If you’ve put off surgery due to the pandemic, it’s time to talk to your doctor again.
More people than ever before are interested in staying active and enjoying life to its fullest as they age – well into their 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and beyond. But if you experience chronic hip pain, staying active may be difficult. In some cases, pain and stiffness may impact activities of daily living. You may have even thought about hip replacement surgery if other means of managing your pain and limited mobility haven’t worked.
If you had already decided with your doctor that hip replacement was your best option for returning to a pain-free and active life, but put your plans on hold when the pandemic hit, now is a good time to schedule your surgery. Hospitals are taking precautions to keep patients and staff as safe as possible from COVID-19. If you haven’t yet discussed hip replacement with your doctor but experience chronic pain and stiffness in your hip, it may be time to find out if hip replacement surgery is right for you.
About 400,000 hip replacements are performed in the U.S. each year. It used to be that age was a major factor in determining if hip replacement was a good option for managing chronic hip pain that doesn’t respond to other treatments. That’s because most replacements used to only last about 10 years. But today’s replacement joints are more durable and last longer than those used in the past. That’s why doctors have found that hip replacement surgery can be a good option for healthy younger patients. In fact, the number of people having hip resurfacing and hip replacement surgery in their 40’s and 50’s has been on the rise in recent years.
Osteoarthritis, a degenerative condition affecting the cartilage around the joints, is the primary reason for needing hip replacement surgery. More and more people have hip pain at younger ages as a result of the active lifestyles they lead. Avid runners, tennis players, golfers, dancers and other athletes put strain on the hip joint that can lead to damage and pain. Being overweight also puts more stress and strain on the joints.
As we push our bodies to the limit, we tend to wear out our joints at an earlier age. Hip surgery is still a last resort option, reserved for when other treatments have failed. But if pain and stiffness limit your mobility and stop you from doing the things you want to do, it may be time to talk to your doctor about whether it’s time to consider hip resurfacing or total hip replacement surgery.
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Date Last Reviewed: August 25, 2020
Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor
Medical Review: Perry Pitkow, MD