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How are hip replacements made?

How Are Hip Replacements Made?

If you’re considering hip replacement surgery, have you ever thought about the components of a modern hip replacement? Read our guide with expert advice from Mr Matthew Oliver, Consultant Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgeon.

If you’re considering talking to a specialist about the possibility of hip replacement surgery, or you’re already due for a hip replacement, then you may want to find out what to expect. To help ensure that you have all the hip replacement information you need, we’ve put together a quick guide to hip replacements; why you might need one, how they’re carried out and what they’re made from. 

What materials are used in an artificial hip replacement?

Artificial hips are made up of a variety if components and are made from a range of metal and strong plastic materials including titanium, cobalt chrome and stainless steel.

These materials help the hip work well inside your body without causing any harm. The main parts are a metal shell that gets placed in your hip socket, a plastic liner inside the shell, and a metal stem that goes into your thigh bone.

You can discuss the type of implant that’s best for you with your Consultant and use this opportunity to ask any questions or voice any concerns that you may have. This is an important consideration as the material of your implant may affect how long it will last.

What are the different types of artificial hip joints?

Hip replacements come in a range of different styles, using different materials and may be described as metal on polyceramic on poly or ceramic on ceramic.

Right: ceramic femoral head; Left: cemented hip replacement

Mr Oliver describes the above: "The picture on the right is a ceramic femoral head and the implant there is called the Corail® Pinnacle® hip replacement implant, which is commonly used here at Benenden Hospital. It's an extremely popular hip replacement with excellent clinical heritage and survivorship.

"The picture on the left is a cemented hip replacement. There's a highly polished stem there, and as you can see, it has a little centralizer on the bottom there to ensure that it goes in the correct position in the patient's femoral canal, so the cement goes around it in an even manner".

Your Consultant will discuss these options with you and use the implant type that best meets your needs

How long will a hip replacement last?

The durability of the implant also depends on the material and its design. The NHS states that hip replacements are designed to last up to 15 years. However, there’s new evidence to suggest that they last longer. Researchers at the University of Bristol found that 58% of hip replacements last up to 25 years.

Mr Oliver advises: "If you're around the age of 70 and you have your hip replacement and everything goes to plan, it's unlikely that you'll need to ever worry about having a hip revision. In the younger generation, the 50- to 60-year-old group where they're more active on their hip, it is likely to not last them their lifetime. That said there are some hip replacements that are in people that are 40 plus years old now and they're still going strong."

Hip replacement surgery at Benenden Hospital

If you have a question about hip replacement surgery, or would like to discuss any of our other treatments and procedures, we’re ready to help. As one of the leading centres in Kent for hip and knee surgery, we have the experience to answer any questions you may have, whether you’re only recently experiencing hip discomfort or you’re awaiting surgery. 

Mr Oliver mentions: "The first thing to say about Benenden Hospital is that it's rated Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission. It's very difficult to achieve that outstanding rating, and there are very few hospitals that have managed to hold on to it year after year. In the last year, we managed to replace just over a thousand joint replacements, including hips and knees.

"There's an excellent work ethic across the board, from the porters, the cleaners, the kitchen staff, the nurses, the scrub team, the administrative staff and the pre-assessment. Everybody is very happy to come to work and provide an excellent service. On top of that, you have experienced physiotherapists, and my orthopaedic colleagues here also have a wealth of experience in lower limb degenerative conditions.

"Consistently, our hospital achieves really high patient satisfaction rates, and this is evident from Doctify, which is an online platform where patients can leave reviews about the hospital in general, individual reviews about surgeons, treatments, and tests.”

If you have any questions regarding hip replacement surgery and the options available, complete our online enquiry form or get in touch with our Private Patient Team using our Livechat or by calling 01580 363158.

Published on 15 May 2024