A closer look at Madonna’s hip surgery

Madonna has recently posted a number of photos on Instagram of a large scar as she recovers from recent hip surgery. In 2020 she had to cancel numerous dates of her Madame X tour due to hip and knee issues. She has not revealed exactly what surgery she has had, but her posts earlier this year may shed some light. In May, she posted that she was having regenerative treatment with an Xray of an injection into her right hip joint. Pramod Achan and Joshua Lee, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeons at OneWelbeck Orthopaedics, have taken a closer look at the hip surgery, possible courses of treatment, and how it could relate to other patients presenting with hip pain.

What was Madonna most likely to have been suffering from?

The hip showed signs of osteoarthritis. Whilst regenerative treatments such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) or stem cell injections have shown some promise in managing early wear and tear of hip joints, if it does not provide long lasting relief then further treatment options need to be considered, including joint replacement.

What is osteoarthritis?

Commonly referred to as “wear and tear” arthritis, it is the most common form of arthritis. This happens when the smooth articular cartilage that covers the end of joints, which allows the bones to glide against each other when a joint is bent and straightened, starts to roughen as it wears away. This damaged joint becomes painful as the joint is moved.

It can be associated with previous childhood hip problems or injury to the hip joint. Another important cause is femoroacetabular impingement (FAI). This is a common cause of hip or groin pain in younger patients which is often misdiagnosed and under treated. Earlier diagnosis and treatment may help to prevent the development of osteoarthritis of the hip in the future.

If you have unexplained hip and groin pain or previous hip problems then it is worth having this reviewed. Book a consultation with one of our specialist team of hip surgeons.

Could Madonna have had a hip replacement?

The x-rays Madonna posted did show quite a worn out hip joint and if this continued to be very painful despite the injections then the next step would be to consider a hip replacement.

She has a scar over the front of her hip joint which might indicate an Anterior Approach Hip replacement. This is a less common technique that avoids damage to major muscles as the surgeon works between them rather than cutting them. This leads to less pain which allows faster recovery and less risk of dislocation.

If you think you may have hip arthritis and wish to discuss treatment options including anterior approach hip replacement then contact OneWelbeck Orthopaedics today.


Pramod Achan is a Consultant Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgeon at OneWelbeck Orthopaedics. He focuses on lower limb joint preservation surgery, arthroscopic intervention, primary, complex primary and revision joint surgery.

Joshua Lee is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at OneWelbeck Orthopaedics, and he provides comprehensive treatment of hip and knee conditions, from sports injuries to joint replacement.

How OneWelbeck
can help

Here at OneWelbeck, we have a team of orthopedic specialists, state of the art facilities and diagnostics, and highly competitive financial packages for self-funding patients as well as those with private health care.


Written by Mr Joshua Lee

Mr Joshua Lee is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at OneWelbeck Orthopaedics. He provides comprehensive treatment of hip and knee conditions, from sports injuries to joint replacement.