Revision Hip Replacement

THE REASONS HIP REPLACEMENTS WEAR OUT

Hip replacements can wear out for a variety of reasons but by far the most common cause is 'aseptic loosening’. Aseptic loosening occurs when the hip implants become loose within the bone. A loose hip implant tends to be painful, and usually requires revision hip replacement.

Other causes of a wear include infection, breaking of the prosthesis, breaking of the bone around the prosthesis, and other complications. Depending on the cause of the implant failing, treatment other than revision hip replacement may be needed. For example, in the case of infection, the hip replacement may need to be removed to treat the infection, followed by the revision hip replacement months later.

POSSIBLE PROBLEMS OF REVISION HIP REPLACEMENT

Revision hip replacements are more complicated and the outcomes are not always as good as the initial hip replacement. Problems include the quality of the bone and the ability to adequately secure the revision hip replacements into position. Removal of the artificial joint is not an easy or straightforward matter, and complications can occur as the surgeon tries to remove the implant and all the cement.

Revision hip replacement must be carefully considered and planned and the options discussed with your orthopaedic surgeon.

THE SURGERY

Your surgeon will determine the exact surgical method to be used, taking into account the particulars of your individual case and decide on the type and size of the new prosthesis. An effort is made to determine whether you will need additional bone grafts or other procedures to improve the quality of bone and tissue in the joint. If the joint has been damaged by infection, your surgeon will explain the need for the surgery to be carried out in two stages. Surgery is usually performed through the same incision but may need some extension and will take longer than for a standard hip replacement.

FOLLOWING SURGERY

Revision total hip replacement takes longer than a standard total hip replacement and has a slightly higher complication rate. The prosthesis may also not last as long as a primary hip replacement.