Background: Hip replacement (arthroplasty) surgery is a highly successful treatment for patients with severe symptomatic arthritis of the hip joint. For older patients, several designs of Total Hip Arthroplasty have shown excellent results in terms of both function and value for money. However, in younger more active patients, there is approximately a 50% failure rate at 25 years for traditional implants. Hip resurfacing is a relatively new arthroplasty technique. In a recent review of the literature on resurfacing arthroplasty it was concluded that the short-term functional results appear promising but some potential early disadvantages were identified, including the risk of femoral neck fracture and collapse of the head of the femur. The aim of the current study is to assess whether there is a difference in functional hip scores at one year post-operation between Total Hip Arthroplasty and Resurfacing Arthroplasty. Secondary aims include assessment of complication rates for both procedures as well cost effectiveness. \ud Methods/design: All patients medically fit for surgery and deemed suitable for a resurfacing arthroplasty are eligible to take part in this study. A randomisation sequence will be produced and administered independently. After consenting, all patients will be clinically reviewed and hip function, quality of life and physical activity level will be assessed through questionnaires. The allocated surgery will then be performed with the preferred technique of the surgeon. Six weeks post-operation hip function will be assessed and complications recorded. Three, six and 12 months post-operation hip function, quality of life and physical activity level will be assessed. Additional information about patients' out-of-pocket expenses will also be collected
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