One of the largest joints in the body, the hip is a ball-and-socket joint, which is formed by the ball of the thighbone and the socket of the pelvis (acetabulum). Ligaments connect the components of the joint together and provide stability during movement. Both the ball and socket are covered with cartilage, a smooth tissue that acts a cushion and protects the bones during movement. Because of the constant stress the hip joint is under naturally, it is prone to developing degenerative diseases, such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis is the leading cause of hip pain in patients over the age of 50, and usually only affects one joint, such as only the right hip joint. As the disease develops, the cartilage that cushions the hip joint wears away and patients will experience increasing pain and stiffness, as well as a decrease in range of motion.
Mostly affecting women, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that affects patients of all ages, and often develops in both the left and right hip joints. As rheumatoid arthritis progresses, it causes increasing inflammation, cartilage deterioration, and damage to the bone surfaces.
During the early stages of arthritis of the hip, Dr. Biggs will often recommend a custom conservative treatment plan to relieve pain and slow the disease’s progression. The treatment plan may include treatments such as:
Patients suffering from advanced osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis often receive the greatest relief of pain symptoms from total hip replacement or hip resurfacing. Total hip replacement involves the complete removal and replacement of the hip joint with a prosthetic implant.
Patients under the age of 65, and those who have good bone quality, will often benefit most from hip resurfacing. Dissimilar from total hip replacement, hip resurfacing involves the removal of only the damaged or diseased areas of the joint. During a hip resurfacing procedure, minimally invasive surgical techniques, such as arthroscopy, are used to:
Dr. Biggs will often utilize minimally invasive surgical techniques, because they increase the accuracy of placing the implant. After Dr. Biggs has secured the metal covering, he will then remove and replace the diseased socket with a metal and plastic prosthetic implant.
By reshaping (instead of removing) the joint components, hip resurfacing allows for the preservation of more of the healthy bone of the hip joint than is possible during total hip replacement surgery.
The advantages of hip resurfacing, in comparison to traditional total hip replacement, include:
Board-certified orthopedic surgeon Dr. H. Kurtis Biggs, brings experience to South Florida through the thousands of joint replacements he has performed. He completed an orthopedic surgeon residency and a fellowship in joint replacement at the world renowned Cleveland Clinic, and specializes in using minimally invasive solutions as much as possible. As the founder and lead surgeon of the Joint Replacement Institute in Naples, Dr. Biggs is dedicated to providing personalize and state-of-the-art orthopedic care to help patients return to their active lifestyles.
Learn more about Dr. Biggs and how to make an appointment at his Naples, Florida, office »