Orthotics

The Hip Bone’s Connected to the Thigh Bone…

Arthritis in the hip (and other parts of the body)

The hip joint is a marvellous feat of engineering and is in fact, one of the strongest and most complex joints in the human body, enabling a range of movements, including the most basic of them all –  walking.

With the complexity of the hip, there is also much that can go wrong.  To understand why, we need to know a little bit about the anatomy of the hip.   A ball and socket joint connects the hip bone to the thigh bone.  A thin, smooth, cushioning cartilage, known as articular cartilage, covers the moving surfaces inside the joint.  This serves as a shock absorber and lubrication for the bones.

Cartilage is subject to wear and tear.  If the stress on the joint is too high, articular cartilage degenerates and is worn away, leaving the bones to rub against each other, causing pain, swelling, stiffness, muscle weakness, and progressive loss of mobility.   The condition –  known as arthritis – affects a large percentage of people over the age of 50.

In advanced arthritis, the articular cartilage of the hip is completely worn away and the bones of the hip come into direct contact.  This condition, known as osteoarthritis, is a severe inflammation of the joints accompanied by chronic pain.  Another common type of arthritis that can affect the hip is rheumatoid arthritis.  This is caused by a dysfunction of the immune system.  Abnormal antibodies are produced that get deposited in the lining tissue of the joints, causing chronic inflammation and slow destruction of cartilage.  All joints may be affected by rheumatoid arthritis and both sides of the body are affected equally.

The hip joint is a ‘ball and socket’ joint that allows movement between the thigh bone (femur), and the hip bone (pelvis)

Whatever the type of arthritis, some cases can be successfully managed by conservative means such as:

– Medication
– Physiotherapy
– Weight Control
– Modification of leisure/sporting activities

Therapies at the Surrey Pain & Wellness Clinic that may be of interest for people with rheumatoid or osteoarthritis include:

Chiropractic care to help structurally realign the joint to reduce stress and slow down the damaging process.

Laser pain therapy to manage/eliminate cycles of pain and significantly reduce inflammation in the joint.  Laser therapy is completely safe for long term use in managing such severe, chronic conditions (and provides better results and longer term results than pain killers)

Customized foot orthotics can also prove valuable and are complementary to the above therapies in terms of pain relief, supporting alignment and function and therefore contributing to stability and functional motions such as walking and sports.

Managing arthritic pain can help you resume gentle activities and leisure pastimes, allowing patients at Surrey Pain & Wellness to become stronger and more mobile and an overall feeling of improved health and well being.