How are hip complications of sickle cell disease (SCD) (avascular necrosis) treated?

Updated: May 12, 2021
  • Author: Joseph E Maakaron, MD; Chief Editor: Emmanuel C Besa, MD  more...
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Answer

Avascular necrosis of the femoral and humeral heads is treated by not bearing weight at the site. The patient may need to make career and lifestyle adjustments. Occupational retraining and physical therapy may be needed. In many cases, surgical intervention with hip replacement or other orthopedic procedures are needed. Avascular osteonecrosis may result from chronic hypoxia in weight-bearing joints, commonly the femoral head. Joint replacement is often necessary.


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