Informed Patient Tutorial
Copyright 2012 by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

Informed Patient - Total Hip Replacement


Welcome to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons' Informed Patient Program. These online learning modules have been developed by orthopaedic surgeons to help you better understand your condition and the treatments your doctor recommends.

The buttons at the bottom of this screen will help you navigate through the learning module. You may choose to turn the audio off or back on at any time during the module.

We also offer a printer-friendly version of this module. Simply click the "Print" button in the bottom left corner to create a paper copy.

Click the "Next" button to begin your learning module.

Total hip replacement is the most common surgical procedure used to treat a painful hip. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), approximately 238,000 total hip replacements were performed in the United States in 2004.

This tutorial will explain why your hip may hurt and what treatment may be used to relieve the pain. It will show you some of the causes of a painful hip. It will tell you some of the ways to treat your hip without surgery. It will then explain why you may need a total hip replacement and what you can expect from surgery.

There are ten parts to the tutorial. As you work through them, you will be asked whether you understand the information, and you will be reminded to write down any questions you still have in order to remember to ask about them when you next talk with your orthopaedic surgeon.

The tutorial includes the following sections:
  1. Your Hip: The anatomy of the hip is explained.
  2. Causes: Many conditions cause a painful hip. This section describes some of the conditions that may lead to hip pain.
  3. Symptoms: This section explains some of the signs to look for in a painful, osteoarthritic hip.
  4. Diagnosis: This section explains some of the ways hip arthritis is diagnosed.
  5. Nonsurgical Treatment: There are many nonsurgical options physicians have to treat osteoarthritis. Some of these are explained in this section.
  6. Surgical Treatment: This section describes some of the aspects of surgical treatment.
  7. Your Surgery: This section reviews what you may expect during surgery.
  8. After Surgery: This section explains what you may expect after surgery.
  9. Risks and Complications: Some risks and complications can be expected with any surgery. This section outlines a few.
  10. Conclusion: This section sums up the information and provides you with an opportunity to add more questions for your doctor.