The hip joint is the joint that connects the torso and the lower extremities. The joint comprises the acetabulum (a socket) containing the head of the femur (thighbone). In majority of cases hip pain actually originates from the hip joint. However, the pain may be also located in the hip area but be actually of different origin, starting in different structures that surround the joint.
It is estimated that the leading cause of hip pain is actually trauma to the hip area. In such case the entire area is inflamed, edematous, the skin may be red and later covered in bruises and range of motions of the joint reduced.
Hip Pain: the Underlying Causes
The hip pain is specific because it does not contain too much fluid inside. So in case of any injury or trauma to the hip, the joint soon gets filled with fluid or blood. The presence of the two subsequently leads to stretching of the capsule of the join and initiates pain.
The pain can be also induced by wear of different joint structures. For instance, both the femoral head and acetabulum are covered with a layer of cartilage while the socket area additionally contains tough cartilage called the labrum. Tear or wear of any of the mentioned cartilages leaves the bones naked and their friction initiates the pain.
Furthermore, any injury to the muscles surrounding the hip joint may be accompanied by pain (among other symptoms and signs).
Even inflammation of large bursas, fluid-filled sacs located in the hip area in charge with easier gliding of the muscles and tendons over bony projections, may be a source of hip pain.
Sometimes inflammation of the sciatic nerve can be in a form of hip pain. In such case the inflammation is actually located at the level of L1 and L2 nerve roots but the pain is felt in the hip area.
Finally, there is several more causes of hip pain. Osteoporosis of the hip and benign or malignant tumors of the hip bone are only some of them.
Hip Pain Treatment
People suffering from hip pain for a long period of time are due to report the problem as soon as possible. With certain tests and exams the doctor will identify the underlying cause and suggest treatment. Fortunately, many cases of hip pain are completely curable. If this is not possible, there are ways for the one to bring the pain and all the accompanying symptoms under control and continue with his/her life.