Arthritis Clinics Ann Arbor MI
Inflammatory Arthritis of the Hip
In order to understand this condition it is important to understand the anatomy and function of the hip. Please read Hip Pain Info's section on the anatomy of the hip .
The word arthritis means inflammation (swelling) of a joint. There are many different types of arthritis but there are two main categories: inflammatory arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis in the hip. In osteoarthritis the inflammation of the hip is due to wearing away of the smooth coating (the articular cartilage) that covers the surfaces of the bones inside the hip.
Inflammatory arthritis is different than osteoarthritis. In inflammatory arthritis, the joint lining becomes inflamed and this irritates the joint. Unfortunately, someone with an inflammatory arthritis that involves the hip is at risk of eventually developing osteoarthritis of the hip.
Two common types of inflammatory arthritis that affect the hip are Rheumatoid Arthritis and Ankylosing Spondylitis.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is a disease of the immune system. Multiple joints on both sides of the body can be affected at the same time.
Ankylosing Spondylitis is a disease that results in chronic (long standing) inflammation of the spine and the sacroiliac joint (where the spine and the pelvis attach). Ankylosing Spondylitis can cause inflammation in other joints including the hip joint.
The treatment of inflammatory arthritis of the hip depends on the type and the severity. Most types of tre...
Osteoarthritis of the Hip
What is osteoarthritis?
The word arthritis means inflammation (swelling) of a joint. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis and results in the joint "wearing out" over time. For this reason, osteoarthritis is also called "wear and tear" arthritis.
What is osteoarthritis of the hip?
Articular cartilage covers the surface of the bones inside the hip. Articular cartilage is very smooth and it also cushions the joint surfaces. Over time the articular cartilage can thin or form cracks. Tiny pieces of cartilage may come loose, float inside the hip and irritate the joint. In some cases the cartilage can become completely "worn away" and the bones begin to rub together.
What does osteoarthritis of the hip feel like?
Osteoarthritis usually comes on slowly and results in pain and stiffness in the hip. Sometimes pain is felt further down the leg. Osteoarthritis does not always cause pain. The hip can have a mild amount of osteoarthritis and feel perfectly fine.
How is osteoarthritis of the hip detected?
Most types of treatment for osteoarthritis of the hip work best when started early, before there is a lot of "wear and tear". For this reason establishing a correct diagnosis is very important. In most cases osteoarthritis of the hip can be diagnosed based on the medical history, physical examination and an x-ray of the affected hip.
What causes osteoarthritis of the hip?
No one knows for sure what causes osteoarthritis of the hip to develop but some risk factors include:
What is the treatment for osteoarthritis of the hip?
Every osteoarthritic hip is different. There should be a team approach to treatment. Treatment options include exercises to improve range of motion and strength, medications to relieve pain and swelling, education on activity modification, weight loss, injections and in some cases surgery. Doctors and Physical Therapists that deal with people that have osteoarthritis can help outline a treatment program.
Is there a cure for osteoarthritis of the hip?
A lot can be done to help people who have osteoarthritis ...