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Orif Of A Hip Fracture

What you should know

Open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) is surgery to fix a broken bone in your hip. A hip fracture is a break in the top of the femur or in the hip socket. The femur is the long bone in your thigh that attaches to your pelvis at the hip joint. The broken parts of your femur will be put back together with metal hardware. You may also need an implant to replace your hip socket.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.


  • You may get an infection or bleed more than expected after surgery. Blood vessels, nerves, or muscles may be damaged. Your hip may not heal or work as well as it did before your injury. You may still have pain, a limp when you walk, or need to use a cane or walker.
  • You are at risk for a fat emboli. This is when fat is forced out of the inside of the bone and travels to other parts of your body. It can block blood flow to your lungs, brain, or heart. You may get a blood clot in your arm or leg. This may become life-threatening.

Getting Ready

The week before your surgery:

  • Ask your caregiver if you need to stop using aspirin or any other prescribed or over-the-counter medicine before your procedure or surgery.
  • Bring your medicine bottles or a list of your medicines when you see your caregiver. Tell your caregiver if you are allergic to any medicine. Tell your caregiver if you use any herbs, food supplements, or over-the-counter medicine.
  • You may need to take blood thinner medicine to prevent blood clots.
  • You may need an MRI or x-rays of your hips and legs. Write down the date, time, and location of each test.
  • Ask a family member or friend to drive you home after surgery. Do not drive yourself home.

The night before your surgery:

  • You may be given medicine to help you sleep.
  • Ask caregivers about directions for eating and drinking.

The day of your surgery:

  • Caregivers may insert an intravenous tube (IV) into your vein. A vein in the arm is usually chosen. Through the IV tube, you may be given liquids and medicine.
  • An anesthesiologist will talk to you before your surgery. You may need medicine to keep you asleep or numb an area of your body during surgery. Tell caregivers if you or anyone in your family has had a problem with anesthesia in the past.
  • You or a close family member will be asked to sign a legal document called a consent form. It gives caregivers permission to do the procedure or surgery. It also explains the problems that may happen, and your choices. Make sure all your questions are answered before you sign this form.


What will happen:

  • Your healthcare provider will make an incision on your hip to see the damaged femur. He will straighten your femur and put the broken pieces of bone together. He may use metal screws, bars, plates, or rods to hold the broken bones tightly together.
  • Healthcare providers will use an artificial implant to replace the head of your femur, if needed. It will be tightly fitted to the top of your femur. It may be secured using screws or cement. If your hip socket is badly damaged, it may also be replaced with an implant. X-rays may be taken during surgery to help healthcare providers put your hip joint back together. X-rays can also show if the devices and implants are in the right places. A drain may be placed to carry blood and other fluids away from your hip joint. Your incision will be closed with stitches or staples and covered with a bandage.

After your surgery:

You will be taken to a recovery room where you can rest until you are fully awake. Healthcare providers will monitor you closely. When they see that you are okay, you will be taken back to your hospital room. The bandages covering your incision will help prevent infection. A healthcare provider will remove the bandage soon after your surgery to check the area. Do not try to get out of bed until your healthcare provider says it is okay.

Contact a caregiver if

  • You get a cold, the flu, or a fever.
  • You have infected skin or a wound near your hip.
  • You have questions or concerns about your surgery.

Seek Care Immediately if

  • You have severe pain, or you have trouble walking or moving your hips.
  • You suddenly have pain in your chest and trouble breathing.
  • You feel confused and have trouble thinking and remembering things.
  • You feel faint and weak, or you lose consciousness.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.