Hip arthritis is the loss of the normal healthy cartilage that allows smooth, painless motion of the hip joint. Without normal cartilage, the rough underlying bone rubs against bone causing inflammation and pain. This worsens over time to cause stiffness, osteophyte or bone spur formation and even wearing away of the underlying bone.
Causes of hip arthritis include aging, genetics, obesity, hip dysplasia and previous injury to the hip.
Commonly, patients with hip arthritis will report grinding pain in the groin that is worse with excessive activity and improved with anti-inflammatory medications. Arthritic hips can also be very stiff which can make it difficult for patients to put on their shoes or get in and out of a car.
The diagnosis is made from discussing your symptoms, examining the hip and evaluating x-rays.
Nonsurgical treatment includes: activity modification and weight loss, anti-inflammatory medications, steroid injections, the use of a cane and physical therapy to strengthen the muscles around your hip.
For severe hip arthritis that has failed nonsurgical treatment, total hip replacement is an option. This surgery resurfaces the cup and replaces the ball of the ball and socket joint. This eliminates the arthritis and allows painless motion of the hip joint and improved mobility.
Hip replacement can be performed with several techniques. Direct anterior approach for hip replacement is a modern procedure to improve component position using live x-ray and speed early recovery by limiting muscle damage.