Harvin made the announcement on his Twitter account on Tuesday night, hours after getting a second opinion on the hip injury in New York. The Seahawks then said the operation was scheduled for Thursday, but no timetable for recovery was provided.
Harvin was seeking more information about the hip soreness in the area of his labrum that popped up just before the Seahawks opened training camp. Harvin noted the discomfort when he reported for camp last Wednesday.
"When everything is goin good sometimes life throw u a curve ball... sorry to half to report that my injury will require surgery," Harvin wrote on his Twitter page. "Nobody was more anxious and excited about season then....but I will be back strong as ever."
Seattle coach Pete Carroll has not indicated which hip is bothering Harvin. He said earlier in the day that the team was still gathering information about Harvin's second opinion.
Harvin started training camp on the physically unable to perform list and likely will remain there until the team has a better idea of his recovery time. If Harvin starts the season on the PUP list he must miss the first six weeks and would have to return to practice by the end of Week 11 to avoid missing the entire season.
The loss of Harvin is significant, but not a huge setback for a team that relies on the legs of Marshawn Lynch and timely passing by Russell Wilson to drive its offense. Seattle invested significantly in Harvin, giving up draft picks to acquire him from Minnesota and signing him to a six-year deal reportedly worth up to $67 million.
But Seattle's offense averaged 32.9 points over the final nine games of last season without Harvin.
If the Seahawks need a timeline of how the recovery might go, they only need to look at fellow Seattle receiver Sidney Rice, who underwent hip surgery in August 2010, and then returned to action in Week 11 after missing the first 2½ months of the season.
While Harvin was in New York on Tuesday, Rice was in Europe undergoing a procedure to help his knee, Carroll said. The procedure is non-surgical and Rice was expected to return to practice once he arrived back in Seattle.
Carroll seemed so unconcerned about Rice's procedure he jokingly asked reporters to guess where Rice was. Rice had been limited in practice the last few days before heading to Switzerland for the procedure. While Carroll didn't get into specifics, he said it's focused on addressing a muscle around Rice's knee and this was the only time available to have the procedure done.
"He was practicing fine when he was out here but this was a procedure that they've been waiting to do," Carroll said. "When he comes back here he'll go right back on the field. He didn't get hurt. We're just trying to help him along and we think we have something going here that might really help him."
Seattle also was without defensive end Cliff Avril, offensive tackle Michael Bowie and cornerback Ron Parker. All three players are dealing with hamstring issues that will keep them sidelined a few days.
NOTES: Seattle released TE Victor Marshall and re-signed LB/TE Jameson Konz following Tuesday's practice. Konz was originally selected by Seattle in the seventh round of the 2010 NFL draft. He appeared in one game in 2011 before injuring his knee and landing on injured reserve. ... DE Michael Bennett was absent from practice to attend to the birth of his child.