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There are different types of arthritis that can affect the hip. The type of arthritis you have may affect your treatment options.
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There is no cure for any type of arthritis, but there are ways to treat the pain and other associated symptoms.
Treatment should begin with the most basic steps and progress to the more invasive, possibly including surgery. Not all treatments are appropriate for every patient, and you should have a discussion with your doctor to determine which treatments are appropriate for your particular situation. Following is the range of options.
Total Hip Replacement
Hip replacement is a surgical procedure in which the hip joint is replaced by a prosthetic implant. Hip replacement surgery can be performed as a total replacement or a semi (half) replacement. Such joint replacement orthopedic surgery is generally conducted to relieve arthritis pain or in some hip fractures. A total hip replacement (total hip arthroplasty) consists of replacing both the acetabulum and the femoral head while hemiarthroplasty generally only replaces the femoral head. Hip replacement is currently the most common orthopedic operation, though patient satisfaction short- and long-term varies widely.
1. The damaged femoral head is removed and replaced with a metal stem that is placed into the hollow center of the femur. The femoral stem may be either cemented or “press-fit” into the bone. A metal or ceramic ball is placed on the upper part of the stem. This ball replaces the damaged femoral head that was removed.
2. The damaged cartilage surface of the socket (acetabulum) is removed and replaced with a metal socket. Screws or cement are sometimes used to hold the socket in place.
3. A plastic, ceramic, or metal spacer is inserted between the new ball and the socket to allow for a smooth gliding surface.
The decision to proceed with THR surgery is a cooperative one between you, your surgeon, your family and your local doctor. Benefits of surgery include:
1. Reduced hip pain
2. Increased mobility and movement
3. Correction of deformity
4. Equalization of leg length (not guaranteed)
5. Increased leg strength
6. Improved quality of life, ability to return to normal activities
7. Enables you to sleep without pain