Hip Replacement and Recovery | Celebrity Patients


Celebrity Hip Replacements
Who Else Has Had a Hip Replacement?

Who figures amongst the most famous of the celebrity hip replacements?

Strangely its a bit hard to tell because the normally publicity hungry "A" list folk seem a bit shy about admitting they've had one.

Good grief I'm happy to talk about mine at anytime!

Wayne Sleep - Dancer

Wayne Sleep

Wayne is best known for his work as a Principle Dancer with the Royal Ballet but he is also an actor (Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream), choreographer (David and Goliath) and director (Carnival for the Birds) as examples.

In January 2010, at the age of 62, Wayne underwent hip replacement surgery.

Three months later he was dancing the role of one of the Ugly Sisters with the Royal Ballet. Part of his routine consisted of 50 continuous jumps - in high heels.


Evel Knievel - Motorbike Stuntman

Evel Knievel

Amongst Evel Knievel's claims to fame is the Guinness world record for the most broken bones - 35. He's had 14 open-reduction surgeries (to repair or replace bones, some with steel screws, pins or rods) and has spent over 36 months in hospital. Not really surprising for a man who tried to jump the fountains at Caesar's Palace and enjoyed nothing better then the chance to jump a canyon on his rocket powered bike. But the hip replacement? That came after he took a fall playing golf!!!

Perhaps not so surprising when you consider how much of a hammering his body had taken over the years.


Jack Nicklaus - Golfer

Considered to be the greatest golfer of the 20th century Jack (Golden Bear) Nicklaus has over 100 worldwide golfing victories to his name. But it hasn't been an easy run.

In 1963 Jack injured his hip playing golf and had to endure 25 cortisone injections in a 10 week period. At that time his doctor warned him that there might well be repercussions. There were - osteoarthritis. By the time he agreed to surgery his Jack had been suffering bone-on-bone wear for about 7 years - ow!

Jack opted for a ceramic-on-ceramic implant in 1999 as he wanted a prosthesis that would suit his active life style. After his recovery from surgery he became an public advocate for hip replacement surgery.


Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother - Royalty

Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother

Having a hip replacement at 97 years of age must make Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother one of the oldest hip replacement patients ever.

The Queen Mum (as she was affectionately known) had already had one hip replaced at the age of 95 (metal-on-poly) and recovered well from the procedure only to fall and break her other hip two years later.

On each occasion the Queen Mother made an amazingly quick recovery. She was a woman with a huge amount of spirit.


Mick Mars - Guitarist

Rock guitarist Mick Mars who played with Mötley Crüe until it split in 2001 needed a hip replacement three years later to deal with ankylosing spondylitis. The illness (which he'd first had diagnosed at age 19) had caused his lower spine to seize up - "Causing scoliosis in my back and squashing me further down and forward until I was a full three inches shorter than I was in high school." When he could no longer deal with the pain and the restricted mobility he went for surgery.

Did he make a comeback? For sure. The band reunited in 2004 and have been making music ever since.


Rudy Galindo - Ice Skater

Rudy Galindo

In 2002 Rudy received the devastating news that he had avascular necrosis in both hips. Despite his deteriorating condition he continued to skate. But by the summer of 2003 reality hit hard when he learned that the head of his left femur had fractured and was only being held in place by his hip socket!

Recognising it was now time for surgery, Rudy opted for ceramic-on-ceramic hip implants. The operations were performed in Sept (left hip) and Oct (right hip) and Rudy focused himself on his recovery. By April 2004 he was ready for the Champions on Ice Tours and was able to include all four of the triple jumps he is so famous for.


Elizabeth Taylor - Actress and Fund-Raiser

Having undergone two hip replacements Elizabeth Taylor could be forgiven for thinking she'd had her share. But the fates have never been kind to this woman and it was soon obvious that the procedure had left one leg shorter than the other and a third operation would be needed.

"When deciding whether or not to undergo surgery, I didn't anticipate the lengthy time I would need to fully recuperate...but I don't regret choosing to have this surgery because, in the long run, it will improve my quality of life--and already has." She said.

Elizabeth underwent 100 surgical procedures in her life.


Eddie Van Halen - Guitarist

Eddie van Halen

Often cited as being "second only to Hendrix" Eddie Van Halen is one of the most widely acclaimed rock guitarists in the business - ever!

In 1999 at just 43 years of age and in chronic, debilitating pain Eddie had no option but to have a hip replaced. Received wisdom gives the cause as too much wear and tear on his body brought about my his demanding stage act. How much his well publicised alcohol problem contributed to that is not mentioned.

Although he recovered well from the hip surgery and was soon back on tour he was later diagnosed with oral cancer. Did that stop him - not at all. The last I heard the band is preparing for its 2010 tour.


With the introductions of longer lasting hip implants we can expect there to be more celebrity hip replacements. Hopefully there will also be more openness now that the procedure is less associated with old age.


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