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A total hip replacement is a surgical procedure where the diseased and painful bone and cartilage of the hip joint is removed and replaced with an artificial joint usually made of metal and plastic components. The surgery is usually performed due to progressive worsening of arthritis in the hip joint of the patient. The chronic pain combined with the impairment of regular functions like walking, standing up or climbing stairs are the main reason for a person to opt for a total hip replacement surgery. The surgery is usually considered when the patient has tried all other means of medication and the pain becomes severe. The total hip replacement surgery aims to relieve the pain in the hip joint, allowing the person to walk easily.

Depending upon the size of incision the total hip replacement surgery can be done through minimally invasive technique or by traditional technique. Under the traditional hip replacement technique the incision is made along the side of the hip and the ball portion of the hip joint is removed and an artificial joint is attached to the thigh bone through some special material. The surgeon would then remove the damaged cartilage and attach the replacing socket part to the hipbone. While the traditional surgery involves incisions to be made of about 8-10 inches, the minimally invasive technique would require the surgeon to make one to two incisions of about 3-5 inches long. Though the procedure involved in both the techniques is same, the minimally invasive surgery is performed to reduce blood loss, ease the pain after surgery, limit the scar appearance and speed up the healing process.

The hip replacement surgery is performed under general anesthesia with major cases arise out of age-related issues, so the patients opting for the surgery are usually between the age of 60-80 years. The surgery takes a couple of hours but the recovery process is slow and the patient is required to stay in the hospital for 4-5 days following the surgery. For the first few weeks post-surgery, the patient would require walking aid for support and after 2-3 months most of them are able to resume their normal activities. The risks associated with the hip replacement surgery are very limited but there are some complications like infection, hip dislocation, fractures, injuries etc. associated with the surgery.


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