This article is part of the the Ultimate Guide to Hip Pain Relief.
Patients that are at the point of needing surgery to resolve their hip pain may be recommended a hip replacement. If you are a patient at this step in your treatment plan, you may be researching and looking to learn more about hip replacement surgery.
Understanding the pros & cons of hip replacement can provide more clarity and understanding before going into surgery.
IBJI recently chatted with Dr. Sean Sutphen, board certified orthopedic surgeon with fellowship training in adult hip and knee reconstruction and total joint replacement. Dr. Sutphen reviews and explains both the pros & cons of hip replacement. His responses—below—have been edited and condensed for space.
Pros of Hip Replacement
Overall very high success rate
Dr. Sutphen: Total hip replacement is considered to be one of the most successful surgeries in medicine today. The success rate for this surgery is excellent, with greater than 95% of patients experiencing hip pain relief. The success rate of hip replacements after 10 years from surgery is 90-95% and at 20 years is 80-85%.
Improvement in hip function
Dr. Sutphen: After total hip replacement, you will have the ability to walk and take part in activities without limitation. Activities that have been limiting prior to surgery including putting shoes and socks on, getting up from a chair, and going up and down stairs are much more easier to do.
Dr. Sutphen: This is the main benefit the procedure has to offer and the main reason for surgery. A total hip replacement can provide a significant reduction in pain, with majority of patients getting complete relief from their hip pain secondary to arthritis.
Cons of Hip Replacement
Although total hip replacement is deemed to be a very safe procedure, there are associated risks that patients need to be made aware of prior to surgery.
Dr. Sutphen: A very small number of patients (roughly 1%) can develop an infection around their hip replacement. This can be one of the most hindering complications associated with total hip replacements, as it can require additional surgeries and prolonged antibiotics to treat the hip infection.
Change in leg length
Dr. Sutphen: It can occur after surgery, as one leg may feel longer or shorter than the opposite leg. While your surgeon attempts to make the leg lengths equal, minor differences may occur as a result of attempting to increase the stability of the hip.
Dr. Sutphen: Dislocation can occur as the ball of the hip becomes displaced from the hip socket. This can occur in less than 2% of patients after surgery. In addition, over time the hip replacement components can begin to wear or loosen. This is a long-term complication of total hip replacement.
Patients considering a hip replacement should further discuss any questions or concerns they may have with their hip specialist. IBJI doctors always welcome questions when it comes to your care.
Get Relief from Your Hip Pain Today
Hip Care and Treatment at IBJI
Whether you are just starting out in your hip care journey or need a second opinion for your hip pain, IBJI’s hip surgeons are here to help provide you with the necessary care for your ailment. Get the relief you are seeking with the help of IBJI.
Request an appointment with an IBJI hip surgeon to discuss treatment options and create an individualized approach to your care.
*The blog is for general information and educational purposes only regarding musculoskeletal conditions. The information provided does not constitute the practice of medicine or other healthcare professional services, including the giving of medical advice, and no doctor-patient relationship is formed. Readers with musculoskeletal conditions should seek the advice of their healthcare professionals without delay for any condition they have. The use of the information is at the reader’s own risk. The content is not intended to replace diagnosis, treatment or medical advice from your treating healthcare professional.
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