A Checklist to Determine: Do I Need Total Hip Replacement?

A Checklist to Determine: Do I Need Total Hip Replacement?

Fabio R. Orozco, M.D. September 3rd, 2014

Hip pain is a common complaint among active, elderly or injured patients who are dealing with damaged cartilage or fractured bones. Dozens of potential treatment options exist, including many non-surgical approaches and for many people, those options will solve the issue in time. While not everyone who experiences hip pain will require hip replacement, it is certainly the best option in some cases. You may be wondering if you are one of those cases. If you’ve been wondering, “do I need total hip replacement?” then this article can serve as a guide to help you identify whether you may be a good candidate for this surgical procedure.

Why Do I Need Total Hip Replacement?

There are a few common reasons that patients find themselves preparing for hip replacement surgery. You may find that you fall into one of the following categories:

Osteoarthritis: The majority of hip problems are the result of osteoarthritis. This is the most common source of the chronic hip pain that plagues many patients. Arthritis in general affects over 40 million Americans, so it’s no surprise that it is a primary culprit of pain in the hip, which is one of the largest and most frequently used joints of the body. Osteoarthritis occurs when cartilage in the joint becomes worn down and bone-on-bone contact generates chronic pain. This problem is most common in older patients or in those who have experienced excessive wear and tear over the years (worked for years doing manual labor or played sports competitively).

Hip Injuries: In some cases, a fractured or broken hip may heal, but leave the patient with a higher chance of degeneration as the years go on. Decades of wear and tear on a hip that once sustained a serious injury can result in the need for surgical replacement.

Now, let’s begin by setting your mind at ease. The decision to get a total hip replacement is a personal one and should be decided upon by you and your physician. When you visit a qualified specialist, like the doctors at Rothman Institute, you’ll be guided through the consultations and physical exams that will help you to identify the best course of treatment and answer the question, “do I need total hip replacement?” If, in the end, it is decided that hip replacement surgery is the best solution for your case, then take confidence in the fact that this is actually now considered to be a routinely performed procedure that offers high rates of success and great results for patients. Nearly a million people worldwide each year benefit from the advanced technology that now makes hip surgeries so common and successful.

For now, read through the list below to determine whether you may be a good candidate for hip replacement surgery. Remember, this is a personal choice and you know your body best. When your pain reaches a point that your quality of life is diminished and your ability to perform common, daily tasks is compromised, then it is probably time to talk to your doctor about a surgical solution. The good news is that for most people who have hip replacements done, the procedure offers an immediate relief of pain, increase in mobility and overall improved quality of life.

A Checklist to Determine: Do I Need Total Hip Replacement?

  • Is hip pain causing you sleep loss?
  • Do you have difficulty walking up stairs?
  • Can you feel a “grinding” or “grating” of your hip joint?
  • Is your range of motion (bending from the hip and extension of the legs) limited?
  • Do you experience stiffness and swelling, especially after sitting for longer periods?
  • Is your hip pain persistent, but worsened by activity and exercise?
  • Have you already tried pain medication and non operative treatments with no improvement to your pain level?
  • Is hip pain preventing you from leading the kind of healthy, active life that you want or is affecting your quality of life?

You don’t have to live with chronic hip pain. Rothman Institute surgeons are some of the nation’s top specialists in the field of orthopedics and they’ve mastered the art and science of total hip replacement surgery. Call today to make an appointment!

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