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unHappy Hips? Do you have hip arthritis?

In this blog, we will discuss what is hip Osteoarthritis (OA) and what are the possible causes and symptoms.

What is Hip Osteoarthritis?

Hip osteoarthritis is a condition that makes the joint painful and stiff. Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. Hip arthritis is usually a slowly progressive condition where the thickness and smoothness of the cartilage gradually reduces. In more advanced situations, the body lays down some extra bone in an attempt to repair the area. This can be one of the reasons why the hip range of movement becomes restricted.

How is Hip OA Diagnosed?

The chiropractor can diagnose hip OA, through a thorough consultation regarding symptoms and a physical examination. X-rays may be requested if the health professional feels it is essential to determine the stage of the joint changes.

What are the usual symptoms of hip Osteoarthritis?

  • One of the most common symptoms is stiffness: typically, people report having difficulty putting their shoes and socks on.

  • Pain is generally felt deep at the front or side of the hip.

  • Pain may also extend down the thigh, most commonly down the front of the thigh to the knee and into the front/outer side of the shin.

  • Walking may become painful, particularly with longer distances, at a faster pace, on uneven surfaces, or on hard floors such as in shopping centres.

Positions where the hip is bent up can also aggravate the pain, such as prolonged sitting, especially on a low chair or in a car or squatting to reach the ground, such as in cleaning or gardening. The hip may ache at night, and stiffness is often the worst first thing in the morning or when rising from a chair to walk.

What causes hip Osteoarthritis?

There is usually not a single cause but a combination of factors that increase the risk of developing Osteoarthritis. Age is a well-established risk factor for hip osteoarthritis, with the likelihood of developing signs of Osteoarthritis increasing with advancing age. However, it is possible for younger people also to develop Osteoarthritis if they have other strong risk factors.

How can we help?

Treatment for Hip Osteoarthritis combines various techniques to help the hip move better. This might include multiple ‘hands-on’ strategies to mobilise, stretch or move the hip joint and surrounding soft tissues. As with exercise interventions to help strengthen the surrounding muscles of the hip.


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