The Direct Anterior approach for the total hip replacement is a minimally invasive technique. The technique allows the procedure through moving the muscles and tissues along their natural plane. In other words, there is no need for the tendons to be detached. A 2018 literature review from the Journal of the Missouri State Medical Association found many advantages to the Direct Anterior approach.*
Patients in the reviewed studies showed that those who had the Direct Anterior approach were mobile earlier than patients with other approaches to a hip replacement. This includes discontinuing the use of an assistive device with walking, using the stairs, and walking a minimum of 6 blocks.
Some studies have shown patients with the Direct Anterior approach hip replacement to have a shorted hospital stay. Therefore, the patient has a reduced risk of contracting a hospital-based infection as well as lowering the costs of the hospital stay.
Many studies show reveal that the Direct Anterior approach had fewer cases of post-operative dislocation. Compared to the precautions required for other surgical approaches, there was less need for hip abduction pillows or following the precautions at all.
Direct Anterior approach patients are more likely to be discharged to home according to the studies. Firstly, rehabilitation facilities are more costly for extended care. Secondly, if patients can move safely and not need heavy narcotics, it is easier to recover at home.
According the the reviewed studies, patients who had the Direct Anterior approach reports less post-operative pain. Likewise, less patients required prolonged use of narcotics and moved better immediately after surgery.
Dr. Heekin and Dr. Kim are experienced in the Direct Anterior approach to the total hip replacement. Every patient is unique. Therefore, the experts at the Heekin Clinic can determine what approach is best for you. Contact the office today to schedule a consultation.
* Galakatos GR. Direct Anterior Total Hip Arthroplasty. Mo Med. 2018;115(6):537–541.