News Article: Excellent outcome for Bailey …

Femoral head and neck excision (FHNE) involves removing the ball of the hip ball-and socket joint, usually with an oscillating saw. As healing progresses, a fibrous tissue articulation develops to replace the joint. Diligent physiotherapy and/or hydrotherapy is needed in the following two months to keep this pseudoarthrosis (“false joint”) articulation flexible to achieve a decent range of long-term extension. One major benefit of FHNE over almost every other orthopaedic procedure is that there is no need to restrict activity in the post-op period. Activity, including stair climbing etc, is very much encouraged. See our post-op aftercare sheet for FHNE for more detail.

This surgery is vastly cheaper, less technically demanding and less complication-prone than total hip replacement. Indeed, when THRs do get serious complications, they often get revised to FHNEs. The function that is achieved with FHNE is usually more than adequate in cats and small dogs. FHNE is generally less adequately functional the larger the patient gets. That having been said, good outcomes can still be achieved in larger dogs.


Bailey was a young Golden Retriever who had bilateral FHNEs done at the same time for hip dysplasia. This was a big “ask” for the owners in terms of aftercare in the weeks following surgery. The owners obviously worked very hard at the post-op rehabilitation, with hydrotherapy and the passive extension exercises we asked them to do.
Just look at the result they got for their efforts!