Joint Commission Gold Seal

Certified by The Joint Commission for Advanced Total Hip and Knee Replacement at Froedtert Menomonee Falls Hospital. We are one of only two hospitals in the state to achieve this certification.

The hip joint is one of the largest weight-bearing joints in the body. Total hip replacement, or hip arthroplasty, can relieve pain and restore function. However, other treatment options may relieve hip pain without surgery. Our multidisciplinary orthopaedic team can make an accurate diagnosis and treat the entire spectrum of hip disorders, in some cases without the need for a total hip replacement.

When hip replacement is necessary, we have the specialized knowledge and expertise to treat even the most medically complex cases. We perform a high volume of hip replacement surgeries, have an excellent patient satisfaction rate and a low complication rate. Our entire team is focused on and skilled in joint replacement surgery, which means a better overall experience for our patients.

Conditions That Can Lead to Total Hip Replacement

We treat the entire spectrum of hip disorders, which may or may not lead to total hip replacement surgery, including:

  • Arthritis (osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, post-traumatic arthritis) — Arthritis is a degenerative condition, meaning it gets worse over time. There are many non-surgical treatments for arthritis, but for some patients, total hip replacement may be recommended.
  • Avascular Necrosis (bone death) — Avascular necrosis results from the loss of blood supply to the bone, whether temporary or permanent. It can be caused by several things, including trauma and some cancer treatments. If it affects the hip joint, a total hip replacement may be recommended.
  • Hip Dysplasia — Hip dysplasia is a condition where the hip socket does not completely cover or support the ball portion, or femoral head, of the hip joint. It is generally present at birth, but some people may not have symptoms or be diagnosed until adulthood. Hip dysplasia can damage the hip joint to the point where total hip replacement surgery is necessary.
  • Labral Tears (hip) — Labral tears happen in the labrum, a ring of cartilage in the hip. An injury to the labrum may be treated with physical therapy or medications. However some labral tears may require surgical repair depending on the type and severity of the tear. A labral tear in the hip may be repaired with arthroscopic surgery.

Other Common Conditions That Can Affect the Hip Joint

  • Bursitis
  • Fractures
  • Industrial conditions (work-related injuries)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Sciatica
  • Tendinitis
  • Trauma

When Is It Time for Hip Replacement Surgery?

Osteoarthritis is a leading cause of hip replacement, but the hip can be damaged by different types of arthritis, injury, infections or hip deformities. Cartilage serves as a joint’s protective cushion. If the cartilage is damaged or worn thin, the bones can rub against each other, causing pain. When other treatment options have failed, and pain has made everyday activities difficult — like walking, sitting or resting — total hip replacement may be an option.

How Is Total Hip Replacement Performed?

During a total hip replacement, the ball and socket portion of the joint are replaced with an artificial joint (prosthesis). The implant is made of materials that allow for smooth, natural movement after the joint is healed. There are two general types of hip implants — cemented and uncemented. 

The first uses surgical cement and the second uses parts with porous surfaces to allow the bone to grow into the pores and hold the implant in place. A hybrid implant may also be used. The type of implant used may depend on the patient’s age, weight, medical conditions and other factors. An artificial hip joint can last ten to 20 years.

For some patients, a minimally invasive approach may be used, which requires a smaller incision and generally leads to faster recovery, less pain and fewer complications. As part of an academic medical center, we also have access to an implant bank, with a wide selection of implants on hand to quickly deal with every contingency.

Same-Day Discharge (Outpatient Hip Replacement Surgery)

More than half of our hip replacements are on an outpatient basis — meaning that you will go home the day of your surgery. Your surgeon will determine if this is an option for you based on your medical history and any other medical conditions you may have.

What to Expect During the Procedure

At home before your surgery, you will receive instructions on how to prepare for your surgery. This will include when to stop eating and drinking and when to arrive. Read the instructions carefully and contact your care team with any questions. If you take regular medication, ask your care team if you should take the medication or wait until after surgery. A responsible adult over the age of 18 will need to drive you home after surgery.

On the day of your surgery, you will arrive and check in. We will take you to a prep/recovery room to settle in. We will check your blood pressure, heart rate and other vitals. Your surgeon and the anesthesiologist will talk to you about the procedure and the anesthetic. We will start you on an IV. From there we will take you to the operating room. 

After the surgery, we will take you back to the same room to monitor your recovery for approximately 4 – 6 hours. Our nursing team will monitor your vital signs, pain, nausea and hydration/drinking along with the progress of feeling coming back to your legs after the anesthetic. All of these things help determine your readiness to sit in a chair, walk and work with the physical therapist.

Once you are able, we will help you change into your own clothes and sit in a soft recliner chair. The nurse will discuss pain control prior to your physical therapy session to optimize your therapy experience. Here are the discharge criteria to meet prior to going home.

  • Tolerate food and drink with minimal nausea
  • Tolerable pain control level
  • Be able to urinate
  • Meet physical therapy goals during your therapy session

Once you have met these criteria, a nurse will review your discharge instructions with you and your responsible adult prior to discharge. Please feel free to ask any questions you have. The day after surgery, a staff member will call you to see how you are doing.

Inpatient Hip Replacement Surgery

Underlying medical conditions — such as a heart condition, history of stroke or another disease — can require that you stay in the hospital overnight or for a few days after surgery so that we can monitor your recovery. The surgeon or anesthesiologist could make the decision during surgery to keep you overnight or longer based on an observation during the procedure. The criteria for discharge are the same, but will take place over a longer period of time.

Helping You Get Back in Action After Hip Surgery

Rehabilitation and therapy after hip replacement surgery can help restore a patient’s strength, function, stability, balance, range of motion and mobility. Recovery takes about three months, but may take longer depending on the patient’s surgery, overall health and other factors. Active participation in physical and occupational therapy is critical to returning to normal activities and independence.

Total Joint Replacement Class, which helps prepare patients for the many aspects of total hip joint replacement surgery, is held regularly. Patients are encouraged to bring a relative or friend to the class.

Virtual Visits Are Available

Safe and convenient virtual visits by video let you get the care you need via a mobile device, tablet or computer wherever you are. We'll assess your condition and develop a treatment plan right away. To schedule a virtual visit, call 414-777-7700.

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Recognized as High Performing by U.S. News & World Report

Froedtert Menomonee Falls Hospital is recognized by U.S. News & World Report as high performing in six procedures and conditions, including hip replacement and knee replacement.