A traditional hip replacement procedure takes one to two hours, according to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Full recovery from the surgery may take three to six months. A minimally invasive procedure typically involves a shorter recovery time and smaller surgical incisions.
Rehabilitation and full recovery depends on a patient's overall health and the type of surgery performed, notes the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Patients usually spend three to five days in the hospital, during which time a physical therapist assists with exercises and instructions. Care must be exercised when bending or sitting because the new joint is smaller and has a more limited range of motion. Dislocation and inflammatory reactions are the two most common complications that arise after hip surgery.
During a standard hip replacement, a single incision, roughly 8 to 10 inches long, is made on the side of the hip to expose the bones of the hip joint, explains WebMD. The ball portion of the joint is removed, and an artificial component is attached to the thighbone. The artificial joint is then attached to the hipbone, and the doctor replaces the muscles and closes the incision. A minimally invasive surgery follows the same general process but uses one or two smaller incisions rather than a single, long cut.