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What is involved in ceramic hip resurfacing?

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Quick Answer

Ceramic hip resurfacing involves trimming and capping the head of the thighbone with a smooth ceramic covering, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. A surgeon removes the damaged bone and cartilage and replaces it with ceramic components.

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Full Answer

Ceramic hip resurfacing is a surgical procedure that resembles traditional total hip replacement, states the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. In both procedures, a surgeon removes the damaged socket and replaces it with a ceramic, metal or plastic shell. However, unlike total hip replacement, ceramic hip resurfacing does not involve the removal of the femoral head. Instead, a surgeon caps and trims the femoral head to mirror the size of the natural hip ball. Although the implants used in ceramic hip resurfacing are mechanical, patients maintain their natural walking patterns after surgery.

During surgery, a surgeon makes an incision on the patient's thigh to access the hip joint and removes the femoral head from the socket, explains the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. The surgeon trims the femoral head and cements a metal or ceramic cap over it. Next, the surgeon removes the cartilage that lines the socket and pushes a metal cup into the socket. The surgeon relocates the femoral head into the socket and closes the incision. The ceramic prosthesis restores the function of the joint.

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