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Which surgeon would you choose for your hip surgery?

How do we choose the ‘right’ surgeon to do a hip replacement? If a doctor needs an operation, he is usually in the fortunate position to ask his colleagues who is the ‘go to’ surgeon. They will know who has the the technical and personal skills to do the procedure with the best possible chance of an excellent outcome. They will also know who is busy and highly regarded in his or her field. For those of you who don’t have access to this information, things are a bit more complicated! Lots of surgeons have fancy websites, and these will give you a flavour of a surgeon’s experience and values.

Asking your GP who they would recommend can be helpful, but the nature of general practice has changed a lot over the last few years. Gone are the days when the senior partners knew their hospital doctor colleagues socially and professionally. Many GPs are part-time, or locums and they don’t always know which local surgeons are doing a good job.

Word of mouth is an excellent way of getting information about the right surgeon for you. Some people are happy to go with the flow. They put their trust in a highly regulated system, much like they would do in taking a flight with a reputable airline. One of the greatest benefits of private healthcare is the fact that you have a range of choices – surgeon, hospital and timing of surgery.

I have copied below an article from the AXA website which I hope you will find useful. Please get in touch if you have any questions or need advice.

 

Trying to find an orthopaedic consultant for a planned surgery can sometimes feel like an overwhelming experience. We often feel it is our responsibility to find the ‘best consultant’, and this can cause anxiety. A common sense approach may help you reduce these potential feelings of pressure when choosing a surgeon.

How to choose an orthopaedic surgeon

  • Always ask you general practitioner for the recommendation of a surgeon. Within the local area where you live, a general practitioner will be familiar with surgeons who meet your requirements and your GP will be aware of successful and popular surgeons. Sometimes speaking to family and friends can also help you locate a surgeon who they felt comfortable with.
  • Consider checking for information that is available to members of the public on the National Joint Registry.org.uk website. This website may give invaluable insights on surgeons and hospital profiles for hip replacement outcomes.
  • Ask your private medical insurer to help you locate a number of surgeons. Many insurers will help you find a consultant. At AXA PPP Healthcare, a dedicated team of people will help you with this type of enquiry. This dedicated team of people is known the ‘fast track service’ for finding AXA PPP members a surgeon.
  • Consider choosing consultant that performs surgical work within the National Health Service at centres of Orthopaedic excellence. Your chosen consultant may undertake private surgical work at a private hospital nearby or see National Health Service – private patients.
  • Consider contacting your nearest private hospital to gather names of orthopaedic consultants who have consulting rights at a private hospital in the area in which you live.

The consultation with the surgeon

The consultation with a surgeon can be a daunting experience and many people can feel overwhelmed by the formality of the process, the ‘authority and expertise’ of the specialist and our own feelings of being overwhelmed by our own lack of understanding of what the surgeon may propose. We would always encourage a member to take a list of questions into the consultation with them and to refer to these frequently. It’s always a good idea to go with someone else, who can make notes of what the surgeon has said in response to these asked questions and to ask questions on your behalf if you are feeling overwhelmed. We feel that that following list of questions might be commonly asked in a consultation with a surgeon and for the things that you need to think about.

  • How severe is the osteoarthritis in the hip joint and what is the recommended management for this level of damage?
  • Has the National Joint Registry made any recommendations as to what prosthetic hip replacement device has been suggested in similar case to yours?
  • What are the audited outcomes/results of your work and do you contribute information to the National Joint Registry to help evaluate surgeons, hospital and prosthetic joint performance?
  • How often is revision work carried out from their initial surgery on the hip
  • Do they perform minimally invasive techniques or computer assisted technology for the hip joint replacement (there are newer techniques and prosthetic devices available from many different manufactures).
  • The benefits and risks of the surgery for you as an individual
  • An overview of the surgery and the recovery phase from the surgery
  • Do you feel that you have a good rapport with the surgeon?
  • Do you need to consider a second opinion from another orthopaedic consultant?
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If you would like to discuss your hip treatment options with Jeremy Latham please get in touch…
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Jeremy Latham
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Types of treatments available at Latham Hip Surgery
  • Treatments
  • Hip Replacement

    Total Hip Replacement or THR is one of the most successful hip operations in orthopaedic surgery. Tens of thousands of hip replacements are performed each year…

    Click here to find out more
  • Hip Resurfacing

    Hip resurfacing was developed to treat painful arthritis in younger and active patients. It’s now an established technique, and the results are usually excellent in carefully selected patients…

    Click here to find out more
  • Revision Hip Surgery

    Hip replacement surgery can be life changing for those dealing with pain on a daily basis. Unfortunately, even a replacement hip can wear out…

    Click here to find out more
  • Hip Replacement

    Total Hip Replacement or THR is one of the most successful hip operations in orthopaedic surgery. Thousands of hip replacements are performed each year…

    Click here to find out more
  • Hip Resurfacing

    Hip resurfacing was developed to treat painful arthritis in younger and active patients. It’s a relatively new technique, but the results are usually excellent…

    Click here to find out more
  • Revision Hip Surgery

    Hip replacement surgery can be life changing for those dealing with pain on a daily basis. Unfortunately, even a replacement hip can wear out…

    Click here to find out more