4 Common Causes of Hip Pain

4 Common Causes of Hip Pain

Your hips are big and sturdy joints that can take on a lot of work, but when things aren’t functioning well, it can lead to pain and mobility issues. Here are four of the more common culprits behind hip pain.

We often take important joints like our hips for granted. Every day, we get out of bed and get through our days, relying on our hips to ferry us around and get us to where we need to go.

However, when something goes wrong in one or both of your hips, the impact can be hard to ignore as you struggle to get in and out of a chair, climb stairs, or simply walk around without hip pain.

Given their large workloads, it makes sense that there are many potential causes of hip pain, but Dr. Rajiv Sood and the team here at Spine & Orthopedic Center will cover four here.

1. Arthritis

About one in four adults in the United States has arthritis, and the hips are in the direct line of fire when it comes to joint pain and inflammation. Given how much you work your hips, osteoarthritis (OA) is far and away the most common type of arthritis to develop in these joints, 

With OA, protective cartilage inside the joint breaks down, which allows your thighbone to grate against the socket and leads to hip pain. This disease is progressive, so you might only feel pain after a good deal of activity at first. Over time, the discomfort can become more constant as the cartilage continues to break down, eventually making every step painful.

This is why early intervention is important — through great management, we can help you slow the progression of hip OA.

2. Hip bursitis

Your hips feature tiny, fluid-filled sacs called bursae, designed to prevent friction between the bones and soft tissues in your hip joints. If these sacs become inflamed because of overuse or injury, you can develop bursitis,

Two bursa sacs are most often involved when you have hip bursitis — one on the outside of your hip that covers your greater trochanter and one on the inside of your hip, near your groin, called the iliopsoas bursa.

In either case, should one of these sacs become inflamed, you can experience:

  • Sharp pain when you use your hip
  • Pain at night (especially if you sleep on the affected side)
  • Pain flare-ups when you climb stairs or squat
  • Pain in your hips after staying in one position for a while

As with arthritis, the earlier you address hip bursitis, the faster you can reduce the inflammation and regain pain-free movement.

3. Iliotibial band syndrome

Another common road to hip pain is strains in the supportive tissues in your hips. An example is iliotibial band syndrome, which affects a tendon that stretches from the outside of your pelvis down to your knee. If this tissue is tight or strained, it can lead to pain in the front of your hip and knee pain. You might also hear a popping sound when you move around, which is the band snapping across the outside of your pelvic bone.

4. Hip dysplasia

This is a condition in which the head of your femur doesn’t fit properly inside the hip socket, which is too shallow. This is a congenital issue (you’re born with it) and can lead to frequent dislocations and subsequent hip pain. Another sign of hip dysplasia is a popping sound or sensation in your hip.

If the symptoms are severe and limiting, a surgery called periacetabular osteotomy/Ganz osteotomy reconfigures and repositions your hip socket for a better fit.

There’s only so much that we can do here to help you toward a diagnosis of your hip pain. In reality, the only way to truly tell what’s behind your hip problems is to come to see us for a full evaluation.

For expert diagnosis and treatment of your hip pain, please contact our office in Jonesboro, Georgia, to schedule an appointment.