Michael Kinnebrew, MD, DDS, is an unabashed baby-boomer, part of a generation born roughly between the years 1946 and 1964 and generally associated with optimism, exploration, achievement and robust physical ability.
“That would be me,” said Dr. Kinnebrew, a local oral and maxillofacial surgeon. “I’ve been active all my life – windsurfing, skiing and being outdoors. I can’t think of a day without being active.”
A history of bone-on-bone arthritis in his left hip, however, was taking its painful toll and a limp soon developed. Then a crucial, if not colorful, event forced Dr. Kinnebrew’s hand in finding a long-term hip solution.
“I was square dancing at MerleFest,” said Dr. Kinnebrew, alluding to the popular North Carolina-based music festival. “I planted a foot, turned, and down I went.”
Dr. Kinnebrew’s hip healing came in the form of a procedure called hip resurfacing as performed by orthopedic surgeon Jack Bowling, MD, at the NHRMC Cape Fear Orthopedic Specialty Hospital.
Unlike traditional hip replacement – a frequent treatment option for patients with conditions like Dr. Kinnebrew’s – resurfacing does not require removing the head of the femur (the bone in the upper leg) to replace it with an artificial ball. Instead, the head is reshaped and capped with a prosthetic that, as in the traditional procedure, fits into a man-made lining in the socket.
“Advantages of hip resurfacing over hip replacement include giving the joint the ability to handle greater stress and more flexibility,” said Dr. Bowling. “Any patient with an active lifestyle interested in an alternative to total hip replacement is a candidate for hip resurfacing, although bone quality remains the most important determining factor.”
“I had read about the procedure extensively,” said Dr. Kinnebrew, “and as a physician it just made sense to me.”
Dr. Kinnebrew said he experienced only minimal pain and was home in two days. Two weeks of physical therapy followed.
“The procedure was very successful, and I feel great,” said Dr. Kinnebrew. “And I can’t say enough about the physicians, nurses and staff at Cape Fear Orthopedic Specialty Hospital – they got me back doing what I love doing, but even better.”
For more information, visit nhrmc.org/orthopedics, or call Vitaline at 910.815.5188.