Noosa Hospital
Part of Ramsay Health Care

News

New lease of life for people suffering osteoarthritis

Nov 03, 2016

A world-class surgical technique now being offered at Noosa Hospital is providing rapid recovery and a new lease of life to people suffering crippling osteoarthritis of the hip.

Rather than having to travel to Brisbane for treatment, patients can undergo surgery close to home and be back on their feet the same day. That is thanks to the use of a traction table that allows surgeons to replace the hip joint via a three-inch cut in the front of the torso (anterior hip replacement) rather than having to cut through muscles at the back of the leg.

Noosa Hospital surgeon Dr Andries Ferreira said the surgery improved quality of life, relieving pain better and enabling sufferers to sleep and re-engage with physical activity.

“You basically are an invalid from the disease, Dr Ferreira said. “Twenty years ago knee and hip replacements were rare, but are now increasingly common among older people wanting to enjoy a longer, more active life. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease and is the most common chronic condition of the joints. It occurs when the cartilage between joints breaks down leading to pain, stiffness and swelling.

Alexandra Headland resident John Anderson knows how life-changing the surgical technique can be. Before he was treated, he could not sit for longer than ten minutes because of the pain. After ten years of annual cortisone injections which were becoming less and less effective, he passed 60 and decided to do something about it.

He booked in for his hip replacement with Dr Ferreira at Noosa Hospital and walked out of Noosa Hospital after four days with a brand new left hip. “I virtually walked through my recovery,” Mr Anderson said. “I feel like I’ve won the lottery. Now I’m swimming, walking long distances and feeling no pain.”