There are many different treatments for hip fractures that largely depend upon the type of fracture.
The “hip” is a ball-and-socket joint. It allows the upper leg to bend and rotate at the pelvis.
An injury to the socket, or acetabulum, itself is not considered a “hip fracture.” Management of fractures to the socket is a completely different consideration.
Causes & Symptoms
Hip fractures most commonly occur from a fall or from a direct blow to the side of the hip. Some medical conditions such as osteoporosis, cancer, or stress injuries can weaken the bone and make the hip more susceptible to breaking. In severe cases, it is possible for the hip to break with the patient merely standing on the leg and twisting.
The patient with a hip fracture will have pain over the outer upper thigh or in the groin. There will be significant discomfort with any attempt to flex or rotate the hip.
If the bone has been weakened by disease (such as a stress injury or cancer), the patient may notice aching in the groin or thigh area for a period of time before the break. If the bone is completely broken, the leg may appear to be shorter than the noninjured leg. The patient will often hold the injured leg in a still position with the foot and knee turned outward (external rotation).
The complication rate after arthroscopic surgery is very low. If complications occur, they are usually minor and are treated easily.
Possible postoperative problems with knee arthroscopy include:
- Blood clots
- Knee stiffness
- Accumulation of blood in the knee
After surgery, you will be moved to the recovery room and should be able to go home within 1 or 2 hours. Be sure to have someone with you to drive you home and check on you that first evening. While recovery from knee arthroscopy is faster than recovery from traditional open knee surgery, it is important to follow your instructions carefully after you return home.
After surgery, you will feel some pain. This is a natural part of the healing process. Your doctor and nurses will work to reduce your pain, which can help you recover from surgery faster. Medications are often prescribed for short-term pain relief after surgery. Many types of medicines are available to help manage pain, including opioids, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and local anaesthetics. A combination of these medications may improve pain relief, as well as minimise the need for opioids.
Be aware that although opioids help relieve pain after surgery, they are a narcotic and can be addictive. It is important to use opioids only as directed by your doctor. As soon as your pain begins to improve, stop taking opioids. Talk to the orthopaedic team if your pain has not begun to improve within a few days of your surgery.
In addition to medicines for pain relief, you may also be recommended medication such as aspirin, clexane or Xarelto to lessen the risk of blood clots.
Keep your leg elevated as much as possible for the first few days after surgery. Apply ice as recommended by your doctor to relieve swelling and pain.
You will leave the hospital with a dressing covering your knee. Keep your incisions clean and dry. Instructions will be given which will tell you when you can shower or bathe, and when you should change the dressing (usually 1 week). The orthopaedic team will see you in the office a few days after surgery to check your progress, review the surgical findings, and begin your postoperative treatment program.
Many patients need crutches or other assistance after arthroscopic surgery. In most cases you will be able to weight bear. If thing differ, Dr Hutabarat will tell you when it is safe to put weight on your foot and leg. If you have any questions about bearing weight, please call the hospital or the rooms.
You should exercise your knee regularly for several weeks after surgery. This will restore motion and strengthen the muscles of your leg and knee. Therapeutic exercise will play an important role in how well you recover. A formal physical therapy program may improve your final result.
Dr Hutabarat will discuss with you when you may drive. Typically, patients are able to drive from <1 to 3 weeks after the procedure.
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