Hip Replacement and Resurfacing

Hip Resurfacing

If you have arthritic, damaged hip bones, but have good general bone strength, the hip can be reshaped and resurfaced without being replaced. Hip resurfacing is an excellent option for young, active people with hip degeneration. Read more about hip resurfacing.

At UC San Diego Health, our joint replacement surgeons have extensive experience and expertise in total hip replacement. In addition, our fellowship-trained team is frequently called on to perform revision surgery following replacement at other medical centers.

Types of Hip Replacement

  • Mini-anterior approach: the incision is made in the front of the hip, enabling the surgeon to reach the joint by separating the muscles rather than cutting them. We perform more anterior hip replacements than any medical center in the region. Mini-anterior hip replacement is performed by Krishna Cidambi, MD, and  Francis Gonzales, MD.
  • Mini-posterior approach: the surgical incision is made at the back of the hip and allows for direct, minimally invasive access to the hip joint and thigh bone (femur). Mini-posterior hip replacement is performed by Scott Ball, MD.
  • Anterolateral approach: the surgical incision is made on the side of the hip. This approach is highly popular in Canada and Europe, and has the added benefit of being easily revised without additional risk of dislocation. Anterolateral hip replacement is performed by Anna Kulidjian, MD.

We use the approach that will give the best result for each patient. Each of these approaches offered at UC San Diego Health provides benefits over traditional hip replacement techniques, including:

  • Faster recovery with less pain
  • Greater stability (full movement and flexibility after surgery)
  • Reduced risk of dislocation
Our team works closely with patients before surgery to ensure they reach their recovery goals. We offer online or in-person classes prior to surgery that cover topics that can help you and your loved ones prepare. 

Pain Management and Rehabilitation

We understand the importance of pain management and post-surgical rehab in your recovery. Our pain specialists are highly involved in your surgery plans, and we practice multimodal pain management to ensure your comfort. We begin rehab shortly after surgery and integrate home-based physical therapy with highly trained therapists into your replacement plan. Read about our orthopedic rehab program.

Outpatient Procedures Available

Hip Replacement Patient Leaves Hours After Surgery

Drew Renick had surgery to replace his hip at 8 a.m. and was able to return home later that afternoon. Read his story.

​Less invasive surgical techniques, better anesthesia, and better physical therapy have made it possible for motivated, active patients to undergo hip replacement on an outpatient basis. Patients can start rehabilitation therapy a few hours after surgery, and return home within 24 hours after surgery.

How well you were moving around before surgery — not age — is the best predictor for how quickly you will recover from surgery. The healthier and more active you are, the more you can expect to be up and walking around after hip replacement.  

If you'd like to know whether you're a candidate, call 858-657-8200 and mention your interest in outpatient surgery when you schedule an appointment.

More About Our Patients and Doctors

Roch Frey, UC San Diego Center for Joint Care total hip replacement and hip resurfacing patient

"Anyone living with hip pain knows how extreme and constant the pain is 24/7. That is now a faint memory of mine." - Roch Frey, hip resurfacing and total hip replacement patient.

Patient Stories

"I have been racing triathlons for 25 years and in 2008 I started to have a lot of left hip pain. After seeing many doctors I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis." Read about Roch Frey's experience with hip surfacing and replacement.

Joint Replacement Surgeons Make Humanitarian Journey

A San Diego surgical team, led by Anna Kulidjian, MD, performed 24 hip replacements for people without access in mountainous region of Armenia and trained local surgeons. Read about their trip.

Appointments and Referrals

Office Locations

La Jolla



Hip Replacement Surgeons