As with every body part, the hips are vulnerable to damage with age and wear and tear, which can result in pain to the area. This can be caused by cartilage wearing down, and the overuse of the muscles and tendons in the hip. Hip pain is a common problem with a multitude of causes, and can be caused by other parts of the body such as the knees or lower back.
Common causes of hip pain:
Trochanteric Bursitis/Gluteal tendon dysfunction
Trochanteric Bursitis occurs when one or more of the fluid-filled, cushioning sacs (bursa) over the prominent bone on the side of your hip (femur) becomes irritated and causes pain and inflammation. It is more common in middle-aged and elderly women than it is in men and younger people.Often trochanteric bursitis is a manifestation of damage or weakness to the gluteal tendons inserting on the side of the hip and need to be addressed as the primary underlying cause to the recurring bursitis.
Illiotibial Band Syndrome
The illiotibial band (ITB) is a tendon that begins at the pelvis and runs down the outside of the thigh and crosses through the knee to attach to the shinbone. It serves to stabilise the outside of the knee as it flexes and extends during movements like walking, running and jumping.
ITB Syndrome, also called “runner’s knee”, refers to inflammation of this tendon as it slides back and forth over its connection point at the outside of the knee. Although this movement is part of the normal range of motion for the knee and tendon, repetitive sliding and overuse of the tendon through repeated bending and straightening causes friction and irritation, leading to this condition.
Arthritis of the Hip
Arthritis is the inflammation of one or more of the joints and can impact the hip, making it challenging to move without pain. Cartilage between the bones of a normal hip allow a gliding movement and effectively absorb shock. Arthritis of the hip is characterised by the gradual disintegration of the cartilage and bone surfaces, and the resulting inflammation of the hip joint. It can result from a particular injury or gradual damage.
Arthritis of the hip most often occurs in people over the age of 50. It is more common in overweight people with a past history of hip injury. Arthritis cannot be cured, however there are many care options available to treat the symptoms and slow its progress to help reduce pain. The most common forms of arthritis to impact the hip are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. It is a degenerative condition often experienced by middle-aged people. The cartilage in the joint disintegrates over time, becoming rough and minimising the protective space between the bones. As a result, the bones may rub together which causes the joint to become painful and inflamed.When osteoarthritis affects the hip, the cartilage in the hip joint will gradually wear away and become rough, with the projective space between the bones decreasing. Bone rubbing on bone and bone spurs will often result. It is a disorder that develops slowly, with pain becoming more disabling as time progresses.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disease that often impacts multiple joints of the body, including the hip. Rheumatoid arthritis typically occurs in both hips at the same time.
This condition occurs when the immune system attacks its own tissues. The immune cells of people with this condition attack the soft tissue between the joint capsule and joint cavity of the synovial joints, which causes the area to become swollen. This form of arthritis affects 1% of the population, with women more than twice as likely to develop the condition than men.
Osteitis Pubis is a debilitating condition common in athletes and sportspeople. It affects an area of the groin called the pubic symphysis, where the two pubic bones join at the front of the pelvis. The pubic symphysis is made up of cartilage that absorbs the force generated when we move our legs.
There are muscle groups attached near this area that contract when we perform certain movements such as running and kicking, sending a pulling force through the pubic symphysis area. When this force is either repetitive or of a high intensity (or both), the pubic symphysis can become damaged and irritated.