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Capitals’ Hagelin Undergoes Hip Resurfacing Surgery

Washington Capitals forward Carl Hagelin has undergone left hip resurfacing surgery. He is out indefinitely.



ARLINGTON, V.A. — After undergoing hip surgery before the start of the 2022-23 regular season and working towards getting back on the ice over the last few months, Washington Capitals forward Carl Hagelin has undergone left hip resurfacing surgery. He is out indefinitely.

Hagelin underwent the procedure on Monday at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City after dealing with lingering hip issues. He will begin rehabilitation and a "lengthy" recovery process immediately.

It is the same procedure that Nicklas Backstrom had back in June and has since returned from. Backstrom said that hip resurfacing surgery was a "game changer" that has not only allowed him to skate and play without pain, but function in daily life and do things like tie his shoes and play with his children.

"I think it was just like, went back to… I don't know, calmness in my body if that makes sense," Backstrom said of the procedure. "It was just a nice feeling, you know? And I felt it right away, which was nice. It was an awesome feeling for me personally."

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The experimental procedure is different from hip replacement surgery and addresses issues with the ball-and-socket joint. It involves capping the femoral head, which is the head of the thighbone and the "ball" of the hip, with a smooth metal covering. Then, the damaged bone and cartilage within the acetabulum, which is the "socket," are removed and replaced with a metal shell. This allows the ball and socket to glide painfully against each other, relieving pain rather than having the bones grind against each other.

Usually, the procedure takes around one to three hours.

Hagelin has not played since Feb. 28, 2022 and had skated in 53 games last season before suffering a career-threatening eye injury at a March 1 practice. Hagelin took a high stick under the visor that went through his left eye and ruptured his choroid, causing partial vision loss and altering his depth perception. He had been working his way back from that and was skating ahead of the season before undergoing a procedure to address hip pain back in October. He has been skating on his own in a non-contact jersey, but it appears that the hip pain returned and led him to undergo hip resurfacing.

The 34-year-old remains on the long-term injured reserve and is an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season.

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