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Had hip replacement, given cortisone for relief. Further?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1997
Answered : 150 Questions
I am in the drug development industry, monitoring drug safety for clinical trials. I have a question regarding hip replacment for my husband. He just received image guided cortisone into his hips for some relief (barely any). What would be the recommended waiting time for undergoing hip replacements since the corticone injections? I believe there is some concern due to the cortisone being an immunosuppressant.
Posted Tue, 8 Oct 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Moustafa Saeed 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
At least 3 months

Detailed Answer:

Thank you for your question.

First I want to clarify that, he really needs hip replacement especially that he had no benefit from the steroid injections.

My other concern is if the hips pain is radiating from his spine for example rather than hip itself. However your doctor will be in better position judge that based on the clinical findings.

Regarding the timing for surgery following steroid injection I will recommend at least 3 months if he is desperate for surgery and that if the injection was given in sterile environment such as operating theater rather than in clinic. 6 months will be better if he can wait.

Recent studies showed no increase in infection risks following steroid injections performed in sterile area such as operating room after 3 - 12 months post injection.

Hope this answers your questions. Please feel free to write back if you need any clarifications.

Best wishes.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Had hip replacement, given cortisone for relief. Further? 50 minutes later
Thank you Dr. Al Saeed! Your response confirms my research and understanding also. It seems the injections help a bit with his walking but he continues to have severe pain upon sitting and has taken to sitting on ice paks! He did have the injections in a sterile environment (hospital) and due to his extreme discomfort I know he will want the replacement(s) as soon as it is possible.
Answered by Dr. Moustafa Saeed 49 minutes later
Brief Answer:
at least 3 months

Detailed Answer:

You might find the surgeon uncomfortable to operate before 6 months because as you know diabetes also increase the risk of infection.

Normal healthy people with no diabetes or recent steroid injection they have about 3% chance of infection.

patients still accept risks of surgery to get pain relief and better quality life.

at the end of the day it is a decision between you and the surgeon to decide when you want to proceed, but as I said earlier recent studies showed no increase in risk of infection after 3 months.

all the best
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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