Hip Care

Wisconsin Bone & Joint hip care experts offer comprehensive
services to individuals with a wide range of hip pain issues.

Minimally Invasive Hip Surgery

Hip Specialists At Wisconsin Bone & Joint

The physicians at Wisconsin Bone & Joint utilize cutting-edge technology to assess, diagnose and work with patients to develop innovative treatment plans for a variety of hip conditions and injuries. Our team of physicians are committed to providing you with the best treatment options to alleviate your hip pain.

Providing trusted Orthopedic care in the community for over 40+ years

At Wisconsin Bone and Joint, we pride ourselves with providing you highly personalized and comprehensive orthopedic care. Our philosophy of direct physician-to-patient care means your physician will be an intrical part of every stage of your care. This commitment to a dedicated continuum-of-care model has made us one of the most trusted and respected practices in Southeast Wisconsin and greater Milwaukee area.

Minimally Invasive Hip Surgery

What Is Minimally Invasive Hip Surgery?

Hip replacement are among the most common and successful orthopaedic surgeries. The indications for these surgeries are well established and their overall success documented by extensive research. Substantial pain relief and improvement in function, with longevity of 15 years or more, is expected for most patients.


The purpose of this position statement is to provide information to patients about the emerging use of minimally invasive and small incision techniques in the practice of hip  joint replacement surgery.


“Less invasive surgery” is terminology that encompasses both small incision techniques and minimally invasive techniques. Small incision hip replacement surgery entails performing the conventional approach through a smaller skin incision. The length of less invasive incisions may be compared to contemporary incisions (those used by most surgeons today), which are smaller than historical incisions (those used when joint replacement surgery was in its early stages of development). Minimally invasive hip replacement surgery uses not only a smaller incision (or incisions) but also new exposure techniques. This is said to be less invasive to soft tissues and or bone.

In less invasive hip arthroplasty, reports have described both one and two incision surgeries.

Some techniques allow for surgery through a single incision, usually one-half the length of a contemporary total hip incision. Other techniques utilize two smaller incisions—each two to four inches in length. Minimally invasive surgery may allow less hip muscle detachment and smaller capsular incisions. In all implant surgery there is some trauma to the tissues.

Less invasive surgery may include unique pre- and post-operative pathways for anesthesia, nursing care and rehabilitation. Some institutions, however, may include both contemporary and less invasive surgical patients in the same pathways.

Patient Selection Criteria

Patient selection for less invasive surgery is evolving, but some surgeons define the ideal patient as young, thin, healthy and motivated. The procedures are more difficult and the risk of complications appears to be higher in muscular patients, overweight patients, patients with marked bone or joint deformity, and those requiring larger sized implants. Good candidates should have a thorough understanding of the possible advantages and disadvantages of this type of surgery.

What To Discuss With Your Surgeon?

You should have a clear understanding of the goals of your joint replacement surgery before you proceed. A discussion of joint replacement surgery should include a review of the technique that your surgeon suggests. If your surgeon offers minimally invasive or small incision surgery, ask about potential short-and long-term risks and benefits of this type of surgery. Review his or her specific results for contemporary and minimally invasive surgery in relation to fracture, infection, blood clot, neurovascular injury and dislocation rates. Complications appear to be more common when the surgeon has less experience with this type of surgery. Understanding the usual post-operative course, including hospitalization, blood loss, rehabilitation and return to work is important.

What Are The Treatment Options For Minimally Invasive Hip Surgery?

Less invasive hip replacement surgery is of great interest to both patients and their surgeons. Much of this interest is based on the promise of the same or better long-term results, with a shorter and less painful recovery. This set of outcomes has not yet been validated with large studies. The most positive results have been demonstrated by a small number of high surgical volume total joint centers in selected patient populations. We will have a better understanding of the value of this type of surgery in the future, and hope to understand whether it will benefit most joint replacement patients, just select groups of patients, or relatively few patients.


The reported advantages of less invasive surgery occur in the first few weeks or months after surgery. The reported short-term advantages include:

  • Smaller incision length (improved cosmesis)
  • Less discomfort (immediate peri-operative pain)
  • Less blood loss (fewer blood transfusions)
  • Shorter hospitalization
  • Shorter rehabilitation
  • Earlier return to work
  • Potential Complications

The reported disadvantages of less invasive surgery relate to the difficulty of performing surgery within a restricted visual field as well as issues related to learning a new exposure technique.

The reported disadvantages include:

  • Stretching/tearing of skin/soft tissues
  • A more restricted visual surgical field
  • Increased duration of surgery
  • Superficial nerve injury in hip surgery with the anterior incision
  • Fracture of bone during implant insertion
  • Limited implant choices
  • Unknown Surgical Technique Related Factors

Several factors are not yet thoroughly understood when comparing contemporary and less invasive hip and knee replacement surgery. These factors will be the object of ongoing research, and include:

  • Long-term durability of the joint reconstruction
  • Long term pain relief, motion and function
  • Implant positioning
  • Infection rate
  • Incidence of thromboembolism
  • Incidence of neurovascular injury
  • Joint stability and dislocation rate
  • Reoperation rate

Our team is here for you

When conservative care and treatment is appropriate, we offer the best, least invasive, least aggressive treatment options to relieve your pain and discomfort. When an injury is more serious and conservative care is not an option, our orthopedic surgeons provide the latest in innovative surgical interventions available with the goal of getting you back to the life you love. Wisconsin Bone & Joint physicians offer orthopedic services at three convenient locations in Mayfair, Glendale and Cedarburg.