The Duke of Edinburgh is not alone having a hip replacement in his nineties, figures show.

There were 851 male patients aged 90 or over who underwent the procedure in 2016, according to figures from the National Joint Registry, which covers both private and NHS patients across England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man.

But Philip will not have needed to wait as long as the average NHS patient in England.

The 96-year-old had his procedure at the private King Edward VII’s hospital in Marylebone.

But official figures show that waiting times for hip replacements on the NHS are on the rise.

The average amount of time patients have been forced to wait before undergoing the procedure has steadily increased over the last four years, according to NHS Digital data.

Analysis of figures from hospitals in England show the average wait for people in need of a hip replacement rose from 85 days in 2013/14 to 97 days in 2016/17.

But the number of people in need of treatment has also substantially increased from 104,000 in 2013/14 to nearly 110,000 in 2016/17.

Hip replacements are a common type of elective surgery where a damaged hip joint is replaced with an artificial one.

After a replacement, most patients experience a reduction in pain and improvement in their range of movement.

The surgery usually takes around an hour to an hour-and-a-half to complete – during which patients are either given an epidural or put under general anaesthetic.

But the road to recovery can be a long one.

Information from NHS Choices states the rehabilitation process after surgery “can be a demanding time and requires commitment”.

It states that for the first four to six weeks after the operation, patients will need a walking aid, such as crutches.

Most people are able to resume normal activities within two to three months but it can take up to a year before patients experience the full benefits of a new hip, it adds.

The website states that the most common reason for hip replacement surgery is osteoarthritis.

Consultant orthopaedic surgeon Scarlett McNally, a Royal College of Surgeons council member, said: “Hip replacement is a very common type of surgery where a damaged ball-and-socket hip joint is replaced with an artificial joint.

(PA Graphics) (PA Graphics)

“It is one of the most clinically effective and cost-effective operations available.

“There is a multi-disciplinary team involved in post-operative care, including nurses, physiotherapists and surgeons.”

Mrs McNally said that patients need to learn to walk again with their new hip and build up muscles.

She added: “Every individual has different needs and recovers in different ways but the majority of patients can get back to their chosen lifestyle, a few weeks after surgery, free from pain and with improved mobility.”