Osteoarthritis, which is a degenerative joint disease, is one of the most common causes of chronic hip pain. It is caused by wearing away of the joint cartilage resulting in friction between the ends of bone making movement very painful. Other causes of chronic hip pain include bursitis, which is the inflammation of fluid-filled sacs within the joint, trauma, infection, or lack of blood supply to the joint.
The first line of treatment for chronic hip pain is conservative or non-surgical treatments. If these methods fail, surgery to repair or replace damaged structures within the joint should be considered.
Here are some treatment options for chronic hip pain:
- Pain medications: Over-the-counter or prescription pain medications can be used to effectively treat chronic hip pain. These medications may have anti-inflammatory properties as well as prevent nerve irritation.
- Hip injections: Steroid injections, which lower inflammation and reduce stiffness in the joint, and hyaluronic acid injections, which lubricate and allow smooth movement of the bones within the joint, may be used to treat hip pain. The effect of these injections usually wears off within 6 to 12 months at which point they may have to be repeated. Platelet rich plasma injection, which is an innovative new type of treatment, tends to have long lasting effects. The platelet-rich plasma is derived from the patient’s own blood and contains many growth factors which stimulate healing of injured tissue.
- Physical therapy: Performing exercises to strengthen the muscles supporting the hip joint and stretches to improve range of motion is an effective long-term strategy to improve hip joint function and relieve hip pain.
- Hip arthroscopy: Loose bony fragments or torn ligaments and tendons within the joint may be removed or repaired using hip arthroscopy which involves the use of specialized slim instruments inserted through small incisions the size of a key hole.
- Joint replacement: When all conservative treatments options fail to provide relief, joint replacement should be considered. Joint replacement may be partial or complete. Due to significant advances in joint replacement surgery, the procedure can be performed in an outpatient setting and patients may be allowed to return home after an overnight stay.
While a degenerative hip condition cannot be completely cured, there are several treatment options available to effectively manage chronic hip pain. Contact your doctor or an orthopedic physician to find an option that would be best suited to your condition.
The NewportCare Medical Group is an outcome driven practice that offers personalized, high quality care to each patient. Book an appointment with us today.