What Is Hip Preservation?

The conversations surrounding hip preservation are becoming more mainstream in the field of orthopedics.  There are several perspectives and viewpoints from the top doctors that are well received amongst the general orthopedic community. Old age hip preservation thinking was based upon old adults needing a hip replacement.  Today, hip preservation has risen to the forefront, as an increasing number of young adults are looking to alleviate hip pain early and restore function and kinematics all while reducing pain.  

Hip preservation is essentially a surgical intervention, which defers or inhibits the onset of arthritis or the eventual need for a hip replacement. Decades ago, old adults, battling the crippling signs of aging, such as osteoporosis or osteomalacia, opted for surgical procedures concerning their hip joints. In this day and age, due to malnutrition, improper posture, or even extreme hip motions, such as playing hockey, football, or gymnastics, can wreak havoc on a young adult’s bone health.Individuals with femoroacetabular impingement, also known as FAI, can develop this condition by either engaging in excessive extreme motions or can be born with hips that inherently have an abnormal shape.

If left untreated, this deformity can lead to the progression of an early hip replacement. There are, however, specialist physicians who specialize in the setting of developmental, congenital, and acquired hip deformities, as it’s better to treat them than prolong the process. The intention and purpose of this surgical intervention are primarily to preserve the lining of the joint in a stable condition and avoid the unfortunate need for a hip replacement.  Patients will often come to these conclusions after experiencing painful and recurring symptoms and getting help at the appropriate time is critical to preserving the hip.

The Symptoms

Comprehending and figuring out the symptoms is highly important, as otherwise, individuals can have quite painful and rapid labral or bone deterioration.  The symptoms of FAI are inclusive of hip pain while indulging in twisting activities such as athletics, pain while getting out and in a car, pain while wearing socks and shoes, and pain while standing up from a seated posture or position. This sort of pain can also occur due to being seated for a prolonged period or after any kind of demanding athletic activity. As a consequence, the individual’s range of motions can become limited and can also lead to difficulty in sitting with crossed legs.

The Diagnosis

In an effort to bring these symptoms to a lasting end, individuals are recommended to consult Dr. Presley Swann and his hip preservation center, as these centers can diagnose, can guide, and can administer the relevant interventions, to prevent any extreme scenarios. Harnessing a combination of physical examination, medical history, and imaging, a hip preservation center based in Denver can easily detect any underlying or prevalent problem.

Through an X-Ray, the practitioners can present the initial measurements. While, a CT scan, will enable them to gain a comprehensive perspective through a three-dimensional structure of the hip. An MRI, will, on the other hand, detect any present lesions, e.g., cartilage damage or labral tears, which are typically linked with FAI.  MRIs can also be used to create complex 3D rendering models of the hip to show motion simulations.  Moreover, it is also possible for a physician to administer an injection of cortisone to determine whether the pain is originating from the joint or any other area.

A Suitable Intervention

Opting for a suitable surgical intervention is often necessary to prevent the onset of arthritis or eliminate the need for hip replacement surgery.  Several centers use arthroscopic techniques to combat FAI. This procedure is inclusive of using minimally invasive incisions to deal with hip disorder, which includes bony abnormalities and the presence of soft tissues. This intervention can be highly beneficial for relieving pain while simultaneously preserving the hip joint and its function. Taking only a few hours and leading the patient to be on crutches for three to four weeks, the process can help the patient return to their sport or full activity level within a time frame of four to six months.