Arthritis of Hip Joint

Permanent damage to joint cartilage or loss of joint cartilage with exposure of underlying bone is known as arthritis.

Hip arthritis is less common in Indian population as compared to the western countries. However, the mean age of onset of hip arthritis is much lower in India than the western countries. That means, in India, the patients undergoing hip replacement are much younger.

Common causes of hip arthritis are:

  • Primary osteoarthitis of hip- rare in Indian population
  • Secondary osteoarthritis of hip- very common in Indian population
    • Post traumatic AVN (Avascular Necrosis) of femoral head
    • Alcoholic AVN of femoral head
    • Steroid induced AVN of femoral head
    • Perthes’ disease
    • Slipped femoral epiphysis
    • Hip dysplacias
    • Sickle cell disease
    • Haemophilia, Gaucher’s disease
    • Acetabular fractures
    • SLE
  • Inflammatory arthritis like rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
  • Tuberculous arthritis
  • Pyogenic arthritis

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If your hip has been damaged by arthritis from any cause, common activities such as walking or getting in and out of a chair may be painful and difficult. You may even feel uncomfortable while resting. Medication may control your pain for a short while but long term use of pain killers is not likely to do any good to your stomach. You may therefore want to consider hip replacement surgery. By replacing your diseased hip joint with an artificial joint, hip replacement surgery can relieve your pain and help you get back to enjoying normal, everyday activities.

First performed in 1960, hip replacement surgery is one of the most important surgical advances of this century. Since then, improvements in joint replacement surgical techniques and technology have greatly increased the effectiveness of this surgery. Today, more than 200,000 hip replacements are performed each year in the United States alone.

Should you undergo a hip replacement surgery?

The decision whether to have hip replacement surgery is an important decision between you, your family & your orthopaedic surgeon. While the range of age at which patients undergo hip replacement surgery is 30 to 80 nowadays, the recommendation for surgery is based on the extent of your pain, disability, and general health status, not solely on age.

You may benefit from hip replacement surgery if:

  • Hip pain limits your everyday activities such as walking, bending.
  • Hip pain continues while resting, either day or night.
  • Stiffness in a hip limits your ability to move or lift your leg.
  • You have limited pain relief from anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • You have harmful or unpleasant side effects from your pain relieving medications.
  • Other treatments such as physiotherapy don't relieve hip pain.