Know if Your Hip Pain is Already an Arthritis

Arthritis is the usual cause of hip pain and mobility changes like walking slower, climb stairs less quickly, and cover less distance. 

This may vary from osteoarthritis and inflammatory diseases like psoriatic arthritis. To successfully reduce your hip pain, you must learn first what kind of arthritis you have. 

Know if Your Hip Pain is Already an Arthritis:

1. Hip Pain and Psoriatic Arthritis

Many people with psoriasis — an autoimmune disease that affects the skin — develop a form of arthritis known as psoriatic arthritis. The NIAMS reports that about one in five people with psoriasis will develop psoriatic arthritis.

The condition usually begins in the small joints several years after the onset of psoriasis. It can also affect large joints, including the hip.

Psoriatic arthritis symptoms include pain and swelling of joints, tenderness where muscles or ligaments attach to the bones, and spondylitis, or inflammation of the spinal column.

There is no test to diagnose psoriatic arthritis, so doctors usually order blood or imaging tests to rule out other conditions. They may examine you for swollen and painful joints, check your nails for any deformities (a possible sign of psoriasis), and press on your feet to check for any tenderness or pain.

2. Hip Pain and Osteoarthritis

“The most common type of arthritis is osteoarthritis, so-called wear-and-tear arthritis,” says Thomas Parker Vail, MD, chair of the department of orthopedic surgery at the University of California in San Francisco. It's called that because osteoarthritis is caused by the gradual wearing down of cartilage in a joint, which can lead to inflammation of the joint lining and the rubbing of bones against each other, according to the Arthritis Foundation.

Osteoarthritis can also result from an injury to the joint; this is sometimes referred to as traumatic arthritis. In some cases, Dr. Vail explains, inflammation may play a role in initiating or accelerating the effect of osteoarthritis.

According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), factors that increase your risk for osteoarthritis include:

Symptoms of osteoarthritis develop slowly, beginning with stiffness or soreness in one or both hip bones and eventually becoming painful enough to make it difficult to carry out or comfortably perform normal activities, such as walking or climbing stairs.

Look out for any of these osteoarthritis symptoms:

Pain in the thigh, buttocks, or groin area
Difficulty reaching your foot
Tendency to limp

Other Forms of Arthritis

“There are other conditions, like rheumatoid arthritis, in which inflammation is the underlying problem that instigates pain," Vail says. "The inflammation may be [due to] an immune system abnormality that causes the cartilage loss characteristic of this kind of joint deterioration.” He adds that this condition can be seen at its most extreme in children and young adults who have juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.

According to NIAMS, symptoms of RA include pain developing in joints symmetrically, like the same knuckle on the right hand as on the left, and swelling of the affected joints.

Source: Everyday Health
Image: Continental Hospitals

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