Hip resurfacing can be an excellent alternative to traditional total hip replacement for young, active people who have good bone strength.

The hip joint is a ball and socket joint, where the ball (femoral head) of the thigh bone fits into the socket (acetabulum) of the pelvis bone. In traditional hip replacement surgery, both the ball and socket are removed and replaced with plastic, metal, or ceramic prosthetics.

Hip damage can often be treated with hip resurfacing surgery in an effort to preserve more of the thigh bone. This involves sculpting the femoral head (instead of removing it), capping it with a metal prosthetic, and fitting the socket with a metal cup.

Because hip resurfacing removes less bone, it may be advantageous for younger patients (under age 60) who may need a second, or revision, hip replacement surgery as they grow older and wear out the original artificial joint.

Generally speaking, the best candidates for hip resurfacing are younger, larger-framed patients with strong, healthy bones around the hip joint. Patients with severe arthritis or osteoporosis are not candidates for hip resurfacing.

Lancaster Orthopedic Group has expert hip specialists who can assess whether you would be a good candidate for hip resurfacing.