What is the Anterior Approach?
The Anterior Approach allows the surgeon to reach the hip joint from the front of the hip as opposed to the lateral (side) or the posterior (back) approach. This way, the hip can be replaced without detachment of muscle from the pelvis or femur during surgery. The surgeon can simply work through the natural interval between the muscles. The most important muscles for hip function, the gluteal muscles that attach to the pelvis and femur, are left undisturbed and, therefore, do not require a healing process.
How is Patient Recovery Improved?
Conventional lateral or posterior surgery typically requires strict precautions for the patient. Most patients must limit hip motion for 6 to 8 weeks after surgery. They must limit flexing of the hip to no more than 60 or 90 degrees which complicates normal activities like sitting in a chair, on a toilet seat, putting on shoes or getting into a car. Simply climbing stairs may also be more difficult during recovery.
The Anterior Approach allows patients to immediately bend their hip freely and bear full weight when comfortable, resulting in a more rapid return to normal function. After surgery, they’re instructed to use their hip normally without cumbersome restrictions. In supervised therapy, patients to up and down stairs before their hospital release.
A Special Table Aids The Surgeon
The technologically advanced hana® table is used for the anterior approach. It works with the surgeon to minimize trauma under the skin by precise patient positioning not possible with conventional tables. For example, the patient’s leg is extended downward to allow frontal access to the hip with minimum tissue damage. It also allows for x-ray imaging during surgery to more accurately control implant placement and leg length.
Patient Benefits From The Anterior Approach
Many people suffering with arthritis, hip pain and stiffness can now choose anterior hip replacement surgery. One of the least invasive surgical options, Anterior Hip Replacement using the hana® table allows our surgeons to replace the hip without cutting leg and gluteal muscles. This means a faster, easier recovery for most people.