Treating Hip Osteonecrosis

How do I treat the osteonecrosis in my hip?

Blood flows throughout the entire body. Each muscle, organ and bone benefits from the nutrients within the blood stream. Whenever this blood supply is cut off, patients experience bone death or a total collapse. With hip osteonecrosis, the femur and pelvic bone suffer from this chronic hip pain condition. Patients may develop a limp or not be able to walk or stand at all. Hip osteonecrosis can be extremely painful for patients because the bones are slowly dying from a lack of nourishment. Patients can utilize at-home treatments for the chronic hip pain. Depending on the causes of osteonecrosis and other symptoms that the patient has, Houston Physicians’ Hospital recommends the following home treatment may help with hip osteonecrosis pain:

  • Keep pressure off the weak hip with crutches or a cane when walking
  • Let the hip relax between physical activity. Remember to rest
  • Take pain relief medicine with over-the-counter pharmaceuticals
  • Use heat or ice to ease chronic hip pain symptoms

Home treatments for hip osteonecrosis can help with chronic pain symptoms. The bone tissue within the hip needs to receive regular blood flow to strengthen the pelvis and femur. If the hip bones are close to collapsing or the lack of blood supply leads to bone death, patients will need immediate treatment.

What if I need further treatment for hip osteonecrosis?

After hip osteonecrosis progresses, bone death is the result if there is no form of treatment. Weak bones and excessive pressure on the hip can lead to the collapse of the femur and pelvic bone. Patients may have few options if the hip osteonecrosis grows into a chronic hip pain condition. A total hip replacement is an option that hip specialists at Houston Physicians’ Hospital often suggest. Osteonecrosis patients can benefit from a total hip replacement since an artificial hip may restore function and the normal range of motion.

During a total hip replacement, our physicians remove the dead bones or bones close to collapsing. The hip will contain an artificial joint usually made of metal of plastic. The hip replacement is a replica of the original ball and socket joint. Osteonecrosis can quickly progress in less than a year. Patients who wait to receive treatment have less options for hip osteonecrosis.

Do I have to have surgery for hip osteonecrosis?

In addition to total hip replacement surgery, physical therapy from a Houston Physicians’ Hospital can also benefit patients with osteonecrosis hip pain. Therapeutic exercises can help the blood supply return to its original stream through the body and to the hip. For example, simple stretches can enforce good posture and blood flow. Our physicians will closely monitor your osteonecrosis rehabilitation.

Houston Physicians’ Hospital provides patients with supportive guides through their treatment and recovery from osteonecrosis or total hip replacement. Surgery is usually the only option for patients with serious hip pain. The recovery includes regular physical therapy sessions, but also full use of the hip bones. Chances of a successful hip replacement surgery increases when patients follow through with a complete rehabilitation plan recommended by their Houston Physicians’ Hospital physician.