High-impact sports are generally discouraged after surgery including surfing, Rugby, martial arts, and football due to significant risk of falling. In contrast, Golf, cycling, hiking, and swimming (avoid breaststroke) are all recommended as low-impact activities. There is lack of evidence available about surfing following hip resurfacing arthroplasty (HRA) or total hip arthroplasty (THA).
Vanlommel et al. thus undertook a study in a single surgeon series to evaluate the quality and viability of resuming this intense sport after HRA, with the hypothesis that return to surfing is viable after HRA. They examined 45 patients who had practised surfing prior to the beginning of pain and hip surgery. For 37 (82%) patients, complete clinical and radiological follow-up was done including several questionnaires. The results were amazing. More than 80% of patients commenced surfing within the first 6 months after surgery. During surfing, 21 patients (72%) were completely pain free. More than 80% of patients began surfing within 6 months of their surgery. 21 patients (72%) were fully pain-free when surfing.
Wait don’t go for surfing right now if you have just undergone HRA or THA surgery. This study is a short term evaluation. A prospective study based on preclinical laboratory simulation and high quality clinical study such as the High-Activity Arthroplasty Score remains necessary to let you go enjoy surfing.
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