Pensioner flies from New Zealand to Halesowen for hip op
5:40pm Tuesday 4th September 2012 in Local
A PENSIONER travelled all the way from New Zealand to undergo a pioneering hip replacement operation at a Halesowen hospital.
Alan Lowe, aged 71, who emigrated from Kent in 2005, flew to the West Midlands Hospital where surgeon Edward Davis carried out highly precise computer navigated surgery which offers quicker recover times and lowers the risk of long term complications.
Mr Davis is leading the way in the surgery and has developed a new system that allows hip replacements to be placed more accurately in collaboration with German company Brainlab.
The married grandfather of two said: “The reason I chose it was because I couldn’t see any reason why you wouldn’t use computers as it is crucial to get the hip aligned correctly.
“I did my research from New Zealand and it was all arranged via e mail.”
Mr Lowe returned to the UK this week for a post op check.
He said: “It is wonderful – couldn’t be better. It was worth travelling all this way.”
Mr Lowe said he knew he would have his operation in the UK because his medical insurance would only fund the operation here, but he chose Mr Davis because of his expertise in the field.
He spent around £7,000 on flights for his operation and follow up visit but stayed with family and friends.
Mr Davis’s new system uses infrared cameras and complex mathematics to allow the computer to accurately predict the position the hip should be placed in.