Hip Replacement History

The earliest recorded case of attempts to perform hip replacement procedures date back to as early as 1891 when Themistocles Gluck tried to use ivory implants to replace the femoral head.

In 1940, an American surgeon, Dr Austin Moore (1899–1963), performed the first metallic hip replacement at Columbia Hospital in South Carolina. Moore had designed a proximal femoral prosthesis with a large head made of Vitallium. The implant was around 12 inches in length and would be attached with bolts to the end of the femoral shaft, offering an early form of hemiarthroplasty or partial hip replacement.

Dr. Moore’s prosthetic implant gained popularity and the surgeon eventually developed an improved version referred to as the Austin Moore prosthesis, which is still in use today. However, today, the implant is inserted within the medullary canal of the femur, where bone growth eventually leads to its more permanent attachment.

It 1960, a Burmese surgeon, Dr San Baw, used ivory hip prostheses to correct a femoral neck fracture in an 83 year old Buddhist nun called Daw Punya. Between 1960 and 1980, Baw went on to perform more than 300 ivory hip replacements and he presented the paper “Ivory hip replacement for ununited fractures of the neck of the femur” at the British Orthopaedic Association conference in 1969.

Baw was finding that almost 90% of his patients were able to walk, squat, or play football within a few weeks of undergoing the ivory hip replacements. Ivory was probably used not only because it was cheap at the time but because it was thought to possess good biomechanical properties.  

Further Reading

Last Updated: Jun 10, 2023

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Written by

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Dr. Ananya Mandal is a doctor by profession, lecturer by vocation and a medical writer by passion. She specialized in Clinical Pharmacology after her bachelor's (MBBS). For her, health communication is not just writing complicated reviews for professionals but making medical knowledge understandable and available to the general public as well.


Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:

  • APA

    Mandal, Ananya. (2023, June 10). Hip Replacement History. News-Medical. Retrieved on July 20, 2024 from https://www.news-medical.net/health/Hip-Replacement-History.aspx.

  • MLA

    Mandal, Ananya. "Hip Replacement History". News-Medical. 20 July 2024. <https://www.news-medical.net/health/Hip-Replacement-History.aspx>.

  • Chicago

    Mandal, Ananya. "Hip Replacement History". News-Medical. https://www.news-medical.net/health/Hip-Replacement-History.aspx. (accessed July 20, 2024).

  • Harvard

    Mandal, Ananya. 2023. Hip Replacement History. News-Medical, viewed 20 July 2024, https://www.news-medical.net/health/Hip-Replacement-History.aspx.


  1. John Spiel man John Spiel man Canada says:

    Is Austin Moore prothesis still used in US for limited mobility nursing home patients?

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
Post a new comment

While we only use edited and approved content for Azthena answers, it may on occasions provide incorrect responses. Please confirm any data provided with the related suppliers or authors. We do not provide medical advice, if you search for medical information you must always consult a medical professional before acting on any information provided.

Your questions, but not your email details will be shared with OpenAI and retained for 30 days in accordance with their privacy principles.

Please do not ask questions that use sensitive or confidential information.

Read the full Terms & Conditions.