For 17 years, Shawn Parris lived with chronic hip pain. A bad fall had aggravated a previous injury, but she wasn’t sure if surgery was right for her. She lived with the pain while raising a family and working early mornings as a school crossing guard. That changed when she met Joshua C. Rozell, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at NYU Langone Hospital—Brooklyn.
“I wanted to have the surgery earlier, but I was scared at first,” says Parris, 49. “After talking with Dr. Rozell and reviewing my health history with him, it was the right decision. He was wonderful and helped me get back to living life without pain.”
Parris’s pain started when she was in a work-related accident while pregnant with her daughter, fracturing her pelvis and right hip. Three years later, the injury was aggravated when she fell while trying to sit down on an early morning bus to work. Relief finally came when she received same-day anterior hip replacement surgery in the summer of 2020 amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Before the surgery, I was limping and using over-the-counter pain medication,” she says. “It was limiting me a lot. It really slowed me down.”
Parris had developed arthritis in her hip due to the injuries. While it is rare for someone in her 40s to develop arthritis, Dr. Rozell says, a traumatic injury can be a precursor to an early onset of arthritis in the joints.
“The underlying causes of arthritis are multifactorial, but after a health assessment she was found to be a great candidate for hip replacement,” says Dr. Rozell. “It’s wonderful to see her dramatic improvement and getting her quality of life back after dealing with pain and discomfort for so long.”
Dr. Rozell specializes in minimally invasive hip and knee reconstruction, using techniques for same-day discharge and a faster return to normal activity. To make same-day joint replacement possible, he partners with a multidisciplinary team at NYU Langone Hospital—Brooklyn, including experts from NYU Langone’s world renowned Rusk Rehabilitation, to ensure the treatment plan is thoroughly developed, including patient education on the procedure and discharge plan, surgical collaboration in the operating room, and anesthesia practices that limit blood loss. The physical therapy team is engaged with the patient early on to review the plan, which begins immediately after surgery.
“Day zero physical therapy is a critical element to faster recovery from joint replacement,” says Dr. Rozell. “With advances in surgical procedures that limit disruption of tissue and innovations in wound care, the research has shown that activating the muscles and joint on the same day as surgery leads to better outcomes. We want our patients to get back to living their lives normally as soon as possible.”