While most artificial hip joints in use today will last 10-20 years, like all devices, the artificial hip joint – which replaces the natural hip bone with a metal ball and resurfaces the hip socket with a metal shell and plastic liner – wears out over time. For younger patients, this means a second surgery (and maybe even a third) will be required to replace the artificial joint. Fortunately, a rare procedure now being offered by specialists at Penn Medicine provides a long-term alternative for younger patients with chronic hip pain.
New research indicates that in recent years orthopaedic surgeons have seen a dramatic surge in the number of Baby Boomers suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, or injury to the joint – often resulting from increased activities such as marathon running, swimming, or even power walking. According to the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, knee replacements nearly tripled in people ages 45 to 64 between 1997 and 2009. Though still less common in younger patients, current estimates suggest that more than half a million Americans in their 50s have had the procedure. Based on current trends, operations in that age group are expected to increase.
Platelet-rich plasma therapy (PRPT) has received a lot of attention as a popular treatment for celebrity athletes, but its value in treating the injuries in many of the most famous cases is unproven. Samir Mehta, MD provides insight into the types of cases where PRPT is approved and demonstrated effective.