Best-Rated Arthroscopic Hip Surgeons in NYC
Hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure done to evaluate and treat a wide range of hip conditions. To perform the hip arthroscopy, an orthopedic surgeon makes small pin hole incisions (about 1 centimeter each) around the hip. The doctor will look inside one of the incisions with an arthroscope (a tiny tube with a camera lens and a light source) and repair and/or evaluate the area by going in through the other incisions with small instruments.
Symptoms of Hip Conditions
A wide range of disorders can affect the hips. However, the first sign of a potential hip condition or injury is often a constant dull ache, or a sharp, popping sensation in the hip, groin, thigh or buttock after prolonged sitting or walking.
Management of Hip Conditions
Many patients with hip injuries or hip pain will respond well to conservative treatments such as: rest, over the counter pain medication, physical therapy, and steroid injections. However, some injuries or conditions are not responsive to these measures and further diagnostic testing (like x-rays, MRI, or joint injections) is completed to see if a patient is a good candidate for hip arthroscopy.
Who Needs Hip Arthroscopy?
Hip arthroscopy can be done to treat a number of different injuries and conditions. They include:
- Hip Labral Tear
- Hip Femoracetabular Impingement (FAI)
- Snapping Hip Syndrome
- Loose Bodies in the Hip
- Chondral (Cartilage) Injuries
- Torn Hip Ligaments
- Removal of Adhesions (Scar Tissue Buildup) that can limit movement and cause pain
- Partial removal of inflamed joint linings (Partial Synovectomy)
- Removal of Bone Spurs (Bone Growths) caused by injury or focal cartilage damage
- General evaluation of a patient’s pain or condition
Advantages of Hip Arthroscopy
The advantages of hip arthroscopy over the traditional open hip surgery include:
- Minimally invasive procedure, which result in less scarring and a lower infection rate
- Less trauma to ligaments, muscles, and tissues surrounding the hip
- Less pain and a quicker recovery period
- Earlier mobilization following surgery
The patient is non-weight bearing or partial weight bearing for the immediate post-operative period. This lasts for one or two weeks and there is gradual progression to full weight bearing. Strengthening is started after full ROM is achieved and most patients return to full activity by in or around 3 months.
Following hip arthroscopic surgery, most patients do not experience excessive pain, however, many patients find that they have reflex inhibition and poor muscle firing. Therefore, physical therapy is crucial to a full recovery. Physical therapy helps restore normal hip function and strength. You should be able to return to work within one to two weeks, but the physical therapy will likely continue beyond that time frame. The specific length of rehabilitation will vary from patient to patient.
Physical Therapy for Hip Arthroscopy Recovery
Physical therapy is an area of rehabilitative health care that utilizes special exercises and equipment to help patients regain or improve their physical function. PT is a major part of hip arthroscopy post-operative care, as it helps restore normal hip function, range of motion and strength. Physical therapy will also help ward off pain, normalize gait (a patient’s walking pattern) and restore muscle control over the legs. It will also teach patients how to get around safely with crutches.
Your first physical therapy sessions will likely be three to five days after surgery, however, some patients may meet with their physical therapist before their surgery is even performed. Most patients will have PT one to two times per week until they have fully regained function and strength in their hips. Specific therapeutic exercises performed during PT will vary from patient to patient depending on why the surgery was performed. In general, however, patients recovering from hip arthroscopy will complete the following types of exercises during their sessions:
- Range of motion exercises- The goal of these exercises is to slowly increase a patient’s range of motion while decreasing pain, stiffness and swelling.
- Active assistive range of motion exercises– To complete these exercises, a therapist or a piece of equipment, like a band or strap, helps the patient execute movements that increase range of motion, decrease pain, stiffness and swelling.
- Upper body ergometry (UBE) – An upper-body ergometer is used to build cardiovascular endurance and strength in the upper body. It is commonly used in PT by patients who have lower-body injuries.
- Various strengthening exercises for the legs, gluteus maximus (glutes) and abdominals
Over time patients will build up to more challenging exercises and replicate sport or work- specific movements. Each patient, however, will progress at a different rate, depending on what was done during surgery, their age, pre-injury health status, and rehabilitation compliance.Request an Appointment Now