After having a successful hip replacement, you’re finally back doing the things you love. Golfing, gardening, swimming, shopping, and taking your motorcycle out for a drive. You’re moving and grooving but for how long?
If you are wondering how long your new hip will last, rest easy. Some studies show that hip replacements can last more than 20 years. The world of orthopedic implants is evolving at a quick pace with implant manufacturers constantly striving to create better implants that last longer. Some of the newer technology hasn’t been around long enough to supply data on longevity but there are high hopes that the newer implants will last for quite some time.
One thing we do know is that the lifespan of an artificial hip is dependent on the patient and how they take care of it. The more miles you put on your car, the quicker it wears out. The same can be said for a hip replacement. The longevity of your hip is directly impacted by the wear and tear you place on it.
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Maintaining your hip replacement
Some things you can do to maintain your new hip are:
Stay Active Playing your favorite sports and exercising can help maintain a healthy hip but avoid repetitive, high-impact activities.
Drop excess weight The more a person weighs, the more stress that is placed on the new joint replacement.
Steer clear of certain positions Avoid crossing your legs or sitting too low in chairs to prevent dislocation. Understand and respect the limitations of your artificial joint.
Take antibiotics as prescribed Even if you are prescribed antibiotics for another illness or area of the body, make sure you take all of your antibiotics as prescribed to prevent the spread of any infection to your hip.
Check-in Every few years, schedule a follow up visit with your orthopedic provider and follow their instructions and advice for resuming sporting activities and other activities that could place stress on your hip.
Hip revision surgery
Even when you take every precaution, no one can predict how long your hip replacement will last. There are so many factors that differ from individual to individual. Although research paints an optimistic picture for the longevity of hip replacements, there is the possibility that after many years of use, the hip could wear out. With people living longer and longer, this is a possibility especially for younger patients because they can outlive their joint replacement. Hip revision surgery may be the next step if this occurs.
Other factors could also lead to requiring hip revision surgery. Frequent or recurring hip dislocations, fractures, metal allergies or other reactions, infections, or trauma from an accident can lead to needing revision surgery. But on a brighter note, some research has shown that only about 2% of hip replacements required a second surgery within 5 years of the initial replacement.
Are you ready to kick your hip pain?
If you have been experiencing hip pain, discomfort, and forced absence from the activities you enjoy, it may be time to consider a visit to your orthopedic provider to discuss treatment options.
Our fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeons at CMC Orthopaedics perform all types of surgeries, including total hip replacements and revision surgeries. Our doctors and specialists use the best surgical techniques, advanced rehabilitation tools, and pain management therapies to provide you with effective results with the least amount of pain and downtime.