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Minimally Invasive Hip Replacement

Similarities and differences between minimally invasive anterior and posterior approaches for total hip replacement

Multiple studies have multiple different conclusions. Some say that one approach or the other has better outcomes at various early intervals. Some will show increased complications from one compared to the other at various intervals. Overall, a total hip replacement performed well through either a posterior approach or a direct anterior approach will routinely provide similar, good results.

Please see the videos for patients at three weeks on the website. Prior to the conclusion of the video try to determine which side was operated on, and if the patient had an anterior or posterior approach.

Although all of these risks or complications are small, the primary differences between the anterior and posterior approaches are the post-operative precautions that will be in place for three weeks after the surgery (6 weeks if you have diabetes).

  • The anterior approach has higher wound complications and greater difficulty with healing of the incision than the posterior approach (particularly if there is overhang from the abdomen onto the incisional site).
  • After an anterior approach there will often be an area of numbness along the outside of the hip from the anterior approach that is expected while this is not present from the posterior approach.
  • The overall possibility for nerve or blood vessel damage, dislocation, leg length discrepancy, blood clots, lung or heart complications, mortality, and other less common complications are similar between the approaches.

For more information click here

  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons
  • Arthroscopy Association of North America
  • University of Nebraska Medical Center
  • Stryker
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