What Is Hip Replacement Surgery & Do You Need It?
July 29, 2022

What Is Hip Replacement Surgery & Do You Need It?

Texas Health Center for Diagnostics and Surgery

Hip replacement surgery involves replacing portions of the hip joint with prostheses (implants). Most people undergo hip replacement surgery so they can move and walk without excruciating and chronic pain and stiffness often associated with degenerative issues such as arthritis.

Categories:   Hip Pain Hip Replacement Joint replacement Joint Replacement Program

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How Do You Know If You Need Hip Replacement Surgery?

If you are having any stiffness or pain in your hips or suffer from arthritis that has failed to respond to conservative treatment options, then you may want to consider discussing this option with your hip surgeon.  Factors associated with hip replacement surgery consideration include:

  • Severe hip pain that is not relieved by lifestyle changes or medication. 

  • Hip stiffness that restricts motion and makes it difficult to walk. 

Preparing for Hip Replacement Surgery

It’s important to follow the instructions and guidance provided by your orthopedic surgeon when preparing for surgery. Following the right steps before and after surgery can help improve recovery time and results. Before surgery you will meet with your surgeon and our joint replacement coordinate.  They will provide you with the proper educational resources for your particular case to help you prepare mentally and physically for the operation as well as the aftercare and rehabilitation. 

What is the difference between partial hip replacement and total hip replacement? 

There are two types of hip replacement: partial hip replacement and total hip replacement. Partial hip replacement replaces only the head of the femur while total hip replacement replaces both the socket and head of the femur. There are also different approaches to hip replacement surgery.  Traditional hip replacement surgery the surgeon makes a larger incision on the side of the hip to access the hip joint.  With anterior hip replacement the surgeon makes a small incision in the front of the hip to access the joint.  This results in less muscle disruption, a shorter recovery period and less restrictions after the recovery period. 

What is the recovery process after hip replacement surgery?

Recovery usually involves one to two nights in the hospital post-surgery so you can be monitored and assisted with your recovery. Some patients may be able to have same-day hip replacement and return home the same day after their procedure.

Most patients are fairly comfortable following surgery thanks to pain management strategies. Each case is different, and the anesthesiologist will help determine the best pain management strategy during and after surgery. It is not uncommon for patients go through the entire experience and require only Tylenol for pain control postoperatively.

After two weeks you'll visit the surgeon again for follow up care and possible staple removal. At which point you’ll be able to resume some of your normal lifestyle needs such as showering, though you may still need the use of crutches or a walker to get around. After around, three to six weeks most people no longer have a need for crutches or a walker anymore, this is something your doctor’s will offer you insight on, and you may be able to continue with activities such as driving. 

You should be able to resume all normal activities after 12 weeks, however the full recovery usually takes about six months. That said, you may continue to experience some pain for a full year following the surgery. Since every patient has a unique response to surgery, it’s important to communicate with your surgeon to determine their expectation for your individual recovery. 

Activities to avoid after hip replacement surgery

If you had anterior hip replacement surgery there are very few restrictions after your surgeon has released you.  Generally, you should be able to resume normal activities one year following surgery.

Duration of joint implant effectiveness after surgery

Initially, it was believed that an artificial joint would be effective for 10 to 20 years, though some can last longer due to the materials and techniques used. 

Talk to the experts

Texas Health Center for Diagnostic & Surgery is an award-winning hospital that performs hip replacement surgery as well as a wide array of other surgical procedures.  If you are suffering from hip pain or have questions about hip replacement surgery, give us a call today.