April Hough – Anterior Approach Hip Replacement Success Story

Ready to be pain-free – April Hough discovers the difference a new hip makes

April Hough with FamilyReady, set, go! That’s the expression 40-year-old April Hough used when realizing a total hip replacement was the best option for giving her a life free of pain.

“At the time I was 39, and I had battled with pain in my left hip for about four years,” she says. “The pain intensified over time and eventually got to where going from point A to point B was a challenge.”

Hough found her way to Diane Litke, MD, independently practicing orthopedic surgeon on the medical staff at Methodist Richardson Medical Center.

A new hip

Because of a congenital abnormality that predisposed her to hip problems, Hough was relatively young to experience such severe joint issues. As with most of her patients, Dr. Litke wanted to try conservative, nonsurgical therapies first. She prescribed cortisone injections and physical therapy for Hough, but the pain continued to worsen.

“The cartilage that covers the ball and socket joint was gone, which became a bone-on-bone situation and was very painful,” says Dr. Litke, who was becoming increasingly concerned that Hough’s hip would actually break. She suggested a total hip replacement as the next — and best — course of treatment.

Hough, an active mom of two daughters, ages 7 and 12, keeps busy with the girls’ athletic schedules. Fearful of where she would be the day the worst-case scenario happened, she quickly realized the need for the hip replacement. She looked at Dr. Litke and said, “How fast can I get this done?”

A new approach – anterior approach hip replacement surgery

The anterior approach hip replacement surgery was scheduled for June 6, 2011, at Methodist Richardson and was a success, thanks to the minimally invasive anterior approach that Dr. Litke used.

“The anterior approach allows me to go in through the front of the leg instead of the traditional approach of going through the back,” Dr. Litke says. “It allows for a much smaller incision and doesn’t involve as much disruption to the muscle as does the more standard approach. The patient experiences much less pain after surgery this way.

April Hough hula hooping“In April’s case, she went from limping along to dancing with her daughters.”

Hough describes her stay at Methodist Richardson and her recovery period as “awesome!”

“I was very impressed with the excellent care I received,” she says. She was up and moving the next day, and two weeks postsurgery, she needed no cane or walker. “I had no pain whatsoever after a month.”

Hough isn’t the only one thrilled about her life without pain. So are her husband, mother, and daughters.

“I am elated that we were blessed enough to come across Dr. Litke,” Hough’s mom, Sheba Caldwell, says. “I am so happy to see April feeling well again.”

From the fall 2012 edition of Shine magazine.