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What is it?
Hemiarthroplasty is a surgical procedure that is performed to replace half of the hip joint with a prosthetic, leaving the other half as it is. Hemi actually means half while arthroplasty is a joint replacement. In a hemiarthroplasty, the surgeon actually replaces the femoral head that allows the hip to move as the position of the leg changes. It is usually performed for treating a fractured hip. It can also help in treating hips that were damaged by arthritis.

Hemiarthroplasty Bipolar is the type of Hemiarthroplasty that uses a femoral head that can swivel while moving, reducing the wear and tear on the new joint and helping the prosthetic to last longer.

A hemiarthroplasty surgical procedure generally takes lesser time and the loss of blood is lesser than total Hip replacement surgery. Hemiarthroplasty is generally performed right after a fall or an injury that causes a hip fracture. The patient might be hospitalized for a couple of days before the procedure.

Procedure
The patient will be administered either of the following anesthesia,

  • General Anesthesia to make the patient unconscious throughout the procedures, or,
  • Local Anesthesia to make the legs numb while keeping the patient awake the whole time.

The surgeon will then create an incision on the side of the thigh near the hip. When the surgeon can see the joint, the femoral head will be removed from the acetabulum. The ball and socket are kept in place by a network of ligaments, tendons, and muscles. The femoral head will also be detached from the rest of the femur and the inside of the femur is hollowed out, placing a metal stem inside it.

The surgeon will then place a prosthetic femoral head securely on the stem, which can be attached to another head, lined with plastic. This head within a head is called the bipolar prosthesis.

Now, the surgeon will stitch the incision and bandage it. A drain might be used to drain any minimal bleeding.

Post Procedure

The doctor might prescribe pain medications after the procedure, to be used only when required. The patient might be recommended to begin physical therapy while recuperating in the hospital, which has to be continued even after being discharged from the hospital. The period of physical therapy will depend on a couple of factors, including, patient’s age and overall fitness.

The patient will have to follow some preventive measures, including,

  • Avoid heavy lifting and climbing
  • Limit playing running-related sports
  • Perform less-impact exercises that will help your all-around health

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