Hip preservation is an exciting new subspecialty within orthopedics that aims to correctly diagnose and treat non-arthritic hip conditions.
It helps patients return to their active lifestyle as quickly as possible.These treatment options also often involve minimally invasive procedures and, in some cases, reduce the need for more extensive surgeries like hip replacements.
We spoke with Mahmoud Almasri, MD, of Mercy Health – Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Institute, Kenwood about why someone would seek out hip preservation.
“Patients generally present with activity-related or position-related pain and discomfort in the hip joint,” he shares. “To them it can feel like sharp pain, stiffness, clicking, grinding or popping. Some may have weakness and find that their hip gives out.”
He also adds that symptoms can occur during daily activities such as prolonged sitting, walking as well as climbing up and down stairs. Severe symptoms may progress to limit recreational activities as well as simple activities of daily living.
The most common hip preservation technique is hip arthroscopy.
During this procedure small incisions are made in the hip. Surgeons, like Dr. Almasri, use special equipment to see and repair any structural soft tissue damage that may exist within the hip. It also allows them to correct any underlying bone impingement issues that are causing soft tissue, cartilage or labrum damage.
The main goals of hip preservation treatment are to reduce pain, improve the patient’s quality of life and to return them to their active lifestyle. Research has shown that quality of life after hip arthroscopy significantly improves within weeks of surgery and continue to improve monthly in the first year.
“Recovery usually involves the use of crutches to protect weight bearing for two to three weeks during the initial healing period from surgery,” Dr. Almasri says. “Surgery is minimally invasive and preserves the patient’s own tissue. It usually involves only two to three key-hole incisions around the hip. On average, patients experience the greatest reduction in pain within the first two weeks, with an upward trajectory of improvement every month with maximum gains at six months.”
Patients from nearly all ages may benefit from hip preservation treatment. Those with non-arthritic hip disorders generally fall into three categories:
- Adolescent and athletic hip disorders: Ages 12 to 40, includes labral tears, hip impingement and residual hip dysplasia
- Weekend warriors and active middle-aged persons: Ages 40 to 70, includes under-treated or previously silent hip impingement that has progressively worsened. This often leads to both anterior hip pain from a labral tear and lateral hip pain due to abductor muscle and tendon disorders
- The elderly: Ages 70-plus, includes mostly lateral-sided hip pain, termed GTPS, causing bursitis and high-grade tears of the abductor muscles/tendons. Also includes buttock pain due to proximal hamstring disorders, or referred pain from the spine or sacro-iliac joint
Additionally, femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) is a condition in which the ball and socket of the hip has a poor fit and can lead to hip arthritis at a younger age. Dr. Almasri decided to dedicate his surgical training and research on FAI and hip arthroscopy.
“I learned how this condition was, for many decades, misdiagnosed and under-treated,” he shares.
The team at Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Institute, Kenwood combines the expertise of a wide variety of health care professionals including orthopedic surgeons, rehabilitation specialists, radiologists, sports psychologists, pelvic health therapists, injection specialists as well as a multitude of musculoskeletal experts and clinical researchers in a single center. This way, patients benefit from a coordinated treatment experience.
“We aim to be the key opinion leaders regionally in the treatment of hip disorders,” Dr. Almasri says. “We also look to be national leaders in the education and training of future doctors who aim to incorporate hip preservation into their practice.”
If you are experiencing hip joint pain, it may be time to see one of our experts in hip preservation. Acting now may decrease your chances of needing more invasive surgery in the future. Our hip specialists in Cincinnati utilize proven preservation options to treat a broad range of hip conditions that can occur at any stage of life.
Make an appointment with Dr. Almasri by calling 513-347-9999 or booking online.