Getting Hip to Hip Surgery

Questions Continue Surrounding Hip Replacement and Hip Resurfacing Procedures

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - March 6, 2008) - Both total hip replacement or total hip arthroplasty (THA) and hip resurfacing procedures continue to spark a lively ongoing discussion amongst orthopaedic surgeons. Some are calling hip resurfacing a more effective alternative, while others are saying complications associated with resurfacing far outweigh its effectiveness.

Total hip replacement involves an orthopaedic surgeon removing the head (or ball) and neck of the femur (thigh bone) and replacing them with a metal implant. The resurfacing procedure reshapes the head of the thigh bone and covers it, sparing part of the bone with a metal and plastic implant.

"Hip resurfacing is not new to orthopaedics; it has been around for more than 10 years now," said William Maloney, MD, professor of surgery and chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Stanford University. "We are now starting to acquire experience and measurable data associated with the procedure and its outcomes. One reason for this discussion is because orthopaedic surgeons are dealing with more direct to consumer advertising today when it comes to resurfacing. Patients are coming into our offices and asking for the procedure without really understanding what is involved or even if they are a suitable candidate."

Those who perform hip resurfacing procedures say:

--  It is a less invasive surgery with a shorter hospital stay and
    recovery time
--  Patients experience a better range of motion after surgery
--  Patients experience a longer implant life

Those who perform total hip replacement say:

--  It is no more invasive than resurfacing
--  Healing time is much the same as for resurfacing patients
--  More of the patient population stands to benefit from total hip

Dr. Maloney will moderate a frank and fact filled discussion on the merits of both procedures at a media briefing entitled: "Getting Hip to Hip Surgery: Resurfacing and Replacement," on Thursday, March 6, 2008, at the 75th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), in the Moscone Convention Center, South Mezzanine, at 9:15 a.m., in Room 224.

The panel of presenters will include: Paul Beaule, MD, Robert Trousdale, MD, Paul Lachiewicz, MD, and Tom Schmalzried, MD. These orthopaedic surgeons will discuss the newest technology in total hip arthroplasty, pitfalls and misconceptions when it comes to resurfacing and the changing hip replacement patient.

"We will also discuss if new technologies are really worth pursuing in the long run," said Maloney. "Total hip and knee replacements together are Medicare's biggest expense, at the end of the day we are all paying for these procedures. Our biggest priorities are to continue offering the best benefits and outcomes to all our patients, no matter what procedure they undergo."

Editor's Note: Full disclosure information for each AAOS media-briefing participant is available upon request. Please contact Catherine Dolf, (Cell) (847) 894-9112 or Lauren Pearson, (Cell) (224) 374-8610 for more information.

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American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons

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Contact Information: For more information, contact: Catherine Dolf C: (847) 894-9112 O: (847) 384-4034 Lauren Pearson C: (224) 374-8610 O: (847) 384-4031