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American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons

Advocacy, Education, Research

Surgical Options for Hip Arthritis

When non-surgical treatments for hip arthritis fail, you and your doctor may consider surgery. Learn about which surgical options are optimal for treating osteoarthritis in your hip.

Arthroscopy

Hip arthroscopy is usually an outpatient procedure to repair torn cartilage and to remove extra bone that occurs in the very earliest stages of osteoarthritis. The surgeon uses small stab incisions around the hip to allow for insertion of a tiny camera called an arthroscope. For patients over 40 years of age, there are rare circumstances that would require arthroscopy.

Osteotomy

Femoral and acetabular osteotomy surgery involves cutting the bone to reorient your hip joint when your hip has structural abnormalities. It is extensive surgery that requires the insertion of plates and screws to fix the bone while it heals. It requires inpatient hospitalization for several days, and recovery usually takes six to twelve weeks.

Hip Resurfacing

Hip resurfacing is a type of hip replacement that is usually reserved for young, active males. It is a metal-on-metal device where the hip ball is capped. It usually requires inpatient hospitalization for several days, and recovery usually takes six to twelve weeks. This procedure has recently fallen out of favor, and there are few circumstances where it would be required.

Total Hip Replacement

Total hip replacement (THR) is the gold standard for treating your disabling hip pain. Circumstances that indicate the necessity of THR occur in individuals of all ages, sexes, and activity levels. It is best to have THR after you turn the age of 60 because of the risk of having to undergo surgery again due to mechanical failure after 15 to 20 years. It can be performed through various approaches (front, back, side) with various implant designs. Currently the most common designs are made out of titanium with metal heads against the newest plastics. It is extensive surgery that requires inpatient hospitalization for one to three days, and recovery usually takes six to twelve weeks.

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These articles have been written and peer reviewed by the AAHKS Patient and Public Relations Committee and the AAHKS Evidence Based Medicine Committee.
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