Making Sense Of Your Hip Pain
Hip pain is a common complaint that can have many causes, from arthritis to muscle strain. In some cases, these issues could be signs you might need a hip replacement surgery, especially if you continue to experience pain and discomfort.
If youre experiencing unexplained and worsening hip pain, contact us today for a consultation with one of our hip joint specialists.
What Is Osteoarthritis Of The Hip
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, and the hip is the second most commonly affected joint.
Everyones joints go through a normal cycle of wear and repair during their lifetime. As your joints repair themselves, their shape and structure can change. If this happens in one or more of your joints, its known as osteoarthritis.
A joint is a part of the body where two or more bones meet. Your hip joint consists of a ball at the top of the thigh bone, which fits into a socket in your pelvis.
The ends of both bones in a joint are covered by a smooth slippery surface, known as cartilage. This is the soft but tough tissue that allows the bones to move against each other without friction.
Osteoarthritis causes the cartilage in your hip joint to become thinner and the surfaces of the joint to become rougher. This can cause swelling, pain and stiffness, but not everyone will have these symptoms.
The exact cause of osteoarthritis is often not known, as there can be quite a few reasons why a person develops the condition. These include the genes inherited from your parents.
Osteoarthritis usually starts in people over the age of 45 and is more common in women than men.
Research has shown that injuries, and jobs that involve heavy lifting or long periods of standing up, are associated with an increased risk of developing hip osteoarthritis.
Being overweight can also be a factor, as it increases the load on your joints.
What Is Hip Osteoarthritis
In hip osteoarthritis, the cartilage of the hip gradually wears away, becoming rough and damaged. As cartilage disappears, the leg and hip bones rub directly on each other and become damaged. The damaged bones may even change shape and cause bone spurs. All of this can cause pain, stiffness, decreased range of motion, and difficulty in daily tasks like bending over or walking.
Despite recent advances in medical therapies, there is no cure for osteoarthritis. If you seek help early, you can help to reduce its impact on your life. There are many treatments for arthritis that do not involve surgery.
Lie On Your Stomach To Relax Tight Hip Flexors
People with hip pain typically try not to stand much, since it can be an uncomfortable position. But sitting shortens the hip flexor muscles, which can actually increase pain, says Genie Lieberman, the director of the Gloria Drummond Physical Rehabilitation Institute at the Boca Raton Regional Hospital in Florida.
To promote the full extension of the hips, Lieberman recommends lying face down for up to 30 minutes, with small pillows placed under your shoulders for comfort. You can do this on your bed turn your head to either side and rest it on your forearms for comfort. In the beginning, it may be too painful to stay this way for more than a few seconds, but as you stretch the muscles it will get easier.
Recommended Reading: Is Bee Pollen Good For Arthritis
When To See A Healthcare Provider
Hip pain is fairly common among adults in the United States, and while it can sometimes improve on its own, experts recommend bringing it up to your healthcare provider to get a formal diagnosis.
Your primary care provider or healthcare professional may refer you to an orthopedic physician if your hip pain seems like it may be osteoarthritis, or a rheumatologist if your hip pain appears to be inflammatory like RA, PsA, AK, or SLE.
Be sure to mention whether your hip pain comes on suddenly, is gradual, or is sporadic. Hip arthritis symptoms tend to progress as the condition worsensbut they dont always progress steadily with time, meaning that the pain intensity can change by the day, environment, or activity.
Seek immediate medical attention if your hip pain is sudden, severe, worsening, or if youve had an injury from falling or another trauma. You should also consider seeking urgent care if you experience any of the following along with your hip pain:
- Inability to walk or bear weight
- Warmth radiating from the hip area
Osteoarthritis Of The Hip: What You Need To Know
Osteoarthritis of the hip, one of the most common forms of osteoarthritis, results from wear and tear of cartilage within the joint. Pain and stiffness present challenges to simple routines, from putting on shoes to getting out of a car, and may limit more active pursuits.
Treatments can keep pain in check, lessen the impact on daily life, and help a person stay active. If you and your physician determine that a total hip replacement is your best option, you are in good company. More than 277,000 people in the US underwent the procedure in the United States from 2012 to 2016, according to the American Joint Replacement Registry. And success is high: Most people who have total joint replacement of the hip experience satisfactory relief. More than 90 percent will not require further treatment in the subsequent 10 years.
Hip replacement is one of the real triumphs of recent medical history because patients generally do so well, said Jeffrey K. Lange, MD, an orthopaedic surgeon at Brigham and Womens Hospital. The basic principles of hip replacement surgery have remained relatively unchanged, though with some modifications, in recent years. But each year of experience has shown how to improve results, including faster recovery.
In our latest iteration, its not the technology or the technique thats so different, said Dr. Lange. Its our ability to get people moving afterward.
What Can Cause Hip Arthritis To Flare Up
The hip joint is a ball-and-socket joint and is one of the largest joints in the human body. The sections of bone in the joint are protected by cartilage, which is a tough, smooth tissue designed to absorb shock, reduce friction, and allow the bones to glide together smoothly. When the cartilage wears down, this causes arthritis due to bone-on-bone rubbing.
If you have hip arthritis, you know that some days can be better than others. When arthritis symptoms such as pain, stiffness, and swelling become worse or more intense, this is known as a flare-up.
A flare-up can come on unexpectedly and can take a toll on your lifestyle. Lets talk about what can cause hip arthritis to flare up, and where you can go for an orthopedic evaluation and treatment that reduces or eliminates your hip pain.
Surgical Treatments For Hip Arthritis
If the non-operative methods have failed to make a person’s condition bearable, surgery may be the best option to treat hip arthritis. The exact type of surgery depends upon a patient’s age, anatomy, and underlying condition.
Surgical options for hip arthritis range from operations that preserve the hip joint to those that completely rebuild it. They include:
Risk Factors For Hip Arthritis
- Age. The older you are, the more likely you have worn out the cartilage in your hip joint.
- Excess weight. Being overweight or obese puts additional stress on the hips.
- Injury. Severe injury, such as a hip fracture or labral tears, can cause arthritis years later.
- Overuse. Jobs and sports that require physically repetitive motions that place stress on the hip can increase risk for developing osteoarthritis.
- Gender. Women who are postmenopausal are more likely to develop hip osteoarthritis than men. Rheumatoid arthritis affects women more than men.
- Structural or developmental abnormalities. Irregularly shaped bones forming the hip joint, such as with hip dysplasia and impingement, can lead to abnormal stress on the cartilage.
- Autoimmune triggers. While the causes of rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis remain unknown, triggers of autoimmune diseases are an area of active investigation. For example, infection is believed to be one of the triggers for psoriasis.
- Genetics. Certain autoimmune conditions that lead to hip arthritis may run in the family.
- Other health conditions. People with diabetes, high cholesterol, hemochromatosis and vitamin D deficiency are more likely to develop osteoarthritis.
How Ra Affects The Hips
RA may initially occur in your smaller joints in a symmetrical pattern. Since theres no cure, the disease can advance to other parts of your body. When diagnosed with RA, hip involvement typically happens later in life.
Hip pain may start off as mild and intermittent. You may only feel discomfort with certain activities, like weight-bearing exercises. This includes:
- climbing stairs
- playing tennis
Pain while completing these activities may come and go at first. But as the disease progresses and damages your hip joint, pain can become more regular or constant. Discomfort may continue while at rest or sleeping.
Getting A Proper Diagnosis
Other common sources of hip pain include stress fractures, muscle strains and hip dislocations.
Arthritis is difficult to self-diagnose. Talk with your primary care doctor as soon as possible about your symptoms. You may be referred to a rheumatologist or orthopedist to get an accurate diagnosis so you can get the appropriate medical care you need. Left undiagnosed and untreated, your condition may worsen and cause disability.
During Pain Awareness Month in September and all year long, weve got you covered with unique pain management tools and resources you wont find anywhere else.
How Does Osteoarthritis Affect The Hip Joint
Patients who have osteoarthritis of the hip sometimes have problems walking. Diagnosis can be difficult at first. That’s because pain can appear in different locations, including the groin, thigh, buttocks, or knee. The pain can be stabbing and sharp or it can be a dull ache, and the hip is often stiff.
What Is Hip Resurfacing
Hip resurfacing is a surgical option that can provide relief while delaying hip replacement surgery. In hip resurfacing, the diseased hip joint surfaces are removed surgically and substituted with metal. However, the entire femur bone is preserved. That makes future hip replacement surgeries possible. Rather than removing the ball of the hip socket, the surgeon covers it with a metal cap.
Causes Of Ra In The Hips
RA is an autoimmune disease. Hip pain from RA results from an inflammation of the synovium, the tissue lining of a joint.
The synovium makes fluid to aid in joint mobility. Synovial cells also replicate in the joint space. This is known as synovial proliferation.
But with RA, this tissue swells and becomes painful. The bone and cartilage of the joint may eventually break down.
Its the inflammatory action of RA that causes the main symptoms of hip pain. Less often, the wear and tear of the joints contribute to hip pain. When RA is in remission, degenerative joint damage can still cause hip pain.
According to the , the chances of developing RA are greater among people born with certain genes, specifically the HLA class II genotypes.
Other factors also increase the risk of developing RA, like
Surgery For Hip Arthritis
The progression of hip arthritis and effectiveness of various nonsurgical treatments varies. If nonsurgical options dont provide the desired pain relief and your quality of life suffers, it may be time to consider surgical options, such as:
- Hip replacement surgery, or hip arthroplasty, is a procedure to replace one or both ends of a damaged hip joint with artificial implants.
- Hip fusion is a procedure to fuse the bones of the hip joint together. It used to be the standard surgical treatment for hip arthritis before replacement surgeries became available, but is now a last-resort treatment as it severely impacts mobility.
What Does Arthritis In The Hip Feel Like And What Could An Orthopedic Doctor Recommend To Help Me
Almost 60 million Americans have arthritis, which is inflammation in one or more joints. It is not only painful but can also lead to limited movement in the affected joint. Some types of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis, can spread to tissues and organs far beyond the joints.
In the most common type of arthritis, which is osteoarthritis, there is a loss and wearing-down of the protective cartilage in the joint. This causes a bone in the joint to rub against the other bone during movement, causing considerable pain, stiffness, and swelling.
Since arthritis typically starts with minor discomfort that gradually gets worse over time, it pays to know the signs and symptoms of arthritis so it can be treated as early and effectively as possible. The joints which are most commonly reported to have arthritis are the hip, knee, shoulder, elbow, wrist, and ankle, so here well talk about hip arthritis and what a Raleigh orthopedic doctor can do for you.
Summary Of Hip Arthritis
- Osteoarthritis of the hip is common and can result in severe hip joint pain and disability. as a result of this condition, several hundred thousand people each year in the U.S. undergo total hip replacement.
- Most people with osteoarthritis of the hip can be managed without surgery.
- The cause of osteoarthritis of the hip is not known but some risk factors include obesity, severe hip trauma, and acquired conditions in adulthood, such as osteonecrosis and genetics.
- There are many other kinds of arthritis that can affect the hip. It is important to make sure that the correct diagnosis is made as some of these other conditions are treated very differently.
- The diagnosis of osteoarthritis of the hip is usually very straightforward and is made in almost all cases by a physician taking a thorough history, performing a physical examination, and getting x-rays with the patient standing up.
- Patients usually seek care for the typical symptoms of hip arthritis, including pain located in the groin thigh or buttock. The pain associated with osteoarthritis of the hip is generally worse with weight bearing or twisting. Stiffness and leg-length inequality are other symptoms.
What Is Bursitis Of The Hip
Bursitis of the hip or of any joint occurs when the jelly-like sacs positioned between bones and soft tissue are irritated and inflamed. These sacs, called bursae, act as a cushion for your joints. Bursitis, put simply, is the inflammation of bursa anywhere in your body.
There are two types of hip bursitis: trochanteric bursitis and iliopsoas bursitis. Trochanteric bursitis is caused by the bursa on the outside point of the hip, on the greater trochanter of the femur. The second type of hip bursitis is when the iliopsoas bursa, which is located on the groin side of the hip, is inflamed. While trochanteric bursitis is more common than iliopsoas bursitis, both are treated similarly.
What Are The Symptoms Of Osteoarthritis Of The Hip
If you have any of the following symptoms of hip osteoarthritis, talk to your doctor:
- Joint stiffness that occurs as you are getting out of bed
- Joint stiffness after you sit for a long time
- Any pain, swelling, or tenderness in the hip joint
- A sound or feeling of bone rubbing against bone
- Inability to move the hip to perform routine activities such as putting on your socks
Orthopedic Treatment For Arthritis Of The Hip
The only cure for hip arthritis is a total hip replacement, and this may provide relief for several decades.
Depending on your age, health, lifestyle, and the severity of your condition, your orthopedic doctor may recommend one or a combination of the following treatment options:
- Pain management through medication
- Lifestyle changes to reduce strain on your hip
- Weight loss to reduce the force placed on your hip joint
- The use of assistive devices, such as a cane or walker, to alleviate pressure on the hip when walking
- Hip replacement surgery
A hip replacement involves your orthopedic surgeon removing the damaged bone tissues of the hip and replacing them with bio-grade prosthetic materials. Your new hip will work almost exactly like your original hip did, before arthritis, as far as having a smooth movement without the severe pain of arthritis.
Managing Arthritis Pain And Fatigue
Several approaches can be used to manage the pain associated with osteoarthritis of the hip including:
- Activity modification appropriate kinds of exercise and weight loss when necessary may alleviate some hip arthritis symptoms
- Nutritional supplementation are helpful to some patients, although the literature on these supplements is not consistently in favor of their use
- Non-narcotic pain tablets , or over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, if medically appropriate, sometimes are helpful
- Prescription strength, non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs are useful for some patients, though, in general, long-term use of these drugs is discouraged
- Arthritis unloader braces or hip sleeves are helpful for some patterns of arthritis
- Joint injections might help
- Total hip replacement surgery may be used if non-operative interventions dont suffice.