Hip Surgery, Knee Surgery, Orthopedic Surgery, Pain Management

November 28, 2018

Treatment Options for Arthritis of the Hip & Knee


There are several ways to treat arthritis of the hip and knee, from medications and physical therapy to minimally invasive surgeries and total joint replacement.

Nonsurgical Treatments for Arthritis

Before surgery is required, there are several treatments that can help manage your hip or knee arthritis.

Nonsurgical treatment options for arthritis include:

  • Weight loss
  • Wearing supportive braces
  • NSAIDs, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
    • Oral (Ibuprofen, Aleve, Meloxicam, Celebrex)
    • Topical (Pennsaid, Voltaren)
  • Supplements that support bone health and increase lubrication of the joints
  • Exercise and therapy
    • Physical therapy to improve muscle strength and range of motion
    • Occupational therapy to help you learn how to do your regular activities comfortably
  • Injections

Surgical Treatments for Arthritis

When nonsurgical options no longer effectively treat your arthritis pain, it may be time for a surgical procedure.  Surgical treatment options for arthritis include arthroscopy and total joint arthroplasty.  These procedures can help ease your joint inflammation and relieve joint pain and stiffness.

Hip & Knee Arthroscopy

Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that does not require surgeons to make large cuts in or around your joint.  These smaller cuts lead to a lower risk of complications from surgery, such as infection or excessive bleeding.  In addition, they allow your surgery site to heal faster, resulting in a shorter recovery time.

During arthroscopy, your surgeon inserts a small camera, called an arthroscope, into the affected joint.  The camera displays pictures on a television screen, and your surgeon uses these images to guide miniature surgical instruments.

Total Joint Arthroplasty or Total Joint Replacement

Total joint arthroplasty is a surgical procedure in which the damaged parts of the bones are removed and replaced with metal implants.  A plastic liner is inserted between the metal implants to give the new joint a smooth surface.  This artificial joint is designed to move much like a healthy joint.  This should relieve your pain, restore your range of motion, and help you return to the activities you love.

Total Knee Arthroplasty

Total knee arthroplasty, also called total knee replacement, involves removing and resurfacing all of the damaged bone and cartilage within the joint.  Any healthy bone material is left in place to help the new, artificial components of the joint.

In this procedure, the end surface of the femur and the end surface of the tibia are replaced with metal.  A plastic liner is then inserted between the femur and tibia.

Total Hip Arthroplasty

In total hip arthroplasty, also called total hip replacement, the socket is reamed out and replaced with a metal cup.  The ball of the femur is removed and replaced with a metal implant.  A plastic liner is inserted between the socket and femoral head.

In minimally invasive total hip arthroplasty, an incision is made over the front of the hip.  In traditional surgeries, incisions were made over the side or the back of the hip.  Minimally invasive hip replacement allows surgeons to approach the hip joint directly by going between the muscles surrounding the joint, instead of cutting the muscles and tendons surrounding the hip.  This procedure is designed to reduce the trauma to the tissues surrounding the hip joint, helping shorten recovery times.

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To make an appointment at Arkansas Surgical Hospital’s main facility in North Little Rock, call our Physician Referral Assistance Line at (877) 918-7020.

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