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Is Less-Invasive Hip Replacement Best for You?

Finding the right surgeon and asking the right questions can help determine if minimally invasive hip replacement is right for you.

WebMD Feature

Reviewed By Michael Smith

Less cutting sounds like a good thing when it comes to hip replacement. But experts say knowing the right questions to ask is key to determining if this new technique is for you.

Research recently presented at a meeting of orthopaedic specialists shows that patients often fare no better with minimally invasive hip replacement than those having a standard hip replacement -- and may do worse.

Proponents of minimally invasive hip replacement say small-incision operations can lessen blood loss, ease post-operative pain, trim hospital stays, improve scar appearance, and speed healing. In the hands of properly trained surgeons, they say, patients can expect benefits that were once unimaginable.

Richard A. Berger, MD, who refined the technique, says most of his patients go home the same day as surgery and can walk without crutches within eight days. He says his technique steers clear of muscle and tendon damage during surgery. Berger is assistant professor at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center in Chicago.


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