Core Decompression


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Core decompression is a surgical procedure performed to treat avascular necrosis (also known as osteonecrosis) of the hip joint. Avascular necrosis occurs when the blood supply to the bone is disrupted, leading to bone cell death and deterioration.

Should you opt for core decompression?

The core decompression surgical procedure for avascular necrosis of the hip offers several potential benefits

  • Pain Relief: Core decompression aims to alleviate pain and reduce symptoms associated with avascular necrosis of the hip.
  • Preservation of Hip Joint: Core decompression is designed to preserve the hip joint by halting or slowing down the progression of avascular necrosis
  • Delay or Avoidance of Total Hip Replacement: Core decompression can potentially delay or even prevent the need for total hip replacement surgery in the early stages of avascular necrosis
  • Improved Quality of Life: By reducing pain and preserving hip joint function, core decompression can enhance the overall quality of life for individuals with avascular necrosis
Core Decompression ? Diagnosis And Treatment

When is it suggested

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Core decompression may be recommended in the following situations:

  • Core decompression is most effective when performed in the early stages of avascular necrosis before significant damage or collapse of the femoral head (the ball-shaped top of the thigh bone that fits into the hip socket).

  • Core decompression is typically considered for individuals who experience significant hip pain, limited range of motion, difficulty walking, and increased discomfort with weight-bearing activities.

  • Core decompression is more likely to be successful when the avascular necrosis lesion is localized to a specific area of the femoral head.

  • The suitability for core decompression is also influenced by individual patient factors, such as age, overall health, and the presence of other underlying conditions.

Diagnosis and Treatment

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Here is an overview of the core decompression procedure:

  • Anesthesia: Core decompression is typically performed under general anesthesia, meaning you will be asleep during the procedure. In some cases, spinal or regional anesthesia may be used.
  • Incision: An incision is made in the hip area to access the femoral head, which is the ball-shaped top of the femur (thigh bone) that fits into the hip socket.
  • Drilling: Using specialized instruments, the surgeon drills one or more holes into the affected area of the femoral head. The goal is to relieve pressure within the bone and promote the formation of new blood vessels, which can help restore blood flow to the compromised area.
  • Removal of Core: In some cases, a core sample of bone may be removed from the affected area during the drilling process. This is done to reduce pressure and potentially improve blood supply.
  • Closure: After the procedure, the incision is closed with sutures or staples, and sterile dressings are applied.

Post operative care

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After core decompression, you will be taken to the recovery area. Depending on the extent of the procedure, you may need to use crutches for a period of time to limit weight-bearing on the affected hip. Your doctor will provide instructions on weight-bearing restrictions and a rehabilitation program to aid in the healing process and recovery.