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Fast track your private hip replacement surgery in Glasgow
If you are considering private hip replacement surgery in Glasgow or have been advised by a consultant that surgery is a sensible option, you will probably have several questions.
This page has been written with help from our consultants at Ross Hall to explain:
Please note that many of the details on this page are specific to Ross Hall Hospital. If you don’t live in or near Glasgow, it is easy to find and contact your local Circle Health Group hospital for rapid access to expert care. Click the ‘Hospitals’ link in the grey bar near the top of this page to locate the Circle hospital near you.
Your hip is a weight-bearing joint, formed by the thighbone (femur) and pelvis. The top part of the femur (known as the head offemur) sits inside the acetabulum, a shallow socket in the pelvis. The hip is a deep joint, surrounded by layers of muscles that help keep it securely in position.
In a healthy hip, the head of the femur can move easily and freely against the surface of the acetabulum due to a lining of articular cartilage on the surface of each bone. This cartilage reduces friction in the joint, allowing the bones to glide smoothly over one another.
When a hip is affected by osteoarthritis, the articular cartilage starts to become worn, causing friction in the joint as it is moved. This friction makes the hip feel stiff and painful.
Over time, as the osteoarthritis progresses, the cartilage may eventually become completely worn, causing the femoral head and acetabulum to start grating directly on one another every time the hip joint is used. This causes severe pain and stiffness and will often cause mobility problems.
When the hip has been damaged this extensively, many non-operative treatments will be less effective and hip replacement surgery may be advised. As the name implies, this operation replaces a natural hip that has been damaged by osteoarthritis with an artificial one (known as an implant).
The new hip joint means that people are able to move around more freely and easily again, without being limited by debilitating pain and stiffness in their hip.
The surgery is normally planned using special orthopaedic templating software and current X-rays or scans. Your consultant uses these to make sure that your implant will be the right size and length for your leg and give you movement that feels natural. (If you don’t have up-to-date scans, these will be arranged for you at Ross Hall by your consultant.)
The surgery may be carried out using a general anaesthetic (meaning you will be fully asleep) or with a spinal anaesthetic (where you are awake, but your legs and pelvis are numb) and sedation. Some people may be better suited to one of these, while others will have personal preferences. You will be able to discuss the different options with an anaesthetist beforehand.
Once you have been taken into the operating theatre at Ross Hall, your pelvis and leg will be covered in sterile drapes and the skin cleaned with the application of a sterile wipe. Your consultant will then make an incision (cut) in the skin to give them access to the hip joint.
They will carefully remove any remaining cartilage from the joint and then position and fix the new artificial socket into the acetabulum. A spike will then be positioned into the femur and a ball placed on top of it. This will become the new ‘ball’ of the artificial ‘ball and socket’ hip implant.
Once the implant has been positioned properly, your consultant will test it and carry out any final adjustments needed to ensure it will be an appropriate match for your natural biomechanics.
The skin will then be carefully closed with sutures and covered with a sterile dressing. The muscles surrounding the hip help to keep the implant securely in position.
Hip replacement surgery will usually take around an hour and half, but exact timings depend on a range of factors.
Once the operation has been done, you will be taken into a dedicated theatre recovery area, where our theatre staff will closely monitor you as the anaesthetic wears off, and you start to wake up more fully.
Once they are happy that you are well enough to return to the ward, you will be taken back to your private room to rest. Your nurse will check in on you at regular intervals, but if you need help with anything at any point, you can use the call button on your bed.
“Hip pain due to arthritis can have a significant effect upon the day-to-day life of our patients. People will often experience restricted mobility due to their symptoms. It can also affect their employment and recreational activities. It has been shown that hip pain can have significant effect on psychosocial aspects.
Hip replacement surgery has been shown to significantly improve their quality of life. Patients generally feel that this surgery has been a life-changing experience."
If you have been struggling with pain or stiffness in your hip due to osteoarthritis, you may have already had some of these non-operative treatments arranged for you through your GP). These include:
If you haven’t already received any type of treatment, your consultant at Ross Hall will discuss suitable options with you to determine the most appropriate treatment(s) for you.
While the non-operative treatments listed above can be very effective at relieving symptoms, they are usually more helpful in the earlier stages of osteoarthritis when the hip joint has not been damaged too extensively.
Where osteoarthritis has progressed and caused more extensive damage to the joint, they often become less effective. When this happens, you may be advised by your consultant to consider hip replacement surgery as the most suitable way to get you out of pain.
If this is the situation you are in, your consultant will discuss the operation with you. They will explain:
This discussion is an important part of the treatment process and is collaborative, meaning you and your consultant will talk through options together.
Your consultant will give you their expert opinion, but the decision to have hip replacement surgery (or not) will always be yours.
Many people find they have some questions at this point, and your consultant will always be very happy to talk through these with you.
Your consultant and physiotherapy team will guide you through your recovery, and it is important that you give yourself adequate time to rest, take any pain relief medication and follow your physiotherapy exercises throughout this time to help promote recovery.
When you first leave Ross Hall, you will probably need to use crutches or a walking aid for the first few weeks to help you move around safely. You will be able to move up and down stairs, use the bathroom and walk around the house, although you may find you are moving slightly slower than normal with these.
You will also be given advice about the best position to sleep during the first few weeks of your recovery.
Hip replacement surgery is a significant operation, and it is normal to feel some pain and discomfort for a while afterwards as you recover and begin to adjust to the new joint.
Painkillers for the first six weeks after surgery will often help to manage any pain, and these will be arranged for you by your consultant at Ross Hall before you are discharged.
After 4 – 6 weeks, most people will find they are able to move around without walking aids, and their pain will often have significantly eased by then.
After 6 weeks, you will be able to return to driving if you are no longer having to use walking aids and your pain is being controlled.
You will also probably be able to return to work at this point (although if you have a job that is very physical, you may need a bit longer to fully recover).
You will always receive written confirmation of the fixed-price fee following your consultation and after any diagnostic tests needed have been carried out.
Here are just five of the main reasons people choose to have their private hip replacement surgery with us:
For your reassurance, when you are first discharged from the ward, you will be given a number to call if you have any concerns at any time.
Post-operative physiotherapy sessions are highly recommended to help you as you recover, and these will be arranged for you here at Ross Hall.
Your consultant will see you for a follow-up appointment about six weeks after your surgery to make sure that your recovery is going as expected. If you have any questions at this time, they will be very happy to discuss them with you.
If you want to know more about hip replacement surgery and find out if it's the right treatment for you, book your appointment online today or call a member of our team directly on 0141 300 5009.
We provide hip replacement surgery in Glasgow for people with private health insurance and those who choose to self-pay to get the help they need sooner.
Whether you have only recently noticed pain and stiffness in your hip and would like some expert advice, or you have been struggling with a hip problem for many years and have been told that hip surgery is now an appropriate option, we are here to help you.
Our Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeons have helped thousands of people in Glasgow to get out of pain and stiffness in their hip and back to better, easier movement once more. They would be delighted to help you too.
We know just how challenging long-term pain and stiffness in the hip can be, and how much it can limit you in so many aspects of life. However, we also know from experience just how helpful and liberating the right treatment can be.
As Mr Patil was quoted as saying previously on this page, hip replacement can be “a life-changing experience.”
If you would like to book a private consultation with one of our hip specialists in Glasgow to discuss hip replacement surgery, you can do so quickly and easily:
When an injury left Alasdair in serious pain, he decided to go private for hip replacement surgery. Find out how Circle Health Group helped him get back on his feet.