What is Osteonecrosis?
Osteonecrosis is a type of bone disorder which develops in the bone if the blood supply to it gets affected. As the bone does not get sufficient blood the bone cells begin to die and are not regenerated as natural. This leads to gradual destruction of the bone.
Osteonecrosis, also known as ‘avascular necrosis’ and ‘aseptic necrosis’, mostly affects the hip bone in a person, although it can develop in any other bone as well. Most cases show Osteonecrosis in both the hip joints.
What is the cause of Osteonecrosis of the Hip?
If the blood supply to the femoral head is affected, then the hip develops Osteonecrosis. Without sufficient nutrition through the blood the bone of the femur (thigh) begins to die gradually and eventually crumbles. This causes the articular cartilage which covers the hip bones to collapse and cause severe arthritis.
What are the risk factors associated with the development of Osteonecrosis?
Although the exact cause of the disruption in the blood supply to the femoral head is not always known there are various risk factors that can lead to the development of the disorder. These are:
- Injury – Hip fractures, hip dislocation and other severe injuries to the main artery supplying blood to the femoral head and the hip bones.
- Corticosteroid drugs – Many medical disorders require using corticosteroid medications for effective treatment. Research has shown a connection between corticosteroid medication use and development of Osteonecrosis.
- Other Medical Disorders – Various medical conditions, such as diver’s liver (the bends), Gaucher’s disease, sickle cell disease, Crohn’s disease, thrombosis, etc can also lead to the development of Osteonecrosis.
- Alcoholism – Excessive consumption of alcohol has also been found by researchers to be related to the development of Osteonecrosis.
What are the signs and symptoms of Osteonecrosis?
Osteonecrosis is known to evolve into different stages. The first symptom to be felt is usually hip pain which may first start as a dull throbbing ache in the buttock or the groin area. As the disease advances further, the intensity of the pain prevents the patient from using the affected hip while standing or even putting weight on it.
The disease may develop ion intensity in stages which may evolve in months or even a year.
How is Osteonecrosis diagnosed?
The doctor will enquire about the patient’s symptoms and check their medical history as well to understand the cause of the hip pain.
Additional diagnostic tests to confirm the suspicion of Osteonecrosis commonly performed are:
- X-Ray test – These can help the doctor to view the structure of the hip bones and determine the extent of damage to the femoral head.
- MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) test – This is a more extensive imaging test which uses magnetic fields and sound waves to provide detailed images of the bone which help to evaluate the degree of damage suffered by the hip bone.
How is Osteonecrosis treated?
There are various medications that can help alleviate the pain and several aiding devices, such as crutches, that help a person with Osteonecrosis to slow down the symptoms sometimes. However, surgical treatment is considered to be the ideal treatment method for Osteonecrosis of the hip when it is mainly diagnosed it the earlier stages.
These are the several common surgical treatments for Osteonecrosis of the hips:
This surgical procedure for treating Osteonecrosis involves drilling a large hole over several other smaller ones into the femoral head. These progressively larger holes help to ease the pressure in the bone and make new channels for the new blood vessels to supply the hip bone (femoral head).
If the Osteonecrosis of the hip is diagnosed early then an effective core decompression surgery can help to relieve the symptoms and prevent the affected hip bone from getting destroyed.
This surgical procedure is usually combined with bone grafting techniques so new bones can be efficiently regenerated and help in supporting the cartilage in the hip joint. Mostly, the bone graft is taken from the patient’s own body (autograft).
Vascularized Fibula Graft
This is another common surgical treatment for Osteonecrosis of the hips. This surgery involves removing a piece of bone from the patient’s fibula (leg) as well as the connecting artery and veins. The surgeon drills another small hole in the femoral head and neck. These holes are then used to connect the artery and veins of the fibula graft. The new piece of fibula allows the blood supply to be restored to the affected hip areas.
Total Hip Replacement
Total hip replacement is the most ideal and effective surgical treatment for Osteonecrosis. This is mostly performed when the disease has advanced to higher levels and the hip bone has deteriorated to a large extent.
This surgical involves removing the damaged parts of the hip joint and replacing them with artificial implants.
This procedure is found to be most effective in relieving pain in the affected hip joint as well as restoring function to the maximum.
Why choose Travcure for Total Hip Replacement for Osteonecrosis of the Hip in India?
Travcure is the leading medical tourism service provider in India. It is renowned for having the most affordable and convenient treatment packages. Travcure is connected to the world’s largest network of high-quality hospitals and clinics that are specially equipped with advanced and high-tech medical and surgical instruments and technology. Travcure offers every patient with a bespoke treatment package for total hip replacement for Osteonecrosis of the hip in India that is most affordable in cost and most efficient in results.