Consultant Q&A: Mr Andrew Skyrme

Consultant Q&A: Mr Andrew Skyrme

Mr Andrew Skyrme is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon who specialises in hip, knee, and foot and ankle surgery. In this Q&A, he discusses standard vs minimally invasive hip replacement surgery, and details which approach he takes. 

He also explains the important stages of recovery following hip replacement surgery and highlights the key features of why patients should choose The Horder Centre. 

Q1. Standard vs minimally invasive hip replacement surgery

A. As patients, you'll know or be aware that there are many techniques, and the main discussion is whether you have standard open surgery or minimally invasive surgery. As a hip surgeon here at The Horder Centre, I carry out minimally invasive hip surgery, and I do that for multiple reasons. The first thing is that it's less traumatic to you as a patient, and if there's less trauma, it generally means your recovery is quicker. What we're finding here at The Horder Centre, is patients are up and walking the same day and are often going home either the same day or even the next day, so your recovery is just that much quicker. As a result, there's less bleeding, less blood loss, and less pain. As a sidebar, the scar on the outside is smaller.  

There are multiple surgeons here at The Horder Centre who are happy to carry out minimally invasive surgery, I'm not the only one. For the most part, we were taught by one of our good colleagues, Hugh Apthorp, who has probably done most of the pioneering work in minimally invasive hip surgery. 

Q2. What recovery can I expect after a hip replacement?

A. I would suggest you could divide it into stages. Those stages first of all, being the hospital stay. For the most part, we look after you whilst you're in hospital, but I think you can plan to be in hospital for between one and three days.  

The second stage of recovery is between the day you go home and week two. During that period of time, you want to be taking it easy at home. You don't want to be doing cooking, gardening, cleaning, ironing. Ideally, there's somebody else at home to be looking after you, that would be great. I tend to call patients at week two to make sure they're doing fine. If you're doing fine at the end of week two, I like patients to drive.    

I then suggest that the next recovery stage is from week two to week six. During that period of time, it's a slow return to normal activities, and just allowing things to gently improve. We give you guidance on that and there's a booklet that gives you milestones. But my advice is just each day inch forward. By the end of week six, the majority of your pain will have improved. At that point, you can really start to reintroduce normal life. And so, if you're a keen gardener, you can start to garden. If you're a keen walker, you can start to increase your distance. If you're a golfer, start to swing a club. And then by end of month three, you should be 98% better.  

One of my retired colleagues from many years ago, Ken Ross, a lovely surgeon from Eastbourne, said that 98% of the recovery happened at three months. A hundred percent took a year. So that tiny little bit at the end sort of gets better over the last year. 

Q3. Why should I choose The Horder Centre?

A. The easiest way to answer that is to say that my mother and my father have both had surgery here. One lives in Surrey, one lives in South Wales, and they bypassed multiple hospitals for their operation, and they've arrived here. Why have they come here? The reason for that is The Horder Centre is now a centre of excellence. It is the busiest hip and knee centre in the independent sector in the United Kingdom. Four or five of the surgeons here are the busiest surgeons in the country. And again, these statistics are nationally available and they're very easy to find.  

Everybody here at The Horder Centre is geared to your healthcare. That's not just the consultants. The nurses in theatre, all they do all day every day is hip and knee replacements. All the ancillary staff, the cleaners, the cooks, the man who works in the car park, everyone here knows that you're having a hip placement on this day, and they're all geared to your healthcare. So, I've got absolutely no reservations in suggesting that The Horder Centre is the right place for you. 

Mr Andrew Skyrme FRCS (Tr. & Orth.) is a leading Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon specialising in hip, knee, and foot and ankle surgery. He joined The Horder Centre, Crowborough, in 2004, and is the Chairman of The Horder Centre, Orthopaedic Medical Advisory Committee.

Hip Replacement Surgery

Our hip joint is made up of two parts: the hip socket, or acetabulum, a cup-shaped bone in the pelvis, and the “ball”, which is the head of the thigh bone (femur).

Over time, your hip joint can become damaged due to wear and tear as we get older, arthritic conditions or injury. If so, you may be referred for a total hip replacement, a surgical procedure to replace the joint.

Book a consultation with The Horder Centre

If you are experiencing significant shoulder pain and want to discover the treatment options available to you, book a consultation with The Horder Centre. Our team is on hand to support you through the treatment process, from your initial consultation to any aftercare you may need.

We provide outstanding patient experiences

The Horder Centre is an award-winning Centre of Excellence that offers patients a unique therapeutic environment. Specifically designed for orthopaedic surgery, our facilities include a physiotherapy inpatient gym and courtyard gardens designed by clinical experts to enhance recovery. Finance options available.

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