Why Consider Hip or Knee Replacement? According to the American College of Rheumatology, approximately 790,000 total knee replacements and over 450,000 hip replacements are performed annually in the United States. Hip and knee replacement are surgical procedures in which an arthritic, worn out, and painful joint is replaced with metal and plastic. Symptoms of an arthritic hip joint are groin pain or deep pain in the back of the hip. An arthritic knee can cause pain at either side of the knee, and sometimes in the front or back of the knee. Pain is most noticeable when taking the morning’s first few steps, getting in and out of a car, and after long walks or heavy activity. Not long after surgery, patients partake in all of the activities they previously enjoyed without experiencing pain.

What To Do if You Think Your Activity Is Limited by Hip or Knee Arthritis? The first step is to schedule an evaluation by an orthopaedic surgeon, who will take your history, examine your joints, and review your X-rays to determine if a joint replacement may help you. Many patients return home on the same day following their surgery. Most patients require a walker briefly after surgery, with a goal to return to full function without limitations or pain.

What’s New in Hip and Knee Replacement? Orthopaedic surgery is a dynamic field with continuous advancements in techniques and technologies to reduce pain, speed recovery, and improve the patient experience. There are many effective and successful methods involved in a surgical approach to the hip joint. One innovation is the development of a modified anterior approach to the hip, in which the surgery is performed without cutting any muscle tissue or tendons, resulting in faster recovery and less pain. Approaching the hip from the front also results in less chance of a painful post-operative hip dislocation, which can sometimes require surgery to fix.

A powerful new technique in total knee replacement has come from the development of robotic assisted surgery. Rather than using cumbersome alignment jigs to help cut the bone to implant the new knee components, a robotic arm guides the bone saw to make precise cuts. This tool allows the surgery to be performed virtually before the actual procedure, and adjustments to the position of the new components can be tailored to each patients’ anatomy. This helps correct bowed or knock knees and also helps the new knee feel more natural and move more freely.

Dr. Christopher Mutty is an orthopaedic surgeon with UBMD Orthopaedics and Sports medicine who specializes in hip and knee replacement. Dr. Mutty grew up in Olean, NY as the son of an orthopaedic surgeon. Originally an engineer, Dr. Mutty attended UB medical school, completed his orthopaedic residency in hip and knee replacement under Drs. Kenneth Krackow and Matthew Phillips of Buffalo. He completed a trauma orthopaedic fellowship at North Carolina’s Wake Forest University, and has been practicing for 16 years. Call 716-898-3944 to make an appointment with Dr. Mutty. Learn more at https://ubortho.com/teams/christopher-e-mutty-md.