Major surgeries like a hip replacement come with a lot of questions.
How long will the procedure take?
What’s the timeline for recovery?
Will it be successful?
Your surgeon will likely have answers for all of them. But there is one question that won’t be answered until you start your recovery:
Will my legs be uneven?
Maybe. Let’s dive into that question to see why the answer is uncertain.
What happens during a hip replacement surgery?
A hip replacement, or total hip arthroplasty, involves removing the hip joint and replacing it with an artificial joint. It helps relieves hip pain and restores functionality for most patients.
How could the procedure change the length of my leg?
Joint damage from arthritis, in its many forms, is one of the most common reasons patients receive hip replacements. Arthritis is a degenerative disease. Cartilage, tendons, and even bones break down and wear away within the joint. During the procedure, the surgeon aims to restore the joint to its pre-disease dimensions. In many cases the pre-disease leg was a longer leg.
Will my surgeon make sure my legs are even during surgery?
Equal leg length is a goal during hip replacement surgery but it’s not the top priority. Stability often trumps the importance of even leg lengths. If the surgeon only focused on matching leg lengths, your legs may be even, but the soft tissues may be too loose to hold the joint in place. In that case you could dislocate your leg every time you sit down, leading to yet another expensive and painful surgery and recovery process.
While you may come out of surgery with one leg slightly longer than the other, your surgeon will work very hard to make sure it’s a stable and secure joint that provides pain relief.
What do I do if my legs are uneven?
Uneven legs, a condition more commonly referred to as a leg length discrepancy, are simple to treat. You have to find an external way to even them out. An easy way to do this is with a heel lift. Place the insert in the shoe of the shorter leg to restore balance and relieve pain and soreness.
Our Adjust-A-Lift® Heel Lift is unique due to its three layers that adjust to your individual leg length deficiency. It’s adjustable, high quality, and affordable. Learn more about the Adjust-A-Lift® and order yours online today.