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Consequences of Reduced Blood Flow to the Hip

October 04, 2017

Orthopedic surgeons might recommend anterior or posterior hip replacement surgery for a number of reasons. If your hip joint does not have enough blood flow, the bone tissue can start to die. Once this happens, if it gets severe enough, you might require a hip replacement in order to restore the range of motion to your hip. Knowing more about why this happens, the symptoms and what can be done to treat it helps you to be a more informed patient.

What Are the Causes of Reduced Blood Flow to the Hip?

A number of factors might contribute to this happening to the bones that make up your hip joint. It is important to know what the causes and risk factors are. When the bone tissue death starts to occur, small breaks can start to occur. Over time, this can result in the total bone collapsing completely. An interruption in blood flow is responsible for this issue. When the bones do not have adequate blood flow, they are not getting the nutrients they need to survive and thrive, resulting in the tissue eventually dying. In about 25 percent of cases, the cause of this condition is not known. In cases where the cause is identified, they include:

-The blood vessels have fatty deposits

-Bone or joint trauma

-Certain diseases that can result in the bones getting reduced blood flow

The following are risk factors:

-Excessive alcohol use

-Using bisphosphonate medications long-term

-Trauma

-Using high doses of steroids 

Exploring the Symptoms of Bone Death in Your Hip

The usual symptom is pain and it tends to develop over time. This pain might occur anywhere around the hip joint, including in the buttock, thigh or groin areas. In many cases, one of your hips is affected, but there are times when both are affected at the same time. In the early stages of this condition, you might not have any symptoms. 

How is This Problem Treated?

The amount of bone damage that is present when you are diagnosed will ultimately determine the course of treatment. The following are treatments your doctor might recommend:

-Medications, such as cholesterol-lowering medications, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, osteoporosis drugs or blood thinning medications

-Rest and gentle exercise

-Electrical stimulation

-Core decompression

-Bone reshaping surgery

-Using a graft for a bone transplant

-Regenerative medicine in the early stages

-Joint replacement surgery 

You can see that reduced blood flow to your hip joint can be a very serious condition. If you are at risk for this, you want to understand the basics. If you would like to request a consultation with one of the experts at the Orthopedic & Sports Institute, please call (920) 560-1000 or request an appointment online.