The hip is the point at which the pelvis meets the thigh bone and is one of the largest weight-bearing joints in the body. The hip is composed of two components; the femoral head and the acetabulum. The femoral head is a ball-shaped piece of bone that is found at the top of the thigh bone. The acetabulum is the socket in the pelvis that the femoral head fits into, it is lined with synovium (a thin membrane) which aids in movement of the joint.


Patients with arthritis of the hip experience pain, stiffness and swelling in the affected area. A loss of cartilage in the joint eventually leads to bone rubbing on bone which destroys the hip joint. Pain is typically felt in the groin or buttocks and is exacerbated by activities like walking and getting dressed.

Arthritis of the hip is diagnosed after an evaluation of the patient’s symptoms, a physical exam and one or more diagnostic imaging tests. While most types of arthritis are incurable, today's treatment options can be very effective relieving symptoms.

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Avascular Necrosis (AVN) or Osteonecrosis, is a bone condition where the bone “dies” due to a loss of circulation to a particular area of the bone tissue. In extreme cases, Avascular Necrosis can cause a segment of bone to collapse and can lead to rapidly progressing osteoarthritis.


Although the cause of Avascular necrosis is frequently unknown, it can be caused by trauma, steroid use, excessive alcohol consumption, and bleeding disorders. This condition can occur as the result of an injury if the injury interrupts the blood supply to the bone tissue. In the event that Avascular Necrosis occurs due to injury in the hip, it is typically the result of a fracture of the upper femur.

Bones in the hip or pelvis are considered fractured when there is either a crack in the bone or a completely broken bone. Typically, a fracture in the hip or pelvis is the result of blunt force trauma to the bone from an event such as a motor vehicle accident or a bad fall.


There are several different types of fractures. Some people experience a stable fracture, where there is only one break in the pelvic ring. Low energy fractures (which are usually the result of disease affecting the bone) often cause stable fractures.

Unstable fractures typically involve two or more breaks in the pelvic ring where the ends of the bones do not line up properly. This type of fracture will likely occur as the result of a high energy fracture (which typically is the result of a car accident, industrial accident or high height fall).

People with a pelvic or hip fracture will feel pain that is often aggravated by moving or walking. They can also develop swelling or bruising in the area. 

Hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure in which an orthopedic surgeon uses a small camera, called an arthroscope, to look inside the hip joint. A hip arthroscopy can be used to diagnose, repair, and/or remove damaged tissue if necessary. 


Hip arthroscopy is less common than knee or shoulder arthroscopy but is often necessary to treat conditions such as Femoroacetabular Impingement (FAI), labral tears and loose bodies in the joint. 

Complications from a hip arthroscopy are rare. Some individuals may experience numbness, which is due to surrounding nerves being affected, but it is generally temporary. Crutches or walking assistance is often needed for a short time after the surgery and physical therapy is usually necessary for a full recovery.

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