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When is it needed?

Whether to have full hip replacement surgery should be a cooperative decision made by you, your family, and your family physician. Your doctor may refer you to a specialist for a thorough evaluation to determine if you could benefit from this surgery.

Hip replacement surgery is typically used for people with hip joint damage from arthritis or an injury. Followed by rehabilitation, hip replacement can relieve pain and restore range of motion and function of your hip joint.

Conditions that can damage the hip joint, sometimes necessitating hip replacement surgery include:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Broken hip
  • Bone tumor
  • Osteonecrosis, which occurs when there is inadequate blood supply to the ball
  • portion of the hip joint

Symptoms that might lead you to consider hip replacement include:

  • Pain that keeps you awake at night
  • Little or no relief from pain medications or walking aids
  • Difficulty walking up or down stairs
  • Trouble rising from a seated position
  • Having to stop activities you enjoy, such as walking, because you’re in too much pain

You have options.  Evidence suggests that, depending on your condition or injury, alternative treatments such as anti-inflammatory medication, weight loss, and modified physical activity, can work just as well as surgery.  See Alternative Treatments for more information.

Resources

Please visit these resources for more information:

Hip Replacement.  Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER). 2001-2010. Mayo Clinic

Hip Replacement Tutorial. 1995-2009. National Institutes of Health.

What is Hip Replacement? 2002-2010. EhealthMD

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