Hip operation only takes a few hours

A new hip operation allows patients to spend only a few hours under the knife, and then walk out of the hospital themselves with a new hip.

At the Reinier de Graaf Gasthuis in Delft, just such an operation was performed on 61-year old Wil de Visser, the AD reports.

She was the first patient in Europe who was able to return home by herself after her operation. These kinds of procedures usually require patients to remain three days in a hospital bed.

De Visser was also conscious during the operation. She could see exactly what her surgeon was doing as the operation is done under local anesthesia.

Orthopedic surgeon Stefan Vehmeijer says that the secret is a low dosage of painkillers and an operation procedure that does very little damage to the muscle. "Hereby patients experience less pain and nausea after the operation, so that they can recover quickly", Vehmeijer tells the AD.

"It doesn't hurt at all" says patient Wil de Visser, who is very enthusiastic. She could get out of bed by herself after a few hours, walk, sit and even climb stairs. "I can put the crutches away."

There is a condition to receiving this treatment, however. Patients must be fit, and below a certain age.