Over the last 25 years, major advancements in hip replacement have greatly improved the surgical outcomes.
Hip resurfacing is a new way to help restore quality of life for today’s younger and more active patients—especially patients with good bone quality, in early osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, or patients at risk of requiring more than one hip joint replacement in their lifetime.
Hip resurfacing combines conservative arthroplasty with metal-on-metal bearing technology. Like total hip arthroplasty, hip resurfacing involves implanting a metal cup in the joint. However, whereas total hip surgery removes a section of the femoral bone, hip resurfacing acts like capping a tooth by shaping the bone and cementing a metal cap over it.
The No. 1 benefit of hip resurfacing is that patients retain more of their natural femoral bone, meaning more of your healthy bone is kept intact.
The damaged area is simply resurfaced, not removed. Other benefits include:
- Advanced technology offers longer-lasting, more durable hip resurfacings
- The metal-on-metal devise will not chip or crack like a metal-on-plastic or ceramic-on-ceramic components might.
- Larger articulating heads may reduce the risk of dislocation, and provide a more natural feel and improved gait than traditional total hip arthroplasty.
- Hip resurfacing has the potential to be revised more easily to a total hip than if a total hip needed revision
Several Alvarado Hospital orthopedic surgeons have received specialized training to provide their patients with the option of hip resurfacing. The surgery usually takes one to three hours. A post-operative rehabilitation program is common. Patients should have realistic expectations. Artificial hips are not the same as normal, healthy bones, so excessive weight or extreme activities can affect the joint. The success rate and effectiveness of your rehabilitation is critically dependent on your commitment to the program. It is important that you listen carefully to, and follow the instructions of your surgeon, therapist and clinical caregivers.
Who is Not a Candidate?
- Pregnant women or women who intend to get pregnant
- Extremely overweight patients
- Patients with
- skeletal immaturity (bones are still growing)
- kidney failure
- multiple cysts
- allergy to metal (ie: jewelry)
- weak immune system
- nerve or muscle disease that would compromise success
- possible infection in or around the hip
- poor bone quality that could not support the implant
- Patients unable to follow post-surgery requirements
While hip resurfacing is a wonderful solution, it is not the right choice for everyone. You should discuss all your options with your surgeon. For example, there are non-surgical treatments, such as modified activity, weight reduction, pain medication, physical therapy or walking aids; hip osteotomy, which involves cutting a hole in the bone to relieve pressure and promote healing; hip fusion, which connects the hip socket and thigh bone (femur) into a stable, unbending joint; and total hip replacement, which means removing the femoral head bone and inserting a metal, plastic or ceramic device in the hip joint.