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What is a Hip Replacement?

When non-operative treatment fails to control the discomfort and stiffness from joint pain, your Surgeon may recommend total hip replacement.

Joint replacement implants, typically made from metal alloy and polyethylene (plastic), are used to replace the joint. Newer implants with metal sockets are now being used in selected patients.

Total hip replacement replaces the upper end of the femur (thighbone) and resurfaces the hip socket. The implants are designed to restore function and eliminate as much discomfort as possible while allowing you to return to a more active lifestyle.

Total hip replacement is an operation designed to replace a hip joint that has been damaged, usually by arthritis. The hip joint is a ball and socket joint. The ball is formed by the head of the femur and fits snugly into the hip socket.

       A Healthy Hip                                           An Arthritic Hip


The surfaces of these bones are coated by a smooth substance known as articular cartilage. Arthritis causes the articular cartilage to wear, exposing the underlying bone. This is shown in the diagram to the right, "Arthritic Hip".  Arthritis can cause pain, deformity and loss of mobility.

In a total hip replacement operation, the Surgeon replaces the worn head of the thigh bone with a metal or ceramic ball mounted on a stem, while the socket is resurfaced with a polyethylene or polyethylene lined metal cup. The prosthesis may be cemented in place with a filler or grout similar to dental cement, or securely pressed into place using no cement.

Biomet provides a wide range of implant choices and sizes available. Our goal is to provide designs that will address a wide range of patients' conditions and different anatomy. Only your Orthopaedic Surgeon can tell you if you're a candidate for joint replacement surgery, and if so, which implant is right for your specific needs.


Hip Resurfacing

Hip resurfacing involves replacing the diseased or damaged surfaces in the hip joint (that is on top of the thigh bone and inside the socket of the hip bone) with metal surfaces. The operation is called metal on metal hip resurfacing.

The operation is generally recommended if you are under 65 with advanced hip disease and would otherwise out live a conventional hip replacement operation. Less bone is removed for hip resurfacing, making it easier to repeat the operation or to have a further total hip joint replacement in later years. A hip resurfacing operation can help improve quality of life, however it is not suitable for everyone.


>> Hip Replacement Options

>> Who Needs Hip Replacement Surgery?


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