REPLACE OR RESURFACE?
ANCHOR LEAD: IS HIP RESURFACING SUPERIOR TO HIP REPLACEMENT? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
A less drastic alternative to hip replacement surgery is hip resurfacing, where only the parts of bones that rub against each other are replaced. Marc Hungerford, an orthopedic surgeon at Johns Hopkins, says improvements in hip replacement prostheses may obviate the benefits of resurfacing.
HUNGERFORD: When these were developed, and the development has kind of gone in parallel with hip replacements, the failure rate of total hip replacements in young patients was quite high, so there was a lot of room for improvement. That’s why the idea of preserve the bone, just put a cap on, don’t cut it off, don’t put a stem in, gained traction, but over thirty years the total hip has been continually refined, and really now it’s very very good. :25
Hungerford says that minimally invasive surgical techniques also make recovery from hip replacement faster and lessen physical therapy requirements. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.