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Understanding the Procedure: What to Expect from Double Hip Replacement Surgery



Understanding the Procedure: What to Expect from Double Hip Replacement Surgery

Relief from persistent pain and restricted movement is almost here! It’s normal to have doubts and worries if you’re thinking about having double hip replacement surgery or are getting ready for it. Rest assured, you’re not alone.

From athletes to senior citizens, this common procedure has helped countless individuals regain their quality of life and independence. But what exactly can you expect from this surgery?

In this guide, you’ll discover the preparation process, procedures, and recovery timeline to help you mentally and physically prepare for your journey. Read on.

Why Choose Double Hip Replacement?

The decision to undergo double hip replacement often comes after other treatments fail to provide relief. People choose this route for several reasons:

Simultaneous Relief

When both hips are problematic, replacing them at the same time can provide symmetric relief and function. It will help you avoid prolonged pain and inconvenience.

One Recovery Period

It means going through the rehabilitation process once. This is rather than recovering from a single hip replacement twice.


In the long run, having both surgeries done simultaneously can be more cost-effective than two separate procedures. This is rather than the prolonged buying of Musculoskeletal Medicine.

Increased Mobility and Functionality

Bilateral hip replacement often leads to a more significant improvement in mobility and daily functioning, as patients do not have to compensate for the other still-damaged hip.

Symmetrical Recovery

Patients often find it easier to adjust to their new hips when both are healed concurrently. This leads to a more symmetrical gait and reduced risk of falls.

Better Overall Satisfaction

Studies have shown that patients who undergo double hip replacement report higher satisfaction rates because of the complete relief from hip pain and the ability to return to normal activities.

However, it’s important to consult with MSK Doctors to determine if you are a candidate for bilateral hip replacement surgery. This is because it’s not suitable for everyone.

Before the Surgery

Preparation is key for a successful surgery and recovery. Before your double hip replacement, you’ll undergo several evaluations to ensure you’re healthy enough for the surgery. These include:

  • physical exams
  • X-rays
  • possibly MRIs

Your medical team will discuss anesthesia options, potential risks, and the specifics of the procedure with you.

Pre-Operative Conditioning

Getting in the best possible physical shape can help improve recovery outcomes. This might involve physical therapy exercises to strengthen the muscles around your hips.

Home Preparation

Since mobility will be limited post-surgery, arranging your living space to be more accessible is crucial. Consider installing safety bars in the bathroom, securing rugs to prevent trips, and ensuring necessities are within easy reach.

During the Surgery

Double hip replacement surgery usually takes a few hours to complete. This depends on the surgical approach and specific techniques used. The procedure involves removing the damaged cartilage and bone from your hips and replacing it with artificial components made of:

  • metal
  • plastic
  • ceramic


You’ll be under general anesthesia, meaning you’ll be asleep during the operation, or regional anesthesia. This numbs the lower part of your body.

Surgical Approaches

The anterior (front), posterior (back), or lateral (side) approach may be used. It’s each with its advantages and considerations.

After the Surgery

Immediately following the surgery, you’ll be taken to a recovery area where your health and the functionality of the prosthetic hips will be monitored. Pain management will be a top priority, and you’ll likely start physical therapy very soon after surgery to aid in your recovery.

The First Few Weeks

During the initial weeks, you’ll work closely with physical therapists to gently increase your hip joint’s mobility and strength. It’s normal to experience pain and discomfort, but medication and ice can help manage these symptoms.

Walkers, crutches, or canes will be necessary initially to support your weight as you learn to walk with your new hips. Arranging for assistance at home can make your recovery smoother. Tasks like cooking, cleaning, and personal care might require help.

Long-Term Recovery

The total recovery from double hip replacement surgery can take up to six months or more. However, many patients notice significant improvements much sooner.

Continuation of physical therapy exercises at home or with a professional is vital for regaining strength and flexibility. Adopting a healthy lifestyle will contribute to your overall recovery and the longevity of your hip implants. These include:

  • balanced diet
  • regular exercise

Risks and Considerations

While double hip replacement surgery is generally safe, it carries the usual risks associated with major surgery, including infection, blood clots, and complications from anesthesia. There is also a small risk of dislocation or wear of the prosthetics over time.

Choosing a skilled surgeon and a reputable medical facility can minimize these risks. Furthermore, closely following your surgeon’s and physical therapist’s advice during the recovery process is essential for a successful outcome.

The Impact on Your Life

Patients often experience a dramatic reduction in pain and significant improvement in their ability to perform everyday activities post-recovery. While it’s important to avoid high-impact activities that could damage the new joints, most patients can return to a wide range of physical activities, including:

  • walking
  • cycling
  • swimming

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

When considering double hip replacement surgery, patients often have numerous questions about the process, recovery, and outcomes. Below are some of the most common questions and their answers to provide further clarity.

  • How long will I stay in the hospital after surgery?
  • When can I return to work?
  • Will I need help at home after the surgery?
  • Are there activities I should avoid after my surgery?
  • How long will my new hips last?

Be Prepared for a Double Hip Replacement

In conclusion, double hip replacement surgery is a major procedure that can greatly improve the quality of life for those suffering from hip pain and immobility. While there may be challenges and a period of recovery, the result is often a return to a pain-free and active lifestyle.

If you are considering this surgery, consult with your doctor. Also, be sure to follow all postoperative instructions for the best outcomes. Don’t let hip pain hold you back any longer, take the first step towards a better life and schedule a consultation today!

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