A hip replacement involves removing the diseased surface of the ball and socket of the hip and replacing it with an artificial lining. There is typically a stem that goes into the canal of the femur that has the new ball attached. The stem is usually titanium and the ball is chromium cobalt alloy or ceramic. The socket fits into the pelvis and is also chromium cobalt alloy or titanium. There is a bearing surface between the ball and socket that can be very dense plastic or ceramic. The replacement we use actually allows the bearing to move in the socket, which decreases wear and improves mobility.
We almost always perform our hip replacements using a Direct Anterior approach. This technique allows the procedure to be done without cutting any muscles, allowing patients to walk normally and return to normal activities much faster than older techniques without the need for most precautions such as pillows between the legs, raised chairs and commodes.