Hip Replacement Now for Younger Set
The Washington Post reports on a downward trend in the age of people opting for hip replacement. Once upon a time, the Post reports, doctors advised patients to wait until they were 60 before getting a new hip, and even today, most hip recipients are over 65, but the portion of patients ages 45 to 64 grew from 27 percent in 1998 to 40 percent in 2008. In that year, by the way, more than 277,000 total hip replacements were performed. Why the youth movement? The Post suggests that younger people are less willing to give up active lives and more willing to accept the extreme likelihood that a second hip replacement will be necessary 15 or 20 years down the road. James Graeter, director of the George Washington University Hospital Joint Replacement Center, tells the Post that he advises patients that they should go with their hip as long as they can until it gets to the point where it hurts all the time or it wakes you up at night, and not for a hip that hurts after you walk a half-mile, but hurts with every step.