Hip pain (pain arising from the hip joint) can be caused by a number of different diseases and conditions. Here we will focus on the common ones.
Typically pain originating from the hip joint is felt in the front over the groin (inguinal ligament) and increases by rotatory movements (turning the foot inside and out while lying on a bed) of the limb. Pain may also be felt in the knee joint of the same side in diseases of the hip. This type of pain is called referred pain. It is because the hip joint and knee joint share a common nerve supply.
Sometimes pain over the buttock can be confused with hip joint pain. If you have pain over the buttock then that is most commonly due to inflammation of the nerves (a condition called radiculitis).
Now let's look at the common conditions producing hip joint pain.
Osteoarthritis or at times simply called Arthritis is a common cause of hip pain. In this condition the hip joint becomes painful because it's cartilage (smooth covering of the bone ends at the place where they form joints) is eroded. This cause the bone to rub against bone producing pain. Know more about it in the Hip osteoarthritis page.
Infective arthritis is a condition which can be best described as a infection of the hip joint. This infection can come on suddenly presenting as acute arthritis. This is characterized by fever and severe pain in the hip joint. A more gradual onset results in a subacute arthritis that has milder symptoms.
Chronic infective arthritis usually occurs when there is delay in treatment of acute and subacute arthritis. The infection destroys the cartilage and bone. This can lead to permanent disability. Infective arthritis is one of the commonest cause of hip joint pain in children.
Another important cause of hip pain is Avascular necrosis of femoral head. In this condition the head of femur loses it's blood supply. This results in death of bone tissue in the head of femur. This dead bone is weak and collapses gradually. The joint now becomes irregular and painful. More on this condition, including causes and treatment options in the Avascular Necrosis of Hip page.
Fracture neck femur can also present as hip pain. This is an osteoporotic fracture. I have seen patients of fracture neck femur walking into my clinic, complaining of pain in the hip, without any history of injury! The different types of hip fractures and theirtreatment options can be seen in the Hip Fracture page.
Coxa plana or Legg-Calve-Perthes disease is a cause of hip joint pain in children. It commonly occurs between the age of 7 to 9 years. Know about the symptoms, diagnosis and treatment options at the Perthes Disease page.
Another cause of hip pain in children is Slipped femoral capital epiphysis, usually presenting between 10 to 17 years of age. In this condition the upper growing end of the femur bone gets separated from the remaining bone.
Trochanteric bursitis can also produce pain over the hip area. It results from inflammation in a bursa over the hip joint. A bursa is a sac like structure that allows the smooth movement of muscles and tendons near bone.
The hip joint is the most common joint that can dislocate within the womb! If not recognised at the time of birth it can cause disability later on in life.This condition is called Neglected congenital dislocation of hip and can present as a painful hip. More on the predisposing factors, diagnosis and treatment options in the Congenital Dislocation of Hip page.
End result of most diseases of the hip is osteoarthritis of the hip joint. The only long lasting treatment for hip osteoarthritis is hip replacement surgery. To know about the types, indications, contraindications, surgical procedure and complications of total hip replacement click here.
Now wait a minute before you go on and click the links above or below you would want to know about the relevant anatomy of the hip joint. Reading this page first will help you get a better understanding of the different conditions.
I hope the information provided was helpful. If you have any query you can ask me at the contact me page.
This page was last updated on 20th April 2011.
Causes of hip pain...
Avascular Necrosis of Hip
Congenital Dislocation of Hip
Go back from Hip Pain to Home Page