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ORIF of Hip Fracture


What do I need to know about open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) of a hip fracture?

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.

What will happen during surgery?

  • You may be given medicine to keep you asleep and free from pain during surgery. You may instead be given the medicine into your spine to numb the surgery area. You may also receive a medicine to prevent infection. 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.
    Internal Fixation Device
  • 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.

What will happen after surgery?

You will stay in the hospital for several days. You will need to wear pressure stockings to help prevent blood clots. It will be important for you to get up and move after your surgery. Movement also helps prevent blood clots and pneumonia. A physical therapist will come and help you move the day after surgery. He will teach you how to use a walker or crutches. He will also give you exercises to do when you go home. After you go home, you will need to continue physical therapy.

What are the risks of surgery?

You may bleed more than expected or develop an infection. You may develop blood clots that can become life-threatening. You may have difficulty walking without assistance of a walker or cane even after surgery.

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Further information

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