Hip replacement surgery is a procedure used to treat debilitating conditions of the hip. There are two common approaches to hip replacement: posterior approach, and anterior approach hip replacement. Depending on the specific conditions of the patient, the orthopaedist may recommend one or the other. Conditions that may necessitate hip replacement include:
- Primary osteoarthritis (degenerative joint disease)
- Post-traumatic osteoarthritis (arthritis that develops after a fracture)
- Avascular necrosis (osteonecrosis)
- Hip dysplasia
- Rheumatoid arthritis
During the hip replacement procedure, the damaged joint surfaces of the ball and socket are removed and replaced with an implant. The femoral component is a metal prosthesis inserted into the femur. The acetabular (socket) component is a metal cup placed into the pelvis.
A bearing surface is then attached to both implants. These bearing surfaces can come from different materials. Usually, the acetabular bearing is plastic (polyethylene). The ball on the femoral component can be either metal or ceramic.