Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Types Of Hip Replacement

Traditional hip replacement surgery has been performed regularly in the United States since 1960. Since then, alternative types of hip replacement surgery have been designed and implemented that give individuals afflicted with bad hips many surgical options for replacing their hips.

Traditional Hip Replacement

Standard hip replacement surgery involves replacing the worn or damaged femoral head (hip bone) and acetabular cup (hip socket) with artificial implant materials designed to allow for smooth, pain-free hip joint function. The prosthetic implant materials used in traditional hip replacement surgery can either by press-fit into place or cemented. Press-fit implants, which tend to be more durable, are used more often in younger, active patients. Cemented implants, although not used as much today, are better suited for less active, elderly patients.

Hip Resurfacing

A popular alternative to traditional hip replacement surgery, hip resurfacing surgery involves reshaping (as opposed to replacing) the femoral head and acetabular components of the hip joint. After resurfacing is complete, the femoral head is then fitted with a small metal or plastic liner that is held in place by several small screws. The acetabulum is fitted with a small cup that meshes with the femoral component to allow for normal hip function. Hip resurfacing results in very little bone loss (unlike traditional hip replacement), and as a result, tends to produce a very stable and functional hip joint.

Hemispherical Hip Replacement

Similar to traditional hip replacement surgery, a hemispherical hip replacement, or hemiarthroplasty, involves replacing only the ball portion of the hip joint. This type of hip replacement surgery is commonly performed to repair hip fractures that fail to heal and/or have a poor prognosis for healing. A hemispherical hip replacement involves implanting an artificial femoral stem component into the femur bone. Unlike traditional hip replacement surgery, which involves inserting a prosthetic cup implant into the acetabulum, or hip socket, hemiarthroplasty leaves the acetabulum untouched.

Mini-Incision Hip Replacement

Traditional hip replacement surgery is performed via a very large incision (8 to 12 inches long) made to the lateral edge of the thigh. This type of incision results in a large scar and typically involves significant trauma to the underlying soft tissues surrounding the hip joint. An alternative method of hip replacement implantation, one that uses a much smaller surgical incision to expose the hip joint, is the "mini-incision" hip replacement. Typically, this surgery involves use of a small incision (typically 3 to 4 inches long) made to the lateral thigh and through which the surgeon carefully implants the artificial hip prosthesis. The main advantages of this approach are faster healing times and less blood loss.


Regardless of the exact type of hip replacement that an individual undergoes, the benefits of hip replacement surgery are many and include elimination of hip pain, drastically increased hip range of motion and function, and the ability to resume an active lifestyle. Thanks to hip replacement surgery, no longer do individuals afflicted with various types of painful and potentially crippling hip pathologies need to suffer with agonizing pain and physical disability imposed by a bad hip.

Tags: replacement surgery, femoral head, surgery involves, afflicted with, fitted with, fitted with small, hemispherical replacement