901 Boren Avenue, Suite #900, Seattle, WA 98104
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Anterior Approach to Hip Replacement in Seattle, WA

The hip is a ball and socket joint composed of the top of the thighbone and the socket of the pelvis. One of the largest weight bearing joints, the hip endures large amounts of stress during basic movements, such as walking. Damage to the any of the hip components can result in severe pain symptoms that may significantly impact everyday life.

The most common cause of hip pain is osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis, also known as "wear-and-tear" arthritis, is a degenerative joint disease that typically affects patients over the age of 50. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes chronic inflammation in the affected joint. It can affect patients of any age, but women have a much higher risk of developing the disease than men.

As arthritis progresses, the protective cartilage of the joint slowly wears away either due to inflammation or natural friction. This allows for the exposed bone surfaces to rub together, resulting in increasing pain and joint stiffness. Additional symptoms include limited mobility and locking of the joint, and as symptoms progress, patients may be unable to complete even basic tasks. For patients suffering from severe symptoms, Dr. Pritchett will often recommend joint replacement surgery to help patients return to their normal life.

Anterior Approach to Total Hip Replacement

A specialized technique, the anterior approach to total hip replacement decreases pain from hip replacement and allows patients to recover from surgery free from any restrictions on activity. During traditional hip replacement surgery, patients are asked to limit bending their hip joint more than 90 degrees or internally rotating their hip joint more than 30 degrees. Using the anterior approach, Dr. Pritchett will allow and encourage a full range of motion from the very start. Accessing the joint through the front reduces the chance of a hip dislocation to very unlikely.

Benefits of Anterior Hip Replacement

Dr. Pritchett is highly experienced in the usage of the anterior approach when performing hip replacement surgery. In addition, he is dedicated to providing the best and most advanced treatments to his patients. Due to the many benefits of the anterior approach, Dr. Pritchett will use this advanced technique whenever possible. The advantages of the anterior approach include:

Using the anterior approach, patients will often experience a more natural joint movement post-op than those who undergo traditional hip replacement surgery. The more natural feeling is due to the ability to perform an immediate rate of motion that is usually superior to the movement patients have when they present to surgery. There is no need to wait to work on range of motion exercise.. By keeping the muscles intact, joint stability and strength is preserved, which in turn prevents future risk of dislocation.

Anterior Approach to Hip Replacement in Seattle, WA

James W. Pritchett, MD, is a board certified orthopedic surgeon who specializes in the anterior approach to total hip replacement. Dr. Pritchett provides the highest quality and advanced treatment for joint pain relief to patients in the Seattle, Washington area. To learn more about hip replacement surgery, schedule an appointment with Dr. Pritchett at his office - 901 Boren Avenue North, Suite 900.

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Last Modified: July 30, 2014