removed. Minimally invasive techniques involve smaller one or two 2 – 5 inch cuts. The new joint is then inserted into the socket of the hip.

Recovering after Hip Replacement Surgery

Individuals who have had hip replacement surgery generally stay in the hospital for 4-6 days. Sometimes a wedge-shaped cushion or pillow is placed between the legs to keep the artificial joint in the right place. Most people sign up for sessions with a physical therapist who may recommend that you not cross your leg or bend at the hip past 90 degrees to avoid dislocating the new hip joint. An in-home caregiver can provide transportation to doctor and physical therapist appointments.

Tips for an Easy Recovery after Hip Surgery

  • Use the stairs only once or twice each day.
  • Remove throw rugs to avoid falls.
  • Do not use a recliner. Instead, use a straight backed chair.
  • Use an elevated toilet seat.
  • Do not drive until you have been cleared by the doctor.

Hiring a Caregiver

The home care providers at Home Helpers of South Shore can help your loved one after hip surgery. A home healthcare professional can help with meal preparation, bathing and dressing and provide transportation.

Home Helpers of South Shore is owned and operated by a compassionate health professional with a strong understanding of the needs of aging seniors. Contact Home Helpers to help your aging loved one. Please fill out the form on the left and we will get in touch with you about setting up in-home health care, or call us at 781-585-1244 to determine the plan that is right for you.

We serve the following communities:

Abington , Braintree , Brockton , Buzzards Bay , Carver , Cohasset, Dighton , Duxbury , Falmouth , Halifax , Hanson , Hingham , Holbrook , Hull , Humarock , Kingston , Lakeville , Marshfield , Mashpee , Middleboro , Norwell , Pembroke , Plymouth , Plympton , Quincy , Randolph , Rockland , Sandwich , Scituate , Taunton , Wareham , Weymouth , Whitman