Why Should I Have A Hip Replacement?

The main reason to have a Hip Replacement is relief of pain. When your hip joint is damaged or diseased it can be severely painful. Along with the pain, you can lose motion in your hip and have difficulty walking. It becomes harder to perform your routine activities. In short, your diseased or damaged hip interferes with the quality of your day-to-day life.

A painful hip can affect other parts of your body. You may develop back pain as you try to compensate for loss of motion in your hip. You may feel pain in your knee or in your opposite leg as you try to relieve pressure on your bad side. If your mobility is limited, you may gain weight because you are unable to exercise.

Hip replacement can relieve pain and improve the strength and motion in your hip. In some cases the results are dramatic. Many patients note that even a day or two after the procedure they have pain in their incision, but the joint pain they had before surgery is largely gone.

For most people, hip replacement surgery is elective. It is done for conditions such as osteoarthritis, which are not life threatening but affect your life in other ways. It is a procedure that is planned and scheduled ahead of time. It is not something you have to do, but is something you choose to do. Unlike an appendectomy, it is not an emergency procedure. The decision to have a hip replacement is made after consultation with an orthopaedic surgeon, but ultimately, the decision is yours.

For a few patients, hip replacement has to be done on an urgent basis. If a hip is broken (fractured), surgery should be done as soon as possible to relieve pain and allow the patient to get out of bed. Hip replacement is the treatment of choice for some fractures. Bone tumors in the hip also require urgent treatment because the tumor will continue to grow and cause further damage to the bone. There is more to hip replacement than just the surgical procedure.

There is preoperative planning, testing, and medical evaluation. After surgery there is time in the hospital, therapy, and rehabilitation. And of course life is different with an artificial joint in your body.

As you consider surgery, take time to learn about your hip, what treatment is available and why you would be a candidate for hip replacement.

Margaret K., a patient, says: My new hip felt perfectly natural and totally pain free.

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