What is hip replacement surgery?
Hip replacement surgery is an operation to replace a damaged or worn hip joint with an artificial version. It is regarded as a long term solution for joint pain and immobility and is often the most effective treatment.
Why do hips need replacing?
The hip is a “ball and socket” joint which is susceptible to wear and damage. This can be caused by various forms of arthritis (most commonly osteoarthritis), bone diseases, bone abnormalities, and injury.
Why do people choose hip replacement surgery?
Due to the nature of the hip joint, damage and wear will not improve over time but will usually deteriorate. A hip replacement operation to alleviate pain and increase joint movement may therefore be the best treatment option. However, the decision to have the procedure is solely yours.
A hip replacement operation may be worthwhile for you if:
- You suffer from severe pain
- The pain and lack of mobility is diminishing your quality of life and leaves you feeling depressed
- The pain and lack of mobility leave you unable to have a social life, work or complete everyday tasks
- Medications and treatments that you have tried have failed or cause severe side effects
Benefits of hip replacement surgery
The most common benefits that patients report after the operation are:
- Reduced pain
- Improved mobility
- Improved movement of the joint
- Improvement to their quality of life
What happens in a hip replacement operation?
In the hip joint, the ball is formed by the top of the thigh bone (femur), whilst the socket is part of the pelvis. In the operation, your surgeon will remove the top part of the thigh bone, replacing it with a ball on a stem, which is inserted into the centre of the thigh bone. A plastic or metal cup will often be used to replace the socket.
Some patients choose to receive a general anaesthetic before the operation, so that they are asleep for the duration of the procedure. A hip replacement can also sometimes be performed under regional anaesthetic. The operation usually lasts two hours.
Hip replacement aftercare
After surgery, you will be required to stay in hospital for two to five nights. Your hip is likely to be sore for several weeks; however this should ease as the area heals. Hip replacement surgery is considered a generally safe surgical procedure, which, for most, has benefits that outweigh the risks. Your surgeon will explain any risks of a hip replacement and how they apply to you.
Is hip replacement surgery available on the NHS?
Hip replacements are currently being restricted by the NHS in some areas of the UK and waiting lists are becoming significantly longer. People with the most advanced symptoms of hip pain and immobility are being prioritised. For these reasons many people opt for private treatment.
Why should I consider having a hip replacement operation at a Spire hospital?
Whether you have medical insurance or are paying for your treatment yourself, with Spire Healthcare you will be seen quickly by the consultant-grade surgeon of your choice at a time that suits you. You will be treated in a premium private hospital with some of the UK's highest standards of cleanliness and infection control. What’s more, you’ll be able to recuperate in your own private room with friends and family able to visit when you wish.
To find out more about having a hip replacement privately or to get a guide price, simply