There are a number of conditions that can result in a patient having to undergo hip replacement surgery. Perhaps the most common condition is osteoarthritis that is commonly referred to as ‘wear and tear arthritis’. Osteoarthritis can occur with no previous history of injury to the hip joint. The hip simply ‘wears out’. There may be a genetic tendency in some people that increases their chances of developing osteoarthritis.
Avascular necrosis is another condition that could lead to hip replacement surgery. In this condition, the femoral head (ball) loses a portion of its blood supply and actually dies. This leads to the collapse of the femoral head and degeneration of the hip joint. Avascular necrosis has been linked to alcoholism, fractures, and dislocations of the hip, and long-term cortisone treatment for other diseases.
Abnormalities of hip joint function resulting from trauma to the hip, fracture of the hip, and some types of hip conditions that appear in childhood, such as congenital dysplasia of the hip (CDH) can lead to degeneration many years later. The mechanical abnormality leads to excessive wear and tear.
There is a number of ways in which the pain in your hip can be relieved. These can include changes in lifestyle or taking pain-relieving medications. Another option is an operation to replace your hip joint. Replacing the hip joint is usually recommended when the pain becomes so constant that it is limiting your everyday activities and when you and your doctor agree that it is the best course of action.