Thursday, June 13, 2024

What Are The Symptoms Of Arthritis In The Hip

I Feel Hip Pain From Running

Hip Arthritis: Symptoms, Diagnosis, Management, And Treatment

Many athletes, especially runners, are plagued by hip pain. If you are a runner experiencing hip pain, it can be tricky to find out what exactly is causing your symptoms. Some of the common culprits of hip pain in runners include:7

  • Hip flexor muscle strain: This can occur from one big injury or several small injuries over time. If you run on slick surfaces like snow, a backward pull can cause a hip flexor strain.
  • Hip tendonitis: Inflammation of the psoas tendon is common in runners, especially after youve increased mileage, done uphill training, or done speed work.
  • Hip bursitis: Pain on the outer side of the hip after activities like running can be due to greater trochanteric bursitis. This is an inflammation of a bursa in the hip.
  • Stress fractures: High-impact activities like running place great force on the hip. This can lead to a stress fracture . The pain is usually felt in the groin or front of the hip. It is worse with running and goes away with rest. Medical care is critical for a stress fracture because without treatment it can lead to severe hip damage.8
  • Hip osteoarthritis: Arthritis of the hip can cause persistent hip pain in runners, especially in older athletes. Wear and tear lead to a loss of cartilage, which in turn causes friction, pain, and inflammation in the hip.9
  • Cartilage tears : Repetitive activities like running can cause the hip labrum to tear, leading to symptoms like pain and stiffness.9

What Are The Treatment Options For Hip Pain

If hip arthritis is what is causing your hip pain, your doctor will recommend the appropriate treatment for your condition.

Arthritis has no cure, so most treatment methods are usually focused on managing symptoms. Your doctor will likely recommend one of these options:

  • Physical therapy
  • PRP therapy
  • Alternative medicine, such as acupuncture

Your doctor will use up all non-invasive treatment options before recommending surgery. However, if you are experiencing severe hip arthritis, surgery might be your best treatment option. The type of surgery for hip arthritis varies according to your needs. These include:

  • Anterior hip replacement
  • Total hip replacement
  • Hip resurfacing

Patients who are suffering from severe arthritis often benefit from hip replacement surgery. Our hip surgeons, Dr. Timothy Bopp and Dr. Brian Dahl, at The Bone & Joint Center, offer a range of hip replacement options, including total hip replacement, minimally invasive total hip replacement, anterior minimally invasive hip replacement, and computer navigation hip replacement.

Other Symptoms Of Hip Osteoarthritis

In addition to pain, people with hip arthritis often report one or more of the following symptoms:

StiffnessDecreased cushioning from loss of cartilage and hip joint swelling can make the hip feel stiff. Stiffness will often occur first thing in the morning or after sitting for a long period. Stiffness may or may not be accompanied by a loss of range of motion.

Normally, the hips ball-and-socket construction allows for a wide range of motion. Hip osteoarthritis may make it particularly difficult to spread the legs apart, extend the leg straight back, or to point toes inward and move the entire leg in that direction .

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What Tests Are There


X-rays are often the best way of finding out whats wrong with your hip as they show the condition of the bones. They may also show problems in your pelvis which could explain your pain. Theyre not as useful for looking at the soft tissues around the joint.

CT scans

A CT scan can often be very helpful to work out if the hip joint has an unusual shape. CT scans use x-rays to show sections or slices of the hip, which a computer then puts together to form a 3D image of the hip.

There are conditions where the socket of the hip can be very shallow, and a CT scan can show this.

MRI scans

MRI scans use radio waves to build a picture to show whats happening to the soft tissue, such as the muscles and tendons, inside your hip. Theyre particularly helpful for diagnosing the painful condition avascular necrosis, which reduces the flow of blood to the ends of bone, causing them to collapse .

Blood tests

If your doctor thinks your pain is caused by an infection or rheumatoid arthritis, blood tests can often help.

Basics Of Hip Arthritis

Osteoarthritis of the Hip

Many kinds of arthritis can affect the hip joint. The most common type of hip arthritis is osteoarthritis, which some people call “degenerative joint disease.”

Osteoarthritis occurs when the joint surface cartilage becomes worn away leaving the raw bone beneath exposed. The cartilage normally serves as a pad or a bearing in the joint. Under normal conditions, the cartilage bearing is slicker than a hockey puck on ice. When the bearing wears away, the result is a roughed joint surface that causes the pain and stiffness that people associate with osteoarthritis .

Osteoarthritis of the hip is a serious condition. Osteoarthritis is the most common of the more than 100 kinds of arthritis and the hip joint is the second most commonly affected large joint in the body.

Osteoarthritis is a chronic disease that can takes months to years to appear. While it is not curable, it most certainly is treatable using activity modifications, medications, and/or injections. If those interventions dont work, hip replacement surgery often will relieve the pain associated with hip arthritis.

Osteoarthritis of the hip results in pain, stiffness, and joint deformity. The symptoms of osteoarthritis can affect ones ability to walk, work, and enjoy life.

For most patients who have mild arthritis, pain can be managed with ice, rest, activity modifications, pills, or joint injections.

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Common Hip Pain Symptoms: What Do They Mean

Your hip supports the weight of your body and is one of your most active joints. Pain in your hip can keep you from living the life you want. In this guide, we go through different hip pain symptoms and what they mean.

Juhi Modi

Your hip is one of the largest joints in your body. It is a major weight-bearing joint that undergoes considerable stress during everyday activities like standing, walking, and running.1

The stresses placed upon your hip when you walk can be up to 5 times your body weight. If youre carrying a load, running, or climbing stairs, the stress on your hips is higher.2

Even if you do not lead a very active lifestyle, your hips undergo considerable strain during everyday tasks and occupational activities. Your hip joint is built to withstand stressors, but it is not indestructible. With age, the cartilage in the hip can become worn down. Hip bones may break due to a fall or injury. Muscles and tendons can be damaged due to overuse. Any of these conditions can lead to hip pain symptoms. But if you are suffering from hip pain, how can you tell what might be causing your discomfort?

Looking for a solution to hip pain symptoms? Try the Injurymap exercise app now.

Signs Of Advanced Hip Arthritis

Of course, the symptoms for arthritis in the hip change and increase as the disease progresses. Even with treatment, this degenerative disease continues to worsen in the following ways.

  • Increased pain even without weight-bearing activities
  • Limping or difficulty walking
  • Difficulty getting up and down from chairs
  • Hip swelling

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Getting A Hip Arthritis Diagnosis

Doctors rely a great deal on a patients description of symptoms for making a diagnosis of hip arthritis. Many of the symptoms are difficult to see but can be acutely felt by the patient. However, doctors will also spend time during an initial consultation to discuss the patients past medical and surgical history as well as his or her family history of arthritis and other musculoskeletal disorders. In addition, a doctor will complete a physical examination, which could include range of motion tests and gait tests, while recommending Xrays and blood tests to check for other possible disorders.

Hip arthritis is not instantly terrible but instead develops over several months to years. It is important to catch signs and symptoms early to seek early interventions that can help individuals age gracefully without excessive pain.

When To Contact A Doctor

3 Most Common Signs of Hip Arthritis

People can speak with a doctor if they have unexplained hip pain or any other symptoms of RA. An early and accurate diagnosis can help in providing effective treatment for the condition.

A doctor may refer people to a rheumatologist, who is a doctor specializing in inflammatory conditions developing in the joints, tendons, ligaments, bones, and muscles.

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What Hip Symptoms Of Ra Feel Like

Hip pain doesnt always indicate rheumatoid arthritis. It may be from another kind of arthritis, like psoriatic arthritis, or from a pinched nerve, tight muscles around the hips and buttocks, or simple overuse.

When your hip pain is due to inflammation caused by RA, you may experience other symptoms as well.

Here are some of the signs of hip pain from RA:

  • dull ache around the groin, buttocks, or thighs
  • heat or warmth to the touch around the hips, buttocks, thighs, and groin
  • pain or stiffness in the morning, which may reduce with movement or activity
  • difficulty standing or walking, due to pain in the hip joint
  • limping, often after RA progression leads to further joint damage

As RA can affect your whole body, you may also experience generalized symptoms like:

  • high temperature
  • sweating

RA can affect both hips, as the condition often creates symptoms in the same joint on both sides of the body.

Comparing Arthritis And Bursitis Symptoms

Is your hip pain caused by osteoarthritis, bursitis, or something else? A closer look at the symptoms of osteoarthritis and bursitis may provide you clues.

Symptoms that suggest hip osteoarthritis include:

  • Pain that originates from the inside of the hip joint and may also be felt in the groin and thigh, and occasionally the buttock
  • Increased hip joint stiffness and/or decreased range-of-motion
  • Grating or creaking sensations, known as crepitus
  • Referred pain in the knee

Read more about Hip Osteoarthritis Symptoms

Symptoms that suggest hip bursitis include:

  • Hip pain that is felt on the outside of the lower hip
  • Pain and tenderness that increases when pressure is put on the affected hip, such as when lying on your side

Read more about Hip Bursitis Symptoms

Keep in mind that its possible to have hip osteoarthritis and hip bursitis at the same time. It is also possible to have hip osteoarthritis or hip bursitis alongside another condition, such as a tight IT band, a hip labrum tear, or low back arthritis. A doctor can provide you with a definitive diagnosis and recommend treatment.

Luckily, the pain and symptoms of both hip bursitis and hip osteoarthritis can be treated. Common nonsurgical treatments for both conditions include ice or heat therapy, anti-inflammatory medications, therapeutic injections, and physical therapy. Occasionally, severe cases are treated with surgery.

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Do You Have Hip Arthritis

The primary symptom of hip arthritis is pain. It ranges from being mild to severe and is described as dull aching, sharp, burning, or throbbing, among other sensations. Pain is typically felt in the hip area but the exact location of the pain may vary.

Apart from pain, common symptoms may also include:

  • Limited range of motion
  • Stiffness in the hip area, particularly right after waking up in the morning
  • Pain radiating to the groin, buttock, lower back, thigh, or knee
  • Walking with a limp

In general, pain may be felt differently between the two main categories of arthritis:

  • Inflammatory arthritis pain is often described as deep, sharp, stiff, burning, or tingling. Inflammatory pain is usually relieved with movement and may be worsened with prolonged rest.
  • Osteoarthritis pain is commonly described as dull aching or soreness. This kind of pain typically gets worse with movement or activity and improves with periods of rest.

A person experiencing hip arthritis can expect to have these symptoms get worse over time. At first, it can be intermittent and limited to certain activities, but the hip joint will often keep deteriorating. Hip arthritis onset may be rapid with deterioration of the range of motion in the hip. A patient can go from having no signs to requiring a hip replacement in less than 24 months.

How Does Arthritis Affect The Hips

Arthritis  Knee and Hip Website

The hip is commonly affected by arthritis, particularly osteoarthritis . You may notice pain in your hip, groin, buttock and/or thigh areas, felt as sharp pain or an ache. It is often most noticeably when you walk, climb stairs, stand up from a seated position, squat and/or first get out of bed in the morning.

There are many things that can help you manage arthritis of the hip. The first steps are regular exercise, weight loss and using medicines wisely

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Pharmacotherapy Of Hip Arthrosis

The drugs are useful to control pain in hip osteoarthritis. In addition, they improve the functionality of the people affected.

Analgesics, the most used medications. They reduce pain and improve the stiffness of the joint. The most common analgesic is paracetamol.

Anti-inflammatories, the non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, they are used especially when the pain is more acute.

Chondroprotection: are constituent substances of articular cartilage and reduce pain. Glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate included in this group.

Interarticular therapy or infiltrations, the anti-inflammatory substances administered inside the joint. In most cases, glucocorticoids infiltrated and, more recently, hyaluronic acid.

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 replacementsurgeries possible. Rather than removing the ball of the hip socket, the surgeon covers it with a metal cap.

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One Common Pain Two Different Problems

Two likely causes of hip pain are osteoarthritis and bursitis. They have similar symptoms, but very different reasons for causing pain.

Hip osteoarthritis develops as the joints cartilage wears down. WatchHip Osteoarthritis Video

  • Hip osteoarthritis occurs when the slippery, protective cartilage in the hip joint thins or disappears. When the cartilage is damaged, there can be painful friction between the bones that make up the hips ball-and-socket. Bone spurs may form as the cartilage degenerates, which can make the bone-on-bone friction worse.

    See What Is Hip Osteoarthritis?

  • Hip bursitis occurs when the bursa in the hip become inflamed. Throughout the body, bursae provide cushion and reduce friction between bones and the soft tissues that run over them during joint movement. In the hip, the bursa most likely to become inflamed is the trochanteric bursa.

    Inflammation of the trochanteric bursa typically occurs alongside inflammation in the hips abductor tendons .1 Both the trochanteric bursa and abductor tendons are located at the bony knob near the top of the thighbone , near the outward curve of the upper thigh.

  • Because of its tendency to share symptoms with hip osteoarthritis and other hip conditions, hip bursitis is sometimes called the great mimicker.

    How Does The Hip Joint Work

    Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment of Hip and Knee Arthritis

    The hip is a ball-and-socket joint. The ball, at the top of the femur is called the femoral head. The socket, called the acetabulum, is a part of the pelvis. The ball moves in the socket, allowing the leg to rotate and move forward, backward and sideways.

    In a healthy hip, the ball and socket are covered by a glistening layer called articular cartilage. This cartilage, which can be seen on an as the space in between the ball and the socket, is what allows the bones of the hip joint to glide together smoothly with less resistance than ice sliding on ice. In addition, there is a special layer of exceptionally strong cartilage in the acetabulum called the labrum. The structure of the hip joint gives it a wide range of motion. It is a very stable joint because of the large area of between the femoral head and the labrum-lined acetabulum.

    Illustration and X-ray image of a healthy hip joint.

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    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.

    Symptoms Of Hip Arthritis

    Hip arthritis may cause any of the following symptoms:

    • Hip pain thatâs worst in the morning.
    • Hip pain that worsens after long periods of inactivity.
    • A feeling of locking, sticking, grating, or grinding when moving the upper leg.
    • Stiffness and inflexibility in the hip joint. May cause limping.
    • Pain that starts from within the hip socket and radiates outward. It can be felt in the buttocks, groin, and thigh.

    Osteoarthritis is the culmination of many years of joint deterioration. Age, obesity, and frequent strenuous activity all contribute to cartilage breakdown and can lead to the disease.

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    Conditions With Similar Symptoms

    A number of conditions that are not actually related to the hip joint can cause hip joint pain and symptoms in the “hip” area. These include:

    Spinal stenosis This condition most commonly causes pain in the buttock, low back, and back of the upper thigh . Spinal stenos is a lower-back problem, not a hip problem. Spinal stenosis causes pain in the buttock area that some identify as part of the “hip.”

    Greater trochanteric bursitisThis causes pain over the point of the hip . It also causes tenderness and sensitivity to pressure. Although this seems like a hip problem, it is a problem well away from the joint itself and is related to an inflammation in a lubrication point called a bursa. Greater trochanteric bersitis is not a joint problem .

    Non-orthopedic conditionsVery occasionally, non-orthopedic conditions can cause pain in the groin that masquerades as hip joint symptoms ovarian cysts, hernias, and other intra-pelvic conditions can sometimes cause pain that is mistaken for hip joint pain.

    Other types of arthritisOther forms of arthritis can cause similar symptoms to osteoarthritis of the hip in particular, post-traumatic arthritis and avascular necrosis are almost indistinguishable in many cases from osteoarthritis of the hip.

    The diagnosis of osteoarthritis versus rheumatoid arthritis can be made by a physician with experience in treating conditions of this type.

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