Hip Fracture Treatment

The treatment of hip fracture is surgical, but if the patient is too sick to tolerate any kind of anesthesia, non surgical treatment is preferred. This includes traction, a tension system that allows hip to heal. Prolonged immobilization due to traction may lead to bed sores, infection, blood clots and muscle wasting.

Depending on the types of fractures, surgical treatment of hip fracture involves three types of surgeries:

  • Internal fixation-- reattaching the bones with special surgical screws
  • Hemiarthroplasty or partial hip replacement—it involves removal of the fractured upper end of the femur and replacing it with artificial metal ball-and-stem, which is inserted into the shaft of the femur.
  • Arthroplasty or total hip replacement—It involves removal of both the bony head and the bony socket and are replaced by an artificial implant.


Internal fixation

Internal fixation is of different types depending on the type of fracture of the thighbone.

Hip pinning surgery— if the fracture that occur through the neck of the femur is not displaced, it requires only two or three metal pins to hold the two pieces of the fracture together. This procedure is called hip pinning surgery.

Compression fixation— if the fracture has caused more than two fragments of the bone, they need to be held together with the help of a metal plate and screws. This procedure is referred as compression fixation.

After Surgery

Immediate post-operative care is directed to stabilize the general condition of the patient. As soon as your vital signs are stable and you are conscious, a physical therapist will direct some movements of the limb. Next day, he will encourage you to get out of bed and try to move. Your doctor will determine the amount of weight to be put on the operated leg. Your exercise plan will continue also after discharge from the hospital.

Recovery Period

Regaining strength and range of motion may require as long as three months period. During this period, follow your doctor’s instructions and continue your exercises to attain a speedy recovery.



The Mayo Clinic http://www.mayoclinic.com
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons http://orthoinfo.aaos.org