Combating Bone Density Loss after Hip Replacement Surgery

by Jsantos, September 10, 2013

Combating Bone Density Loss after Hip Replacement Surgery

Hip replacement surgery is necessary for a wide range of different injuries and conditions. The most common reason is arthritis, but it can also be done in situations where the patient has fallen and seriously broken the hip. Hip replacement surgery offers a stable, long-term solution to pain and loss of movement, and most hip replacements are able to last 20 years or more, according to WebMD. However, there are many different potential complications from this type of surgery, including bone density loss. Bone density loss can make the bone around the hip joint thin and brittle, leading to further breakage and other concerns. What should you know?

Hormone Replacement Therapy

Hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, is commonly used to combat osteoporosis in men and women. With 20 million Americans suffering from osteoporosis and low bone density, this has become one of the most common solutions. However, if your bone density loss is not due to osteoporosis, HRT may not have the desired effect. You will need to speak with your orthopedic doctor concerning his or her recommended course of action.

Drug Treatment

A number of prescription drugs have been developed to combat bone density loss. In many situations, these medications are able to not only halt further loss, but reverse the condition and build In between representatives of sign there are many workagolics, but, as a rule, they steep into work with purpose to escape the real world. greater bone density. Medications on the market include bisphosonates, raloxifene, calcitonin, tamoxifen and statins. However, each medication comes with its own potential side effects, and you should only take a prescription medication if ordered by your doctor. Potential side effects of bone density drugs include hot flashes, increased cancer risks, muscle inflammation and reversible liver damage.

Diet and Nutrition

Often, the body’s loss of bone density can be slowed, stopped or even reversed with the right diet and nutrition. It’s important that any patient who has undergone a total hip replacement eat a diet rich in vitamin D and vitamin K. Vitamin D plays an essential role in the body’s absorption and use of calcium. Obviously, with low vitamin D intake, your body is at a disadvantage when it comes to combating bone density loss.

Vitamin K plays a role in binding calcium to the bone matrix, as well as in forming osteocalcin, a bone protein. Patients with low vitamin K intake will have a much greater chance for ongoing bone density loss, both before and after hip replacement surgery.

Weight Loss and Exercise

Weight loss can have profound effects on every aspect of the body. However, when it comes to bone density, the manner of weight loss you choose can be very important. For patients losing weight, it’s important to choose the right method – bone density tends to decrease as body weight decreases. This is particularly true with weight loss methods that don’t involve eating a healthy diet and getting physical exercise (standard “dieting” as well as weight loss due to aging).

Patients should engage in exercise that builds muscle mass. As muscle mass increases, bone density also increases. It should be noted that patients building muscle mass will generally experience only a moderate reduction in overall weight, but can experience a significant reduction in size. Both strength training and weight bearing exercises are recommended. However, patients who have gone through hip replacement surgery should speak with their doctor and follow his or her advice on the types and frequency of exercise.

Lifestyle Choices

Many lifestyle choices can foster a loss of bone density, even in patients without a hip replacement. Smoking and drinking alcohol are two notable lifestyle choices that have significant effects on bone density.

Bone density loss doesn’t have to be your fate. There are numerous ways to combat this after your hip replacement.






Surgeon’s Advice | Leon Mead MD Orthopedic Doctor | 730 Goodlette Road North, Suite 201  Naples Florida 34102 | Phone: (239) 262-1119


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