As an Orthopaedic surgeon specialising in Hip and Knee replacement surgery, Dr Ackermann also has a keen interest in hip and knee preservation surgery. Hip preservation is a type of surgical intervention done by Dr Ackermann to prevent or at least delay the need for a hip joint replacement (arthroplasty).
The hip is the purest ball-and-socket joint of the body, and in most cases, this joint fails due to a simple change in biomechanics. Since hip replacement surgery is a major surgery, indicated in only severe cases, usually for older adults, Dr Ackermann prides himself in providing hip joint preservation surgery for various conditions that affect the hip joint including developmental dysplasia (dislocation) of the hip (DDH), congenital hip dislocation (CHD), hip impingement, deformities of the hip such as coxa vara, coxa valga, Legg Calve Perthes disease or leg malalignment due to deformity, trauma or fractures. These conditions cause severe and disabling hip pain, which, without treatment, may lead to arthritis damaging the hip joint further. Left untreated these patients often require surgical reconstruction or replacement of the joint at a young age.
Hip preservation treatments are currently used on younger patients suffering from hip pain, as an alternative to hip replacement surgery, preserving the natural hip joint for as long as possible while providing pain relief. Hip joint preservation is tailored to each patient individually. Depending on the condition and current state of the hip joint, as well as the age and mobility of the patient, hip preservation treatments may involve physical therapy, intraarticular injections, nutrition or surgery. Hip preservation surgery may be done arthroscopically (minimally invasively) or through open surgery, by removing loose fragments within the joint or performing microfracture surgery on the torn cartilage within the hip joint.
In other cases, hip preservation may involve correcting hip mechanics and reshaping the pelvis or femur to prolong the longevity of the hip joint through a surgical hip dislocation, periacetabular osteotomy and femoral osteoplasty.