Unfortunately, arthritis is often one of the painful conditions that come with age. The older we get, the more wear and tear our bodies carry, especially in our joints. Some severe cases of arthritis are the result of underlying medical conditions while most are simply related to age and the natural deterioration of our bodies’ cartilage. This age-related deterioration is the most common form of arthritis and is generally referred to as osteoarthritis.
10 million people are reportedly diagnosed with osteoarthritis in the US. This most common form of arthritis can affect fingers, thumbs, wrists, knees, hips, and even the spine. Osteoarthritis occurs when inflammation in the joint causes the body to break down the cartilage that helps reduce friction in the joint.
The hip is one area of the body regularly affected by osteoarthritis. While the exact causes of arthritis in the hip are unknown, doctors agree that joint injury, increasing age, and/or obesity are all factors that contribute to damaging inflammation in the hip joint. Maintaining a healthy weight and getting regular exercise are the best ways to preserve the health of your hips well into your older years.
Osteoarthritis of the hip is sometimes difficult to recognize. This is because the pain associated with the harmful inflammation is often times felt in different locations, including the groin, buttocks, thigh, or even the knee. More common than this, however, is simple joint stiffness or difficulty walking. Any prolonged or chronic pain should be discussed with your doctor.
Treatment options for osteoarthritis of the hip range from simple rest all the way to reconstructive surgery. The main goal of treating osteoarthritis is to improve joint function and restore mobility in the joint. Furthermore, most treatment methods will involve controlling the pain and trying to decrease the strain and stress on the affected joint.
While not entirely avoidable or preventable, maintaining a healthy weight and getting regular exercise are the best ways to preserve the health of your hips well into your older years.
Multiple clinical trials concerning osteoarthritis are currently underway in Utah, including in Draper and Sandy, which is near Salt Lake City. Click here to learn more about a study evaluating pain medication for osteoarthritis of the knee, and here for a study concerning osteoarthritis of the hip.