Hip Arthroscopy – Faster Recovery, Less Pain

From an interview with
Dr. Jeremy McCallum
McLeod Orthopaedics Seacoast

With hip pain, a minimally invasive surgical technique can help diagnose the problem and, even, treat it.  McLeod Orthopedic Specialist Dr. Jeremy McCallum explains.

Here’s a summary of Dr. McCallum’s comments:
Hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgery, using camera and long working utensils, to address hip problems in both young and old people who do not have severe degenerative changes of the hip, but have debilitating hip pain. This problem can be caused 1)  by the socket being too deep, 2) from the ball of the femoral head not being completely round, 3) from the socket being too shallow or 4) from muscle and tendon issues. All these can be addressed with arthroscopy of the hip.
This is typically done through three or two very small holes in the thigh about a quarter inch. This is done as an outpatient. Patients come in in the morning. The surgery takes approximately two hours.  Then, the patient goes home that evening with pain control medication.
There are many hip conditions that can be treated with hip arthroscopy. The main problem is called hip impingement. The hip is a ball and socket joint. As you flex and rotate your hip, you can feel pain when your socket is too deep or if your ball is not quite round. The bones can pinch and they’re pinching a gasket called the labrum that surrounds the hip and creates a suction seal. The suction seal is very important both for hip function and stability. Over time, this continued pinching can cause some degeneration or tearing of the cartilage. This can lead to hip pain and disability.
So, the advantage of the hip arthroscopy is that it’s minimally invasive, recovery time is faster, and we’re now able to address types of pathology and return athletes to sports and treat patients who we have not previously been able to help.

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