Degenerative disease (arthritis) | Alexandros P. Tzaveas MD, MSc, PhD
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Degenerative disease (arthritis)

Degenerative disease of the hip in early stages can be treated with conservative treatment, in order to improve symptoms. Unfortunately, the degeneration of the joint can reach to a point that it is impossible to treat the pain and reduced mobility by means other than reconstructing the joint.

As arthroplasty (total hip replacement) is the replacement of the hip joint surfaces with artificial materials that aim to simulate the normal anatomy of an unreplaced hip joint. The goal of surgery is to eliminate pain and restore mobility. The effort of the orthopedic surgeon is always to delay such an intervention as much as possible, as all available materials have a certain lifetime beyond which wear occurs and it is necessary to replace them again.  Also, the aim is always to try to remove the smallest amount of bone possible, in order to retain bone stock which is necessary for a future operation.

Hip replacement is one of the most successful operations in the history of surgery. This procedure eliminates pain and disability in patients with advanced arthritis. Starting from Charnley in 1960 in Wrightington, Great Britain, hip replacement has evolved and technology has improved so that this surgical technique is no longer restricted only in elderly but also in younger patients whose arthritis limits their quality of life.

Moreover, the surgeon has now more modern options of hip arthroplasty, and not only the classical total hip replacement.