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Causes of Hip Pain and What We Can Do About It

The hip is complex, with a design that provides a good amount of stability. It allows for good mobility and range of motion for doing a wide range of daily activities. Many powerful muscles connect to and cross by the hip joint, making it possible for us to accelerate quickly during actions like running and jumping.

The hip joint is a true ball-and-socket joint. This arrangement gives the hip a large amount of motion needed for daily activities like walking, squatting, and stair-climbing.

What Causes Hip Pain?

In an active sports population, the most common hip pain results from the “wear and tear” that occurs in joints through movement. Osteoarthritis (OA) is a degenerative disease of the articular cartilage that covers the surfaces of the ball-and-socket hip joint. When the surface of the cartilage wears away, the “bone-on-bone” friction causes pain.

No Cure, but we can slow down OA Hip Pain

There is no cure for OA, but there are ways to maintain, and in some cases, slow down the degeneration of articular cartilage. Non-surgical treatments include anti-inflammatories such as acetaminophen and glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate have been effective in managing symptoms; however, physical therapy plays a critical role in strengthening and protecting the joint.

Determining Effective Treatment for Hip Pain

Determining the most effective treatment for hip pain often requires an x-ray and MRI; in some cases, a simple arthroscopic procedure will allow the surgeon to see the extent of the damage while at the same time removing loose fragments that can cause pain in the joint. Another surgical procedure called osteotomy corrects the alignment of the hip to reduce pressure and pain in the joint.

Is a Replacement the Answer for solving your hip pain?

Artificial hip replacement is widely accepted as the most comprehensive solution for hip pain in patients over the age of 60. Younger patients tend to be more active and are more likely to put excessive stress on the hip. Revision surgery to artificial hips is to be avoided, as these procedures are more complicated and carry certain risks.


Meet Dr. Nathan Cafferky

As a total joint surgeon specializing in adult reconstruction, Dr. Cafferky focuses on patients with hip and knee conditions who require replacement surgery.

His fellowship training in joints and adult reconstruction at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus gave him the expertise to treat these conditions appropriately. The most common conditions he treats include hip and knee arthritis, ranging from osteoarthritis to rheumatoid arthritis to post traumatic arthritis.


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