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How Long Will My Hip Replacement Last?

September 18, 2023

For those of us with extra wear and tear on our joints, hip replacements offer a new lease on an active lifestyle.

But will they last forever?

Here’s how long you can expect your hip replacement to last, and when hip revision might be necessary, according to John Irving, MD, orthopedic surgeon at Connecticut Orthopaedic Institute at MidState Medical Center.

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Hip replacements can last a long time.

“Longer than before, thanks to new technology and techniques,” says Dr. Irving. “A hip replacement can last between 10 and 20 years, and some can last even longer. The type of implant and the age of the patient can impact affect how long it lasts.”

> Related: Am I Too Young to Get My Knee or Hip Replaced? What to Consider in Your 40s and 50s

But sometimes, they do fail.

However, hip replacements can still fail for a variety of reasons, says Dr. Irving.

When this happens, your doctor may recommend you have a second operation to remove some or all parts of the original prosthesis and replace them with new ones – a procedure called revision total hip replacement or hip revision.

This second operation may involve a partial or complete exchange of the prosthesis implanted during the original surgery.

“Hip revision surgery is more complex than the original hip replacement procedure, and it could take longer for an orthopedic surgeon to perform it. The procedure process also depends on the reason for the surgery and the severity, which will vary from patient to patient,” he explains.

> Related: Am I Too Old to Get My Knee or Hip Replaced? What to Consider at Age 70, 80 and Up

4 signs you might need hip revision surgery

The most important factor in deciding whether or not to have hip revision is to look at how much it hurts and how much it is affecting your life.

Four common reasons Dr. Irving says a patient might need hip revision surgery are:

  1. Recurring dislocation of the hip.
  2. Wear and tear, including loosening or breakage of prosthesis components.
  3. Infection.
  4. Fracture.

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How is recovery for hip revision surgery?

The recovery process for hip revision surgery will be similar to what you experienced with the original hip replacement, but it may be a longer process, Dr. Irving notes.

Most patients stay in the hospital for a few days after surgery. Physical therapy is an important part of recovery, which should take 6-8 weeks, he says.