An open reduction and internal fixation of the hip is one method doctors use to repair broken hips. According to Nursingconsult.com, the procedure begins with the doctor or surgeon making an incision to access and repair the bone. The procedure is called open reduction because the incision opens the area, and reduction is the process of setting a bone. Internal fixation refers to the hardware used to stabilize the hip.
Winchester Hospital explains that such procedures are generally performed while the patient is under a general anesthesia. This is done to avoid the pain and stress of an open surgery. The patient is usually prescribed medication to alleviate post-surgical pain. After the doctor has opened the hip area and set the bones, screws, plates, rods or pins are often used to fix them in place. After the hardware is in place, the wound is sutured closed. The last step in the process includes dressing the wound and sometimes the application of a cast.
Each year, approximately 250,000 people in the United States break a hip. The vast majority of patients who present with a hip fracture are treated successfully with surgery. Complications are possible from this surgery, so be sure to inform your doctor if you may be pregnant, have a history of blood clots or have a family history of anesthetic complications.