A hip replacement is a surgery to remove the painful and damaged parts of the hip. The portions that are damaged are replaced with an artificial prosthesis that consists of a socket, ball and stem. Reasons necessitating a hip replacement could include osteo or rheumatoid arthritis, fractures or dislocations of the hip and/or aseptic bone necrosis, which is caused by damage to the blood vessels that supply oxygen to the bone.
An orthopedic surgeon may suggest hip replacement surgery for individuals who have damage to the joint caused by arthritis or an injury to the hip that creates difficulty in walking and participating in everyday activities.
Hip replacement surgery is performed through an incision over the side of the hip. The orthopedic surgeon removes any damaged portions of the socket surface before replacing the damaged or diseased bone with a prosthetic ball and socket joint.
The implant may be affixed with bone acrylic cement, which secures the implant to the bone or through Press-Fix or Biologic Fixation, a special porous coating that allows tissue to grow to the bone. Patients will begin rehabilitation with the assistance of a physical therapist within 24 hours of surgery. Orthopedic surgeons recommend that hip replacement patients should avoid high-impact activities such as basketball, racquetball, jogging or gymnastics, but they recommend that patients continue activities such as walking, golf, swimming and bicycling.