Hip joint replacement
Hip joint replacement is surgery to replace all or part of the hip joint with a man-made (artificial) joint. The artificial joint is called a prosthesis.
Hip arthroplasty; Total hip replacement; Hip hemiarthroplasty
Your hip joint is made up of two major parts. One or both parts may be replaced during surgery:
The new hip that replaces the old one is made up of these parts:
You will not feel any pain during surgery because you will have one of two types of anesthesia:
After you receive anesthesia, your surgeon will make a surgical cut to open up your hip joint. Often this cut is over the buttocks. Then your surgeon will:
This surgery usually takes 1 to 3 hours.
Why the Procedure Is Performed
The most common reason to have a hip joint replaced is to relieve severe arthritis pain that is limiting your activities.
Hip joint replacement is usually done in people age 60 and older, but many people who have this surgery are younger. Younger people who have a hip replaced may put extra stress on the artificial hip. That extra stress can cause it to wear out. Part or all of the joint may need to be replaced again if that happens.
Your doctor may recommend a hip replacement for these problems:
Other reasons for replacing the hip joint are:
Risks for any anesthesia are:
Risks for any surgery are:
Before the Procedure
Always tell your doctor or nurse what drugs you are taking, even drugs, supplements, or herbs you bought without a prescription.
During the 2 weeks before your surgery:
Practice using a cane, walker, crutches, or wheelchair correctly to:
On the day of your surgery:
Your doctor or nurse will tell you when to arrive at the hospital.
After the Procedure
You will stay in the hospital for 2 - 3 days. During that time you will recover from your anesthesia, and from the surgery itself. You will be asked to start moving and walking as soon as the first day after surgery.
Some people need a short stay in a rehabilitation center after they leave the hospital and before they go home. At a rehab center, you will learn how to safely do your daily activities on your own. Home health services are also available.
For more information, see also:
Hip replacement surgery results are usually excellent. Most or all of your pain and stiffness should go away.
Some people may have problems with infection, loosening, or even dislocation of the new hip joint.
Over time -- sometimes as long as 15 - 20 years -- the artificial hip joint will loosen. You may need a second replacement.
Younger, more active people may wear out parts of their new hip. It may need to be replaced before the artificial hip loosens.
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Review Date: 6/22/2012
Reviewed By: A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, and David R. Eltz. Previously reviewed by C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Assistant Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Dept of Orthopaedic Surgery (9/22/2011).
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