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Does Minimally Invasive Surgery Speed Up Recovery after Total Hip Replacement?

Posted on: 06/24/2005
Smaller incisions for total hip surgery are the latest trend in orthopedics. This is called minimally invasive arthroplasty (MIA). But some doctors are concerned that there isn't enough proof to support the safety of this method. There's even a question whether MIA is of greater benefit to the patient or marketing boon for the surgeon.

In this study patients with a MIA were compared to patients having the standard surgery for hip replacement. Measures included how long the operation took, length of hospital stay, and amount of blood loss. These are the main measures because the belief is that there is less tissue trauma and bleeding with smaller incisions.

The results of this study confirmed less blood loss in the MIA group. There were also fewer patients in this group who limped at six weeks. There were no other differences noted. Everyone was the same by the end of one year. This last finding is the same as the results after one year in other studies.

This study shows that the minimally invasive method of total hip replacement is safe. Long-term results are not sacrificed for short-term gains with MIA.

George F. Chimento, MD, et al. Minimally Invasive Total Hip Arthroplasty. In The Journal of Arthroplasty. February 2005. Vol. 20. No. 2. Pp. 139-144.

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