Know Your Condition about Hip Pain

Hip pain can be caused by numerous factors such as arthritis, trauma or injury, avascular necrosis (AVN), cancer etc as outlined in the Causes of Pain section of the website. It is important to understand the signs and symptoms of a hip problem.

If the patient has a hip problem, then the following may be some warning signs. He/she may be:

  • Feeling pain in the hip or groin area (pain of the hip joint is usually felt in the groin area)
  • Limping to get from one place to another
  • Experiencing stiffness of their muscles
  • Experiencing reduced range of motion

Hip Osteoarthritis

Hip osteoarthritis is a condition wherein the cartilage surrounding the hip joint wears away and the hip joint gets swollen and inflamed causing pain and reduced range of motion. Initially, osteoarthritis patients will find relief while resting but when the cartilage wears away completely, the bones will rub against each other, making it very difficult to move. Bone spurs may build up at the edge of the joint as shown below in the picture. Usually, hip osteoarthritis patients move less due to their pain but this in turn weakens the muscles surrounding the hip joint, exacerbating the pain and causing the patient to limp.



Hip Replacement Surgery

An orthopedic surgeon will best be able to tell if hip replacement surgery is an effective treatment option for the patient’s condition. The time may be right in case a) the patient feels chronic pain (which increases during rain), b) medication and/or cane support isn’t helping relieve pain or aid mobility, c) the patient’s hip pain is interferinges with his/her sleep, d) the patient feels difficulty getting in and out of chairs and/or walking down stairs, e) the hip is swollen or stiff and/or f) there is a feeling of grating of the joints etc. It may be a good idea to closely track and monitor the symptoms and share the same while talking to the doctor.