Symptoms of Hip Arthritis: The At-Home Guide to Understanding Your Pain

Mitchell K. Freedman, DO January 30th, 2015

Are you experiencing regular pain in your groin or thigh area? Does your hip feel stiff and sore? Does pain keep you up at night? If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, you may be experiencing some of the most common symptoms of hip arthritis.

An Overview of Hip Anatomy 

The hip is a large, powerful, weight-bearing joint and the body depends on it to function properly in order to maintain everyday activities, such as walking, climbing stairs and getting up and down from a seated position. This ball-in-socket joint is the location on either side of the body where the pelvis meets the thigh. 

In addition to the two bones that are connected in this joint, there are several other components of the hip’s anatomy that are essential to its ability to function well. First, the cartilage is the tissue that rests betweens the bones and cushions them from rubbing against one another. The synovium is the lining that covers the joint and lubricates the cartilage. Lastly, the labrum is a crescent shaped piece of cartilage that provides extra protection and support for the joint. Together, these parts allow the hip to function with a gliding motion and with low-impact.
Addressing Hip Arthritis
When the symptoms of hip arthritis start to become evident in a patient, the quality of life is diminished due to the pain that accompanies this condition. In addition to pain, loss of mobility is another compelling reason why patients with arthritis seek the help of orthopedic specialists. If you need to see a physician to talk about potential treatment options for hip arthritis, call Rothman Orthopaedic Institute today at 1-800-321-9999.
If you’re still not sure if the pain you’re experiencing is the result of arthritis in your hip, review the following list of symptoms.
Symptoms of Hip Arthritis
  • Dull, aching pain (can be in the groin, outer thigh, buttocks or even the knee)
  • Swelling and stiffness 
  • Instability and weakness
  • Pain that is worse in the morning or after sitting for a prolonged period of time
  • Pain that lessens with light activity
  • Pain and stiffness that increase with more intense activity
  • Pain that causes a limp
  • Deformity
There are many different kinds of arthritis, but they all have one thing in common: loss of cartilage. When the protective cushion within the joint degenerates, bone-on-bone interaction produces pain. Each patient’s experience with the symptoms of hip arthritis is unique, but generally, all patients with this condition complain of pain that is severe enough to keep them from the kind of lifestyle they want to lead.
Options for Treatment
Although hip pain can be truly debilitating, the good news is that early diagnosis and effective treatment can   protect the hip from even further damage and can provide successful patient outcomes, including pain reduction and improved function.
Conservative approaches include weight loss, activity modification, anti-inflammatory medication or cortisone shots. In cases where the progression of arthritis is more advanced, a surgical approach may be recommended. A total hip replacement is a surgery that removes the damaged pieces of the hip joint and replaces them with prosthetics made of metal and plastic. 
Having Surgery at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute
Patients in the Philadelphia area, southern New Jersey and throughout the Delaware Valley have the advantage of being within easy driving distance to one of the twenty Rothman Orthopaedic Institute locations throughout the region. Our replacement team is known throughout the country and around the world as being pioneers in the hip subspecialty, so you know you’re in good hands when you come to Rothman Orthopaedic Institute.
Total hip replacement is recommended for arthritic patients with severe pain and limited function. When you come to Rothman Orthopaedic Institute and meet with your hip surgeon, he or she will talk you through your available treatment options and recommend the best approach for your particular case of hip arthritis. The decision will be made based on multiple factors, including:
  • The patient’s age
  • The root cause of the arthritis
  • The severity of the symptoms of hip arthritis
  • The overall condition of the hip joint
  • The rate of progression of the arthritis 


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