8.11.2018

Small cut, big effect

The artificial joint replacement of the hip joint is the most common orthopedic surgery worldwide. In Germany too, more than 200,000 hip joints are replaced by prostheses per year. But who gets a new hip, often takes weeks and months to get back on its feet and rebuild strength and flexibility. The endoprosthetics center at Klinikum Gütersloh uses hip implants with an innovative minimally invasive procedure that protects muscles and nerves, allowing faster recovery after surgery. The team around center leader Frank Hellwich is a pioneer in the region with this so-called AMIS method.

In AMIS (Anterior Minimally Invasive Surgery), the doctors do not use the posterior or lateral access to the hip, as is usual in hip replacement surgery, but the anterior part. The overlying muscles, tendons and nerves are not severed to gain access to the hip, but pushed aside, so that the surgery can use the natural gap between two muscles on the front of the groin. "The AMIS method therefore leads to a much smaller trauma and a reduced burden on the body by the operation. This has many advantages: Patients have less postoperative pain, can move their hip joints faster and are mobile again without walking aids. "In contrast to other surgical techniques, AMIS also requires a small incision so that a smaller surgical scar is left behind. The hospital stay is shorter than other methods.

Since 2008, the endoprosthetics center at Klinikum Gütersloh has been operating the artificial hip joint replacement using the AMIS method. The center's surgeons have many years of experience with the procedure. Frank Hellwich, together with colleagues recently passed on to physicians from all over Germany during an operation course for orthopedic and trauma surgeons in Essen. »As part of such courses, we teach colleagues who want to relearn these procedures. Interest in these courses has increased enormously in recent years. Experienced surgeons are therefore coveted speakers and practical instructors in order to make this special technology available to an increasing number of patients in Germany," explains Dr. med. Frank Hellwich. In the immediate vicinity, the Klinikum Gütersloh is the only hospital that uses the AMIS method for hip surgery. "This means that the endoprosthetics center at the Gütersloh Clinic has a unique selling point in the supply of artificial hip joints, from which our patients benefit a lot," emphasizes the head of the center.

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