Hip Pain: What It Could Mean
When hip pain occurs, it can be difficult to do the simplest things like sitting down or raising your leg. While some mild pain once in a while is not serious, doctors specialising orthopaedics in Singapore say that chronic or excruciating pain can signify something more serious. Read on to find out about the various conditions where hip pain is a symptom. We have also included some brief treatment options for these conditions should you think you are afflicted with them.
Tendon and Muscle Strain
Tendon and muscle strains are some common causes of hip pain, and usually, they are not that serious. This happens when the muscles and tendons around the hip and the buttocks becomes inflamed or overworked. People may feel the pain when they do simple actions like sitting cross legged or when walking or running. It can also happen to people who lead a sedentary lifestyles and suddenly do a high intensity exercise when their bodies are not conditioned. Painkillers, physical therapy can be prescribed to alleviate the strain while some people recover just by having enough rest.
Hip Labral Tear
Hip labral tear is a condition where the cartilage ring surrounding the hip joint tears. This create pain and stiffness around your hip and also may feel a clicking sensation at the joint. The cause of it can be due to overuse or a dislocation of the joint. Athletes, such as football players, are at a higher risk of sustaining that condition. Compared to muscle strain, this condition is more serious as, apart from the limited mobility, it can lead to osteoarthritis in the future. Treatment options include painkillers, corticosteroid injections, physical therapy or surgery to repair the cartilage.
Osteoarthritis is a condition where the cartilage layer on the joints of the bones wear out. It can occur anywhere but commonly occur on the hip, knees, spine and hands. When the cartilage wears out, the bones will rub against each other, leading to pain, stiffness and the formation of bony lumps at the joints. This condition typically affects elderly people but anyone can get it. As mentioned above, someone with a cartilage tear and did not receive proper treatment can become osteoarthritic.
There are both surgery and non-surgery options for those suffering from osteoarthritis. Non-surgery options include painkillers to alleviate the pain, muscle strengtheners, and injections (hyaluronic acid or platelet-rich injections) to lubricate the joints and allow the cartilage to regenerate.
For surgical options, it depends on the severity of the condition. It can be minimally invasive using an arthroscope and other precision instruments to perform the surgery. Or it can be of larger scale, like a hip replacement surgery in Singapore, to restore mobility of the patient.
Related Article: Osteoarthritis on the Knee
Hip fractures are a common but severe injury amongst the elderly, especially those suffering from osteoporosis. They usually occur after a fall and lead to excruciating hip pain and immobility. Furthermore, when the fracture happens, one leg may appear shorter than the other. Without immediate medical treatment, the hip may get deformed and the person may lose almost all mobility as he/she may not be able to bear weight on the hip. His/her lifestyle will be greatly affected and there would be a higher risk that the injury becomes fatal.
Doctors usually need to do surgery in order to rejoin back the bones for the hip. They may use screws and other metal fixings to connect back the hip bones. When the bones are completely healed and reconnected, the screws will be removed. In more serious cases or in cases where the patient still has not recovered from the treatment, a hip replacement surgery may be done. After the surgery, proper rest, rehabilitation and nutrition is needed to regain bone and muscle strength.
Avascular necrosis on the hip is a condition where the head of the hip joint receives little to no blood supply and the bone tissue dies. It typically does not exhibit any major symptom at first but as the condition progresses, it can get painful. It starts off as a dull pain at the joint which progressively gets worse over time. Eventually, the pain can get so bad that it affects your mobility where you may not be able to bend your back or legs forward. This condition can affect anyone but it is commonly observed amongst people within the age range of 20 to 50 years.
Too little blood flow to the joints can occur because of trauma, blood vessel blockage or illnesses like diabetes and sickle cell anemia. Sometimes, the causes are unknown. And sometimes, the condition can even disappear completely without any treatment. That being said, treatment should be done before the conditions worsens to the point where the joint collapses and affects your mobility and posture.
To treat avascular necrosis, anti-inflammatory drugs and injections may be prescribed. Surgery may be done to reinforce the hip joint or to completely replace it if the joint is fractured. To get a proper diagnosis, you need to see an orthopaedic specialist.
These are some of the conditions where hip pain is a major symptom. If you think you could be having one those conditions, you can contact us for an appointment.