What is Hip Revision?

Jacquelyn Gilchrist
Jacquelyn Gilchrist
An X-ray of the pelvic area, showing a total hip replacement.
An X-ray of the pelvic area, showing a total hip replacement.

Hip revision is a surgical procedure in which an artificial hip is removed and replaced with a new prosthesis, or man-made joint. Artificial hips typically last for about 10 to 15 years. They may need to be replaced due to wear-and-tear. Sometimes, they may require replacement if they have become damaged, or if the tissues surrounding them have become infected.

Hip revision can alleviate joint pain.
Hip revision can alleviate joint pain.

This surgery can relieve pain caused by a damaged or loose prosthesis. It can also restore mobility. If a damaged prosthesis is not removed, it can irritate and inflame the surrounding tissues. In turn, this can cause osteolysis, or a dissolving of the bone.

Not all patients are considered to be good candidates for hip revision surgery. Therefore, each case is evaluated individually. A doctor may recommend against undergoing this procedure if the patient has a terminal illness or a severe mental disorder, such as dementia. Patients who are severely obese or have paralyzed muscles may also be poor candidates.

Failure of the prosthetic joint is a long-term hip replacement complication requiring a second surgery.
Failure of the prosthetic joint is a long-term hip replacement complication requiring a second surgery.

In order for hip revision surgery to go smoothly, patients should actively prepare for recovery. It may be helpful for one to have someone to help them with daily routines during recovery. Possible obstructions to mobility should also be removed, such as loose rugs. Patients will also likely need to avoid climbing stairs during initial recovery.

Before the hip revision surgery, patients generally undergo a series of tests. A doctor may recommend blood screenings, x-rays, and bone scans to ensure the health of the patient. The surgeon will also need to know about all medications and supplements the patient is taking.

Hip revision is usually a complicated procedure that can take between five and eight hours to perform.
Hip revision is usually a complicated procedure that can take between five and eight hours to perform.

Hip revision surgery is often a complicated procedure that may take as long as five to eight hours. Each operation is tailored to the individual needs of the patient, depending on the type of damage and its extent. In general, however, the surgeon begins by removing the old artificial hip. The socket will then be cleaned and prepared for the new prosthesis.

If the surgery is being performed during an active infection, the new prosthesis will not be implanted immediately. The joint is first treated with antibiotics. After the infection clears up, the surgeon can implant the new hip.

Patients may stay in the hospital for three to seven days following surgery, provided there are no complications. After this, they may go to a rehabilitation center for between five and 14 days. Patients usually need to work with a physical therapist to ensure mobility and facilitate full recovery.

While hip revision surgery can improve the quality of life, patients should be aware of the potential risks involved. Blood clots may form in the legs. There is also a risk of pneumonia and infection, as well as adverse reactions to anesthesia. In some cases, another surgery may be needed if the first hip revision fails.

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    • An X-ray of the pelvic area, showing a total hip replacement.
      An X-ray of the pelvic area, showing a total hip replacement.
    • Hip revision can alleviate joint pain.
      Hip revision can alleviate joint pain.
    • Failure of the prosthetic joint is a long-term hip replacement complication requiring a second surgery.
      Failure of the prosthetic joint is a long-term hip replacement complication requiring a second surgery.
    • Hip revision is usually a complicated procedure that can take between five and eight hours to perform.
      Hip revision is usually a complicated procedure that can take between five and eight hours to perform.