Hip Joint Replacement

Many of us will experience hip pain during our lifetime. As you get older your hips age with you, and some aches and pains are normal. But if hip pain prevents you from walking, climbing stairs or keeping up with your grandkids, hip replacement surgery may help where other treatments have failed.

Understanding the Hip Joint

Your hip is an important joint. It bears much of your body’s weight and helps you move your legs.

The hip is called a ball-and-socket joint because of the way your bones fit together. The end of your thigh bone has a rounded shape, like a ball. It fits into a bowl-shaped depression (socket) in your pelvis. A layer of slippery tissue called cartilage connects these bones and helps them glide against each other.

Causes of Hip Pain

People can have hip pain for several reasons:

  • Joint degeneration occurs when cartilage wears away over time, due to normal wear-and-tear.
  • Medical conditions such as arthritis cause joint inflammation and can speed up cartilage loss. As cartilage disappears, causing bone to rub against bone, we feel pain, stiffness and swelling.
  • Long-term damage from injuries such as a hip fracture.

Mild hip pain may be managed with medication, physical therapy or walking aids that support your weight (like a cane). But if your pain gets worse, it can interfere with normal activity. You may have trouble standing up, getting in and out of bed or walking short distances.

About Hip Replacement Surgery

Hip replacement surgery replaces the worn-out or damaged parts of your hip with artificial parts. These parts are sometimes called an implant or prosthesis. They may be metal, ceramic or plastic.

After recovering from surgery most patients report little or no pain, and improved mobility. And thanks to modern design and materials, today’s implants may last 10-20 years before needing replacement.

Hip Replacement Surgery at Mercy

Mercy’s orthopedic surgeons have a long track record of success with hip replacement surgery. We’ve helped thousands of patients get back on their feet through:

Don’t let hip pain hold you back. Talk to your Mercy physician today about your treatment options. Together we’ll decide what’s right for you, and take the next steps toward your pain-free future.

Download a Hip Replacement Guide

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