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Hip resurfacing ‘not suitable’ for women – Health – Halifax Courier.

Hip resurfacing ‘not suitable’ for women

Published on Thursday 4 October 2012 12:10

“Surgeons should stop carrying out a common type of hip replacement operation on women because of ‘unacceptably high’ failure rates,” The Daily Telegraph newspaper reported today.

The current news is based on a large study that examined data on nearly half a million hip resurfacing operations carried out over a seven-year period in England and Wales.

Hip replacements are common and normally safe and effective. However, one practical drawback is that artificial hips can wear out after 10 to 15 years, requiring further surgery (known as revision surgery). This type of surgery can be more challenging to carry out, so therefore the outcomes can be poorer.

An alternative technique, known as hip resurfacing, has been used in “young-ish adults” aged 55 or younger. This involves removing the damaged surfaces of the bones inside the hip joint and replacing them with a metal surface. This approach is less invasive and leaves the patient with a greater range of movement after surgery. More of the bone is left in the hip joint, so it is believed that the resurfaced joints last longer.

The results of the new study show that hip resurfacing in women resulted in poorer implant survival compared with total hip replacement, irrespective of the size of the implant used. The failure rate of some types of joints was as high as one-in-nine.

In general, hip resurfacing also performed worse in men, except in those with the largest hip bones. Following these findings the researchers recommended that routine resurfacing is not undertaken in women and that the suitability for the procedure is assessed in men before use.