The prognosis of total hip arthroplasty is excellent and as many publications show, the survival of a good type of implant is well above 90 per cent at the 10-year follow-up. The results of the average orthopaedic surgeon may not match those obtained by the experts who have published these results. Therefore, in 1979 a prospective multicentre study was started in Sweden to evaluate the outcome of total hip arthroplasty. This National Hip Register has shown that the outcome is related to type of prosthesis, patient selection and operative technique. The results from one orthopaedic department to another differed considerably. The feedback from the Register resulted in improvements of the overall outcome and decrease of the differences between the orthopaedic departments in Sweden A Dutch National Implant Register is needed.