A prospective, multi-centre study was carried out on 1421 total hip replacements between January 1999 and July 2007 to examine if obesity has an effect on clinical outcomes. The patients were categorised into three groups: non-obese (body mass index (BMI) < 30 kg/m(2)), obese (BMI 30 to 40 kg/m(2)) and morbidly obese (BMI > 40 kg/m(2)). The primary outcome measure was the change in Oxford hip score at five years. Secondary outcome measures included dislocation and revision rates, increased haemorrhage, deep infection, deep-vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism, mean operating time and length of hospital stay. Radiological analysis assessing heterotopic ossification, femoral osteolysis and femoral stem positioning was performed. Data were incomplete for 362 hips (25.5%) There was no difference in the change in the Oxford hip score, complication rates or radiological changes at five years between the groups. The morbidly obese group was significantly younger and required a significantly longer operating time. Obese and morbidly obese patients have as much to gain from total hip replacement as non-obese patients.