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Birmingham Hip Resurfacing

Birmingham Hip Resurfacing

Is hip resurfacing right for me?

Hip resurfacing is a surgical procedure designed to conserve more bone than the traditional total hip replacement (THR). It allows younger, healthy people to return to the activities they once enjoyed prior to experiencing hip problems.

The Birmingham Hip Resurfacing (BHR) System, registered trademark of Smith & Nephew, is the first FDA-approved hip resurfacing system in the U.S., and since its introduction in 1997 the procedure has helped to cure an estimated 60,000 patients worldwide.

“Hip resurfacing allows younger, energetic people to return to any activities they enjoyed prior to their hip problems.”

What is Birmingham Hip Resurfacing?

bhr diagram Birmingham Hip Resurfacing

The Birmingham Hip

The Birmingham Hip is a two-part system that uses durable high-carbide cobalt chrome to resurface the ball and socket joint.

Unlike the THP – which requires the upper portion of the femur bone be cut off in order to accept the stem of the THP device – the BHR resurfaces the femoral ball with a metal cup. The pelvic socket or acetabulum is also resurfaced to create a metal-on-metal joint.

Smoothing the worn areas of the ball-and-socket joint with the high-carbide cobalt chrome eliminates pain and lets the hip move naturally.


The main advantage of hip resurfacing is that the procedure conserves the complete femur bone, preserving the patient’s future option to undergo a THP if needed.

  • Less bone removal
  • Decreased risk of hip dislocation
  • More natural movement
  • Greater range of motion


The potential disadvantages of hip resurfacing include:

  • Femoral neck fractures (rate of 0-4%)
  • Aseptic loosening
  • Metal wear
  • Metal ions in the blood and urine

Best Candidates for Hip Resurfacing

Simply put, hip resurfacing is intended for younger patients who are not overweight. Ideal candidates including those who:

  • Suffer from osteoarthritis
  • Have strong healthy bones
  • Are Under 60
  • Do not have an infection
  • Are not allergic to the metals used

The surgery is typically more suited to male patients, however females who best match the ideal requirements may be considered.

While hip resurfacing is a great alternative to THP surgery, it’s simply not suitable for everyone. Those who may not be suitable for hip resurfacing include patients who suffer from:

  • Severe bone loss in their femoral head
  • Large femoral neck cysts
  • Femoral head cysts larger than 1cm
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Osteonecrosis (poor blood supply to the femoral head)
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Impaired kidney function

People who are tall, thin or small boned will also be advised not to undergo the procedure.

To ensure the long-term success of your treatment it’s essential to chose an experienced surgeon and take their advice.


In most cases patients return home after 1-4 days. You may begin putting weight on the leg immediately however your doctor may advise using a cane or crutches for the first few days or weeks.

A physiotherapist will give you exercises to help increase your range of motion, and you’ll be required to visit the orthopedic surgeon for regular check-ups.

Most patients resume regular activities after around 6 weeks.

hip resurfacing x ray  550x449 Birmingham Hip Resurfacing

X-Ray of Brimingham Hip Resurfacing Surgey


A typical hip resurfacing will last a long time. Studies have shown a 98.4% revision-free survival of the surgery at the five year mark, and a 95% revision-free survival at 10 years – comparable to that of a traditional total hip replacement in the under-60 age group.

Since hip resurfacing was introduced in 1997, many athletes have opted for the procedure and gone on to compete at an international level. They include Ron Noreman 2010 winner of NPC Empire States Bodybuilding Championships and 2006 Tour de France winner Ian MacLaren.

If you are considering Birmingham hip Resurfacing or any orthopedic surgery, visit Thailand Orthopedic to discover an affordable alternative that does not require you to have insurance while also enjoying the benefits of traveling overseas to Thailand. Visit top orthopedic centers at Bangkok hospitals and have consultations with top board certified orthopedic surgeons.


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