FAQ – Hip Replacement


What is Hip Replacement procedure all about?

In the hip replacement procedure, the hip joints which are damaged or injured severely are removed and a prosthetic implant is affixed at that place. It is a complete surgical process which is an open and major surgery but according to the requirement of the patient’s body, the type of replacement that is partial or total hip replacement is opted for.

Hip joints are very much affected by the arthritis and that is why when the pain become a nightmare for the patient, the doctor prescribe for the replace surgery for betterment of the patient and reduction of the pain. The hip replacement is also opt by the doctors, when the hip bones fracture or the joints are affected through an injury of major manner and to provide relief to the patient, replacement remains as the only option. The replacement of the hip joints and bones is one of the most popular surgeries at present time under the orthopaedic department as per the records. It is advisable to see a doctor when you are suffering from the joint pain at the hips because minor pains in that area can further lead to the development of osteoarthritis.

What are the different kinds of Hip Replacement surgery?

Under the modern medical sciences, there are two types of replacement surgery for the hip. The first one is partial replacement of the hip bone or joints and the second one is the complete replacement. In the partial replacement, only the femoral head is replace which is also known as hemi-arthroplasty where as in the complete or total replacement procedure, the femoral as well as the acetabulum is replaced.

What are the reasons/causes behind damage of hip joints?

The most popular reasons for this disease are as follows:

  1. Age
  2. Infection
  • Arthritis
  1. Accidents
  2. Fractures
  3. Calcium deficiency and
  • Hereditary problems.

How hip replacement surgeries are approached?

There are different approaches adapted by the medical practitioners for the replacement of the hip joints and they are enumerated below:

  1. Most common approach is the lateral approach where the height of the gluteus minimus and medius is required for the joint replacement.
  2. The most efficient approach is the posterior approach as suggested by the doctors. In this process, the focus remains on the joints of the hip and the capsule by the help of the back of the patient along with the use of the femur’s piriformis muscle and the short external rotators.
  • The gap between the Sartorius muscle and the tensor fasciae latae is used in the anterior approach.
  1. The gap between the tensor fasciae latae and the gluteus medius is developed by use of the antero-lateral approach.
  2. The MIS or the minimal invasive surgery is helpful in reduction of the damage of the elastic tissue during the surgery because the incision made is little in size.


What are the risks associated with the Hip replacement surgery?

The risks which are there in a hip replacement surgery are as follows:

  1. Osteolysis
  2. Thrombosis of the veins
  • Fracture of the bones of hips
  1. Dislocation of the hip bone
  2. Metal toxicity
  3. Nerve palsy
  • Different length of the legs
  • Sensitivity to the metals.

What are the symptoms of hip joint damage?

You must check with a doctor when you feel pain in and around your hip portion but the general symptoms which indicates damage of the hip joints are as follows:

  1. Unbearable pain and at times feverish symptoms
  2. Unstoppable pain
  • Hips joints swells up
  1. Difficulty in sitting for a long time period
  2. Walking is also problematic; and
  3. Weakening of the hip joints.


What is the difference between hip replacement surgery and the resurfacing of the hip joints?

In resurfacing, the bones which are to be eliminated or removed are less in number than that is in Total Hip replacement and is also known as bone conservation. The femoral head also doesn’t get affected much because of the size which is large and the hip dislocation is avoided. Since the doctors will get access to the bones easily, the following revision surgeries would become easier and less risky.

What does a computer navigated surgery mean?

It is a process which makes the surgeries easier for the doctors and the surgeons by the use of the CAS systems. For total hip replacement, this process is accessed by many doctors across the globe where the computers are used to guide the doctors and the level of accuracy of the surgeries is also increased due to this reason.

What are the after cares for hip replacement surgery?

The after care is necessary and the patient after the surgery must keep following up with the doctor. He or she has to follow the instructions given to them and proper intake or drugs and other therapies must be done to avoid the risks associated with the post-surgical phase.

What are the recommendations of the doctor?

The doctors normally recommend taking antibiotics and other drugs to avoid any chances of having infections both at pre and post-surgery phase. There are chances of infection to be spread across the body which has to be avoided by the use of the drugs at proper time as otherwise there might be acute problems.

Dr Dhananjay Gupta

Dr Dhananjay Gupta
Director and Senior Consultant,
Orthopaedics and Joint Reconstruction and Replacement Surgeon
Fortis Flt. Lt. Rajan Dhall Hospital, Vasant Kunj, Delhi.