Osteoarthritis is a common problem for many individuals after middle age. It is sometimes referred to as degenerative, or wear-and-tear, arthritis, and frequently affects the hip joint. It occurs when the cartilage that cushions the ends of bones in the hip gradually deteriorate.

In some people, genetics may be responsible for osteoarthritis of the hip, but it may also be caused by a hip injury earlier in life that affects the alignment of the hip, leading to excessive wear and tear on the joint surfaces.

The symptoms of hip osteoarthritis include:

  • Pain in the hip, groin, back or thigh
  • Aching and stiffness in the groin, buttock or thigh
  • Limping
  • Decreased flexibility and range of motion in the hip, particularly when bending or getting in and out of a chair or car
  • Crunching or popping sensation in the joint
  • Stiffness and pain when getting out of bed in the morning
  • Stiffness and pain that worsens over time

To diagnose osteoarthritis of the hip, a hip specialist at Lancaster Orthopedic Group will closely examine your hip and the range of motion in the joint. Lab tests and imaging may also be recommended to ascertain the extent of the cartilage damage and determine a possible cause for it.

There is no cure for osteoarthritis, but therapies are available to ease the symptoms, slow down the degeneration of the joint, and improve hip motion. In some cases, surgical treatment of osteoarthritis may be appropriate.