Q:

Is an anterior or posterior approach better for total hip replacement?

A:

Quick Answer

The anterior total hip surgery procedure is reported by Sutter Health to be the best procedure for total hip surgery. The anterior procedure has been proven to have the fastest recovery time and uses the most minimal incision, which causes less damage to tissues around the hip.

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Full Answer

The anterior hip surgery procedure uses an incision that accesses the hip joint from the side of the body rather than through the buttocks area as the posterior surgery method requires, as stated by Sutter Health. This type of incision causes less trauma and damage to tissues around the hip since it has to go through less tissue to access the hip joint.

With the anterior method, a surgeon is able to simply move around the muscle tissues, which leaves the muscles to remain strong enough to support the hip joint and leads to lower risk of dislocating the prosthesis, as reported by Sutter Health.

Although many benefits of anterior hip surgery are reported, it may also have a greater risk of nerve damage since the nerve that supplies sensation to the front and side of the thigh is left vulnerable during surgery. Other precautions found from the anterior method is that component positioning, sizing and stability are more likely to be compromised since the femur during this procedure is difficult to visualize, states Holy Cross Leone Center.

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