A better fit with hip surgery replacement parts

Published: Jun. 10, 2020 at 9:59 AM EDT
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(06/10/2020) -- It’s a new method of hip surgery which is getting patients up and walking the same day. Conformis hip surgery utilizes a patient-specific 3D design which is then sent to engineers and molded from titanium alloy. For some patients in the past, ‘off the shelf’ hips were not always an exact fit, and sometimes caused painful dislocation, unlike this high-tech hip option.

Both of Ralph Dizzine’s hips wore out last fall.

He couldn’t put his shoes and socks on, much less tend to his 50 acres of land.

“I wouldn’t climb up on farm equipment, I had a problem getting off of farm equipment, or off a four-wheeler,” Ralph Dizzine shared with Ivanhoe.

It was clear that Ralph needed two new hips.

Ralph opted for the new 3D surgery because traditional hip replacement had long used, ‘off the shelf’ hip joints.

Terry Clyburn, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at Houston Methodist Hospital illustrated, “It would be like going to a shoe store that had only four or five sizes of shoes.”

If the replacement hip is a few millimeters off, it can lead to a complication called dislocation.

So, Dr. Clyburn recommended that Ralph undergo the new 3D hip surgery.

“You can actually produce a three-dimensional computer model of the hip and you can see it from all directions. Then, you can see exactly what you need to do to make that hip perfect,” Dr. Clyburn explained.

The 3D computer imaging and production of the replacement hip come with guides.

“The devices that guide us to put them in properly, help us to put them in exactly the way they need to be put in, to get a good result,” Dr. Clyburn elaborated.

Ralph had both hips replaced in a morning surgery and by that afternoon…

“I was able to get up and I was able to climb stairs, walk downstairs, walk 2-3,000 feet without the aid of a cane,” Dizzine recalled.

Each year in the United States there are 300,000 hip surgeries because these large joints wear out, causing pain and frequently limping.

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