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First patient to return home within 24 hours after Minimally Invasive SuperPath hip replacement at Hereford County Hospital

Press release – 25 January 2019

First patient to return home within 24 hours after Minimally Invasive SuperPath hip replacement at Hereford County Hospital 

A Herefordshire patient was able to return home within 24 hours following a new surgical technique for hip replacement at Hereford County Hospital. 

57 year old, Nick Dobson, who lives near Ledbury, is the first patient at the hospital to undergo the new SuperPath surgical technique for total hip replacement and return home within 24 hours after surgery.  This involves minimally invasive surgery allowing patients to mobilise more quickly, leading to a faster recovery. 

Nick, who underwent surgery only eight weeks ago, was able to get up and walk within a few hours of the procedure and returned home the following day. 

Nick said: “I was a very active person enjoying cycling and swimming, but the pain from my hip was so debilitating I couldn’t even walk far.  A hip replacement is life changing from the instant you wake post-surgery, because the pain I had suffered for months had gone and the change was transformational overnight.  

“To be able to accelerate my recovery to four weeks with minimally invasive surgery, half the time of a standard hip replacement, has made such a difference.  I was up and walking with crutches within hours after the surgery and received fantastic care from Teme Ward staff, physiotherapists, and was ready to leave by the next morning.   

“I’m delighted to have been able to get back into my fitness routine so quickly and have already walked and pedalled well over two hundred miles since the surgery”.  

More than 200 hip replacements are carried out at Hereford County Hospital each year and the Trust has introduced new ways of working to significantly reduce the average length of stay for patients. 

Mr Peter Shewell, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at Wye Valley NHS Trust who undertook the procedure, said: “Patients recover more quickly at home and we have introduced a number of changes in the last twelve months in an attempt to reduce the average length of stay for joint replacements, from four to five days down to three days to enhance patients recovery. 

“We are also pleased to offer this new minimally invasive surgical technique at Hereford County Hospital as part of a trial period. Whilst it is not appropriate for every case and is best suited to active patients with good support at home it does offer an enhanced recovery opportunity for suitable patients. 

“The key difference to the traditional method is that only a small incision is used to access the hip joint, which makes the surgery less painful.  Although it takes longer to perform the operation, as the modular hip joint is built up inside the body, the patient’s recovery is proving to be significantly quicker.

“It has taken a number of months to perfect the surgical technique and the whole team has worked hard to develop the rehabilitation pathway. To successfully discharge Nick home within the 24 hour intended time frame has been a great achievement”. 

The trial will run for a 12 month period to assess the patient outcomes and viability of offering this procedure long-term at Hereford County Hospital.  


Left to right: Kit Halsall - Advanced Clinical Practitioner at WVT, Nick Dobson – patient - who has walked and pedalled well over two hundred miles since his recent surgery, and Mr Peter Shewell, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at WVT


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Note to editors

Wye Valley NHS Trust is a provider health services across Herefordshire and beyond.

The Trust exists to improve the wellbeing, independence and health of the people we serve. We are the leading provider of health care in Herefordshire.

By working closely with our partners, we can make good our promise to deliver a quality of care we would want for ourselves, our families and our friends.

With an estimated annual turnover of around £180 million, we employ around 2,700 plus staff. We aim to build new relationships between our staff, patients, service users and their carers with the wider community.


For further information please contact:

Wye valley NHS Trust communications team 01432 372928 or 01432 355444 x5105.

Contact Details

John Burnett
Communication and engagement manager
Tel: 01432 372928
Email: John.Burnett@wvt.nhs.uk

Amanda Millichip
Communications officer
Tel: 01432 355444 Ext: 5105
Email: Amanda.Millichip@wvt.nhs.uk

Fiona Gurney
Communications officer
Tel: 01432 355444 Ext: 5105
Email:  Fiona.gurney@wvt.nhs.uk


Postal address:

Wye Valley NHS Trust
The County Hospital
Trust Headquarters
Union Walk

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