Hip Implants: Know Them Before You Get Them

Hip implant surgery is important if a part or the whole hip becomes damaged after an injury or a disease or wear downs after a disease related to joint. To have the person return to normal life and get some relief from the excruciating pain, replacing the affected part becomes of pivotal importance. The hip joint is replaced with an artificial joint or implant.

Types Of Hip Implants

Depending on the severity of the condition, the doctors can opt for either one of the following types of hip implants:

  • Complete hip implant where the joint is removed and a ball is inserted. The socket is then attached by roughing a part of the bone to create the necessary space. The ball and the socket are then cemented using various techniques and materials. In some cases, the cement is not used and the bone is roughened in a special way instead that would allow it to grow on the parts of the implants.
  • Partial hip implant where only a certain part of the joint is removed.
  • Hip resurfacing is used for younger patients or to improve mobility which is affected by arthritis. It replaces the socket and resurfaces the head of the femur instead of removing it.

The Design Of The Hip Implant

There are different types of materials being used for hip implants to make them more efficient. The design, however, pretty much remains to be the same. The design of the hip implant makes use of:

  • A metal stem which is inserted into the femur. It can also be used to keep the implants in place.
  • A ball which acts like the moveable joint and gives the hip its mobility
  • A socket which is attached to the pelvis which connects the ball to the stem
  • The bearing which gives the ball a smooth surface it can rotate on. It is the part where the ball and the socket rub together. The purpose is to give Hip its:
    – Mobility
    – Flexibility
    – Range-of-motion
    – Performance
    – Durability

Materials Used For Hip Implants

Combinations of different equipment are now being used to make the designs of the hip implants more efficient. The most common ones being:

  • A metal ball which is attached to a plastic socket. This metal and plastic approach is the most widely used
  • Plastic socket with a ball made of ceramic or in some cases ceramic ball used in combination with a ceramic socket. The latter is more common for patients who lead a fairly active life or a still young.
  • A metal ball with a metal socket. This one is used for young active patients

The hip implant makes use of a major surgery, and it is important to discuss all the possible alternatives with your doctor before coming to a conclusion. A lot of health, age and lifestyle factors will come into play when it comes to deciding the type of implant and the material which is used for the implant.

Source: http://www.indianorthopaedic.com/implants/arthroplasty/hip.html

FAQs Related to Hip Implants

If you are thinking to have a hip replacement surgery, then it is important for you to know the basic of hip replacement surgery, such as the hip implants that your surgeon may be using.


Hip Implant Basics

Our hip joint comprises of two major parts, which include a femoral head (ball) at femur (the top of your thighbone) that fits into the acetabulum (a rounded socket) in your pelvis. The ball rotates within the acetabulum’s curved surface. During a hip replacement surgery, the acetabulum is replaced by an acetabular. Besides, the femoral stem is implanted into the ball (the femoral head) and the femur and is fitted in the acetabulum. This helps in connecting the leg to the hip and enables movement.

What Is A Hip Implant Made Of?

Even though there are varied models and designs of hips that are built by a number of manufacturers, but there are three major elements of an artificial hip, which includes a stem that is implanted into the thigh bone (the femur); a cup that attaches to the pelvis and a ball that is attached to the top of the femur.

The modern hip implants, famous since the 1970s, are created by combining different materials, such as metals, ceramics and plastics. The most common material used for making hip implants is cobalt chrome, titanium and stainless steel. Most of the recent hip implant devices are metal-on-metal designs, which have been created with the hope that hip surgery would last longer and provide pain-free flexibility for more years.

How Much Does It Weigh?

Your surgeon will select the implant that is most appropriate for you and fits your anatomy, and lifestyle. Generally, a complete hip system (liner, shell, head and stem) weighs between 1 to 2 pounds, which depends on the kind of material that is used.

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Hip Surgery – Providing Relief to your Hip Pain

Hip Joint Replacement Surgery – An Analysis

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