Size a hurdle but United States citizen gets new hip joint
NEW DELHI: Kipp Archambault, a school teacher from the US, travelled all the way to India to get his degenerated hip replaced but his unusual height and heavy body weight made the commonest of this orthopaedic procedure a gargantuan task. He also had a blood disorder that the doctors had to contend with. The 56-year-old man weighs more than 130 kg and is six feet and seven inches tall.
Doctors said the size of his hip joint was considerably larger and special implants were imported from the US to conduct a total hip replacement surgery.
“He is my tallest patient yet,” said Dr Yash Gulati, joint replacement and spine surgeon at Apollo Hospital who operated on Kipp. A hip replacement surgery involves removing the degenerated or diseased joint and replacing it with an artificial joint, called prosthesis. The hip prosthesis consists of a ball component, made of metal or ceramic, and a socket. “In this case, the patient had a large skeletal frame. We had to arrange a custom-fit hip socket and other implants for him because the normal size did not fit. For example, we used a 90 mm artificial hip socket. The normal size is between 48 mm and 64 mm. The femoral stem was also replaced with a larger-sized implant,” said Gulati.
Kipp said he had been suffering from severe hip pain since four years and he had to limp to move from one place to the other. “I could not sleep due to pain and I was gaining weight because I could not do workouts. I went to many hospitals in the US but the charges were simply unaffordable. Finally, my daughter, Angelique, told me that hip replacement surgery is cheaper in India and we came here,” he said. Kipp said two weeks after the surgery, he is now able to stand on his own and the pain has gone almost.
“We are flying to the US today. I had postponed my wedding plans for dad’s surgery. Now, we are going to have grand celebrations and party,” said Angelique, herself a wedding planner.
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