Am I Too Young for Total Hip Replacement Surgery?

September 29, 2022 2:00 pm Published by

hip replacement

You’re in your early 40s and have persistent hip pain. An orthopaedic specialist thinks you may need a hip replacement. But when it comes to total hip replacement surgery, how young is too young?

In the past, procedures like hip and knee replacements were often not considered options for younger patients. But that’s changing.

Why Total Hip Replacement Might Be Needed

Physicians typically recommend total hip replacement surgery when you’re experiencing intense, severe pain and hip stiffness that isn’t relieved by less-invasive treatment options. While osteoarthritis is the most frequent cause of this type of hip discomfort, you may need a hip joint replacement due to injury or bone-related diseases.

All causes of hip damage are more common among those in middle age and beyond, but they can also affect younger adults. Some begin to experience the effects of arthritis in their 20s and 30s, and others experience hip pain and diminished mobility due to other factors, such as a sports-related hip injury.

What Happens During Total Hip Replacement

If you’re experiencing recurrent hip pain, talk with your provider about how those symptoms affect your daily life. In most cases, your provider will recommend noninvasive treatment options, such as physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications or steroidal injections.

If other treatment options don’t provide relief, you may need surgery no matter how old you are. Hip replacement surgeries can include partial hip replacement, hip resurfacing and total hip replacement. Of those, total hip replacement is the most common.

During the procedure, which is also called total hip arthroplasty, a surgeon removes sections of the pelvis and thigh bone, including the ball and the socket of the hip. This joint is replaced with an artificial joint.

Can You Be Too Young for Hip Replacement?

While a provider may recommend less-invasive treatment options for younger patients, particularly at first, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement on patients of all ages when needed.

The procedure remains most common among adults age 60 and older, but the number of younger patients having hip replacement has been steadily increasing due to the improved safety and efficacy of artificial joints, among other reasons.

The artificial joint used in total hip replacement can last for 20 years or more, making it a viable option for younger adults. When and if the artificial joint needs to be replaced, patients do not need a full hip replacement procedure. A more simplified revision surgery can be used to change out the artificial joint.

Recovery after total hip replacement has also improved in recent decades. In many cases, patients can be released from the hospital on the same day as the hip replacement. After surgery, working with a physical therapist helps patients quickly regain their abilities to move normally, and most patients are on their feet and functioning without an assistive device in just a few weeks.

When you’re in need of specialized treatment for an orthopaedic health condition, Magnolia Regional Health Center’s Orthopaedic Center of Excellence is here to help.

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This post was written by Magnolia Regional Health Center