Stage 1 Hip Osteoarthritis
You may not even know if you have Stage 1 osteoarthritis because many people have no symptoms. If anything, you may have a little pain or stiffness, and there may be small bone spurs in your hip joint.
At this point, prevention is the best medicine. Your doctor may recommend the supplements glucosamine and chondroitin. It is also advisable to stay active, engaging in regular exercise to strengthen your muscles and to stabilize and improve the flexibility of your joints.
When To Get Medical Advice
But see a GP if:
- your hip is still painful after 1 week of resting it at home
- you also have a fever or rash
- your hip pain came on suddenly and you have sickle cell anaemia
- the pain is in both hips and other joints as well
Your GP may ask you the following questions:
- Where do you feel the pain?
- When and how did the pain start?
- Does anything make the pain worse?
- Does anything make the pain better?
- Can you walk and bear weight on it?
- Do you have any other medical problems?
- Do you take any medicines?
Go straight to hospital if:
- the hip pain was caused by a serious fall or accident
- your leg is deformed, badly bruised or bleeding
- you’re unable to move your hip or bear any weight on your leg
- you have hip pain with a temperature and feel unwell
Youre On Uneven Terrain
Uneven ground can hurt your feet and challenge your ankle stability, but did you know it can also impact your hips? Thats because the joints are connected, rather than isolated, says Ann Clare, physiotherapist at MBST UK. The impact on the hips is coming from the feet up, she says.
If the ankles struggle to stabilise or fall out of alignment, it means theres more work for the other joints and muscles. A 2013 study found that walking on uneven terrain increased the amount of strain on the hip by 62% and increased activation in seven muscles in the lower leg and thighs. The authors dubbed this co-activation, showing how muscles are used to support each other when under extra force or instability.
Most of us probably dont want to walk on flat concrete, so what can you do to ease the pain when on grass or rocky walkways? Shock-absorbing insoles can help reduce the impact on the feet and ankles that in turn put pressure on the hips, advises Clare. And again, a gait analysis could be the way to go as it can help you find the shoe that supports your foot pattern.
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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:
The Best Exercises For Hip Arthritis
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , arthritis affects 54 million Americans, up to 24 million of whom experience limited mobility and discomfort. If you are one of these people, the idea of doing physical activities may seem counterintuitive, especially when you have hip arthritis and youre in pain. However, did you know that a lack of exercise can actually exacerbate your condition?
Although it may seem painful and uncomfortable, exercise can provide you with relief in the long run. Regular exercise can help strengthen your muscles and make your hip joint more stable, which is why orthopedic specialists recommend it as a crucial part of hip arthritis treatment.
Here are the best exercises for hip arthritis that you should discuss with your bone and joint specialist. Make sure to start with very little intensity and increase it slowly.
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.
Exercises On Uneven Terrain
2019 study noted that uneven terrain causes the ground reaction force to change with every stride. The constant need to adjust and stabilize the posture puts additional strain on the hip. The more uneven the surface, the more the hips need to work.
This supports the findings of a 2017 study , which showed that uneven terrain causes a variety of gait modifications, greater muscle coactivation, and a lower center of mass.
A person new to exercise should initially limit their workout area to smooth, even surfaces and avoid concrete and sand. Once they can tolerate these surfaces, they can gradually introduce surface changes.
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See A Hip Arthritis Specialist Asap
All too often, easily addressed problems turn into chronic conditions because people delay seeing a doctor. Dont wait until a hip replacement is the best treatment option. Most minor problems can be treated with physical therapy, injections, or an arthroscopic procedure, helping to preserve your joint before a replacement becomes necessary.
If you are suffering from hip pain or stiffness of any kind, it is important to schedule an appointment with a specialty trained orthopaedic hip surgeon. Dr. Drew Burleson specializes in treating various hip conditions, including arthritis.
Dr. Burleson will provide a thorough physical exam and a comprehensive review of your medical history to ensure his recommendations will be effective in helping you overcome or prevent hip arthritis. Dont let hip arthritis keep you from an active, pain-free lifestyle!
Take the next step to address your hip arthritis with proven treatment options and schedule your appointment with Dr. Drew Burleson at Beacon Orthopaedics. You may also schedule by phone 24/7 by calling 513-354-3700.
Treatment For Hip Arthritis
There is no cure for any type of arthritis, including hip arthritis, but there may be more ways to treat the pain and other symptoms than you would imagine.
For most patients with mild hip arthritis, early stages of treatment can include:
- Rest and ice.
- Anti-inflammatory medications .
- Acetaminophen .
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Stage 4 Hip Osteoarthritis
Since osteoarthritis is a progressive illness, eventually you may experience Stage 4 osteoarthritis in one or both hips. At this point, the cartilage would have become so thin and brittle and the synovial fluid so diminished that you experience pain and stiffness most of the time, even when youre not moving. Sometimes the pain can be very severe and can make it difficult for you to complete even the simplest of tasks, and can keep you awake at night too.
Hopefully by this stage you have been seeing an orthopedic surgeon, because your quality of life can greatly improve with the help of the right physician. They can review your options with you, which may include surgery to replace some or all of the arthritic hip. The surgical procedures available today are very successful, with faster and easier recoveries than ever before, and you can be left with a hip free of arthritis and free of pain.
Youre Walking Too Far
If youve gone from 30 minute strolls around your neighbourhood to suddenly taking on a half marathon walk, you should probably expect your body to feel a little uncomfortable. People can experience pain if they have had a sudden increase in walking duration, says Yasmin Milne, a specialist musculoskeletal physiotherapist at Pure Sports Medicine. Its because the muscles and joints are pushed beyond the capacity of what they can tolerate, and theres too much load put on the area.
The obvious way to get around this is to increase your mileage slowly, just like you would with running. Walking may be lower intensity, but long distances are tough on the body regardless of the speed or impact. Ensure youre taking adequate rest and recovery between walks and try not to increase your overall weekly load in terms of distance or time by more than 10% each week for injury prevention, adds Milne.
If you cant shorten the walking distance, Milne advises that taking rests if you start to feel discomfort allows time for the symptoms to settle.
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Precautions To Keep In Mind Before Exercising With Hip Arthritis
If youre new to exercise, its always smart to first talk to your doctor. Its important to consider the current limits of your joints, and work within those limits, explains Lauren Shroyer, MS, director of product development at the American Council on Exercise. Your doctor or physical therapist can make sure the exercises are safe for you and help you gain strength, without exacerbating inflammation or aggravating joint pain, she says. Likewise, if youve had surgery on your hip, get guidance from your doctor or physical therapist on what hip exercises are safe for you.
More tips to help protect your joints:
Start slowly. Ease your joints into exercise if you havent been active for a while, say experts. Push too hard too fast, and you can overwork your muscles and worsen joint pain. Go easy at first, then increase the length and intensity of your work out as you progress.
Move gently. Warm up your muscles with five to 10 minutes of stretching at the start of every exercise activity, says Dr. Johnson and do it again at the end. Dont force any stretches keep your movements slow and easy. With strength training, begin with fewer reps or lower weight, and build up gradually.
Stop if your hip hurts. Listen to the pain, says Shroyer. Take a break when your joints start to ache or you feel any new joint pain, its time to stop. Talk to your doctor about what pain is normal and when its a sign of something more serious.
Coping With Low Mood And Sleep Problems
You might find that osteoarthritis makes you feel depressed or anxious. Speak to your doctor if youre feeling low. They may be able to recommend psychological therapies to help you, such as cognitive behavioural therapy and a few stress-relieving techniques. If your sleep is disturbed because of hip osteoarthritis, this could make your pain feel worse. However, there are things you can do for yourself that might help, such as:
- Keep a sleep diary to work out if there are any patterns to your sleep problems.
- Sleep at regular times to get your body into a routine.
- Try to wind down before bed by having a warm bath or reading a book.
- For a more comfortable sleeping position, use a pillow between your legs if lying sideways, or use a pillow under your knees if lying on your back.
If youre still having problems, speak to your doctor or an occupational therapist. They can give you some tips and techniques. They may also refer you to a pain management clinic, where you can be shown how to live a more active life.
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Nonsurgical Treatments For Hip Arthritis
Nonsurgical approaches that reduce pain and disability include:
- activity modification
- weight loss
- physical therapy
The first line of treatment of hip arthritis includes activity modification, anti-inflammatory medication, hip injections and weight loss. Weight loss helps decrease the force that goes across the hip joint. Giving up activities that make the pain worse may make this condition bearable for some people. Anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen, naproxen and the newer Cox-2 inhibitors help alleviate the inflammation that may be contributing to the pain. Furthermore, studies have shown that walking with a cane significantly decreases the forces across the hip joint.
A combination of these non-operative measures may help ease the pain and disability caused by hip arthritis.
What Is Osteoarthritis
Arthritis means “joint inflammation.” It causes pain and swelling in the body’s joints, such as the knees or hips. There are many types of arthritis, but osteoarthritis is the most common. Also known as degenerative joint disease or age-related arthritis, osteoarthritis is more likely to develop as people get older.
Osteoarthritis occurs when inflammation and injury to a joint cause a breaking down of cartilage tissue. In turn, that breakdown causes pain, swelling, and deformity. Cartilage is a firm, rubbery material that covers the ends of bones in normal joints. It is primarily made up of water and proteins. The primary function of cartilage is to reduce friction in the joints and serve as a “shock absorber.” The shock-absorbing quality of normal cartilage comes from its ability to change shape when compressed. It can do this because of its high water content. Although cartilage may undergo some repair when damaged, the body does not grow new cartilage after it is injured.
The changes in osteoarthritis usually occur slowly over many years. There are, though, occasional exceptions.
The two main types of osteoarthritis are:
- Primary: More generalized osteoarthritis that affects the fingers, thumbs, spine, hips, and knees
- Secondary: Osteoarthritis that occurs after injury or inflammation in a joint, or as a result of another condition that may affect the composition of the cartilage, such as hemochromatosis
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What You Need To Know
- There are several types of hip arthritis, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and post-traumatic arthritis.
- The causes of hip arthritis vary depending on the type. The most common cause is age-related wear and tear in the hip joint.
- Symptoms of hip arthritis may include pain in or near the hip joint, stiffness, audible clicking sounds when moving the hip, and weakness.
- While hip arthritis is usually a chronic condition, there are treatments to help ease the symptoms and reduce further damage. If your quality of life suffers, surgery such as hip replacement can provide long-term relief.
What Is Hip Arthritis
Hip is where cartilage in the hip joint wears down or is damaged, leaving the bone surfaces of the joint to grind together and become rough. This causes pain and stiffness, making it difficult to move the leg.
There are different forms of hip arthritis, but all involve a loss of cartilage in the hip joint that eventually leads to bone rubbing on bone and destruction of the joint.
X-Ray of an arthritic hip
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How To Ease Buttock Pain From Arthritis
If youre experiencing buttock pain and youre not sure why, your primary care doctor is a good place to start. They may refer you to a rheumatologist or orthopedic doctor depending on your symptoms and circumstances.
If youre already diagnosed with arthritis and are experiencing buttock pain thats new or different, its important to let your doctor know. You might have an additional kind of arthritis or injury alongside your current diagnosis.
Step one for buttock pain treatment is following your arthritis treatment plan, says Dr. Lajam. Taking your medication as prescribed and maintaining a healthy weight can help relieve buttock pain caused by arthritis. Your doctor may recommend steroid injections in affected joints to help relieve the related buttock pain.
Also key: Staying active. Exercises that help stretch and strengthen low back, hip, and buttock muscles can also ease pain. Your doctor may advise physical therapy. You can also try these buttock pain exercises, recommended by Louw at APTA and Dr. Lajam from the AAOS.
How Is It Diagnosed
If you see your physical therapist first, the therapist will conduct a full examination that includes your medical history, and will ask you questions such as:
- When and how frequently do you feel pain and/or stiffness?
- What activities in your life are made difficult by this pain and stiffness?
Your physical therapist will perform special tests to help determine whether you have hip OA, such as:
- Gently moving your leg in all directions
- Asking you to resist as the physical therapist tries to gently push your leg and hip in different directions
- Watching you walk to check for limping
- Asking you to balance while standing
- Testing the mobility of the hip joint
- Watching how you climb stairs, how you move from one position to another, etc.
Your physical therapist may use additional tests to look for problems in other parts of your body, such as your lower back. The therapist may recommend that you consult with an orthopedist, who can order diagnostic testing such as an X-ray or MRI to confirm the diagnosis.
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