Over time, cartilage in the hip can wear away or become damaged, causing the bones to rub and grind together. This causes much of the pain and stiffness patients feel. Although people frequently associate joint pain with an injury or fracture to the hip, other common causes of a damaged hip include:
- Breakdown of the joint's cartilage (osteoarthritis)
- Cartilage injuries
- Decay of the bone from long-term use of alcohol or steroids (necrosis)
- Hip impingement
- Inflamed and stiff cartilages (rheumatoid arthritis or gout)
- Labral tears
- Loose bodies in the joint
Many hip problems can be managed with physical therapy and rehabilitation; however, depending on your situation, your doctor may recommend surgery or a replacement.
At MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center, we offer a hip replacement program that includes a hip replacement education class. This is just part of our continuum of care that continues from initial evaluation through post-operative care.
The goal of hip replacement surgery is to help relieve your pain and improve your quality of life. In a total hip replacement surgery, the painful parts of the damaged hip are replaced with artificial hip parts called a prosthesis, a device that substitutes or supplements a joint. The prosthesis consists of three components: a socket, ball, and stem. The outer shell of the socket is usually made of metal and the inner shell consists of plastic. When the metal ball is joined with the socket, the new hip allows for smooth, nearly frictionless movement.
Hip replacement patients can choose to participate in our Bloodless Medicine and Surgery Program.
The recovery process from total hip replacement will take time. Your orthopaedic surgeon will work with you to develop a rehabilitation plan that begins while you’re still in the hospital and continues until you feel completely healed. Typical recoveries include physical therapy exercises to regain your strength, pain management, and learning safe new ways to move and bend.
Hip replacements are designed to last your entire life. However, replacements can wear out due to natural use over time, or to an infection that can develop in nearby tissues. Hip revisions remove old hip implants that may have become a problem, and replace them with new ones. This surgery requires extraordinary skill to remedy the initial replacement—MedStar orthopaedic surgeons in both the central Maryland and Washington regions have the requisite expertise and surgical skill to perform such an important procedure.