OSU Docs Offering Alternative To Hip Replacement Surgery

Dec 20, 2017


Health officials say more than 300,000 Americans receive a hip replacement each year.

The surgery requires months of physical rehabilitation with no guarantee how long the implant will last. Doctors at Ohio State University's Medical Center are giving patients an option to avoid replacement surgery. Mike Foley explains.

With the Subchondroplasty procedure, doctors inject a bone substitute material into the joint to fill any voids or lesions. Over time, the patient’s body replaces the material with healthy bone. Ohio State Wexner Medical Center orthopedic surgeon Dr. Kelton Vasileff says when used in conjunction with other treatments, Subchondroplasty helps patients preserve their hip joint.

“We do different things like platelet-rich plasma and bone marrow aspirate stem cell injections and mix that with the Subchondroplasty material to try to help patients regenerate bone and strengthen their bone. For younger patients, it’s allowed us to expand our indications for hip preservation surgery and allowed them to prevent or delay the need to have hip replacement surgery. Once you have replacement surgery, you can’t really go back. There is potentially a finite lifespan to some of these implants.”   

Vasileff says Subchondroplasty is much less invasive than a total hip replacement, allowing patients to comfortably get back on their feet in a matter of weeks rather than months. The bone-hardening procedure has traditionally been used in knee surgeries. Doctors also say Subchondroplasty can help women who suffer from temporary osteoporosis during pregnancy or after delivery.