Osteoarthritis, also called degenerative joint disease, is the most common form of arthritis. It occurs most often in the elderly. This disease affects the tissue covering the ends of bones in a joint called cartilage. In osteoarthritis, the cartilage becomes damaged and worn out, causing pain, swelling, stiffness and restricted movement in the affected joint. Although osteoarthritis may affect various joints including the hips, knees, hands, and spine, the hip joint is most commonly affected. Rarely, the disease may affect the shoulders, wrists, and feet.
Hip pain, one of the common complaints, may not always be felt precisely over the hip joint rather in and around the hip joint. The cause for pain is multifactorial and the exact position of your hip pain suggests the probable cause or underlying condition causing it.
Pain felt inside the hip joint or your groin area is more likely to be because of the problems within the hip joint. Likewise, the pain felt on the outer side of your hip, upper thigh or buttocks may be a result of the problems of the muscles, ligaments, tendons and soft tissues surrounding the hip joint. However, certain disease conditions affecting other parts of your body such as lower back or knees also cause hip pain.
A hip fracture is a break that occurs near the hip in the upper part of the femur or thighbone. The thighbone has two bony processes on the upper part - the greater and lesser trochanters. The lesser trochanter projects from the base of the femoral neck on the back of the thighbone. Hip fractures can occur either due to a break in the femoral neck, in the area between the greater and lesser trochanter or below the lesser trochanter.
Femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) is a condition characterized by excessive friction in the hip joint from the presence of bony irregularities. These cause pain and decreased range of hip motion.
The femoral head and acetabulum rub against each other, causing damage and pain to the hip joint. The damage can occur to the articular cartilage (the smooth white surface of the ball or socket) or the labral tissue (the lining of the edge of the socket). The articular cartilage or labral tissue can fray or tear after repeated friction. Over time, more cartilage and labrum are lost until eventually the femur and acetabulum impact on one other. Bone-on-bone friction is commonly referred to as osteoarthritis.
A pelvic fracture is a condition that occurs due to the breakage of the pelvic bone. It may cause damage to the internal organs, nerves and blood vessels associated with the pelvic region.
The pelvic bone is a circular arrangement of bones connected with the help of strong ligaments to the lowermost region of the spine called the sacrum. It is composed of three bones that are fused together, namely the ilium, ischium, and pubis. The sides of the pelvis form cup-shaped sockets known as the acetabulum.
Stress fractures of the hip are a break in the upper part of the thigh bone (femur) that fits into the socket of the hip joint. It can occur in any part of the hip, however, it mostly occurs just below the ball of the ball-and-socket hip joint called the femoral neck.
Stress fractures of the hip are more common in distance runners (high-mileage runners), ballet dancers or high impact athletes of any age.