Feeling Great: What you need to know about hip pain

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Running, jumping, or even just to take a walk, you need your hip for it all. As we get older our joints get older too. Many times aging joints can lead to hip pain or in some cases even a hip replacement.

The most common cause of hip pain is arthritis. "With hip pain one of the classic symptoms is groin pain. If you feel persistent chronic pain in your groin, buttocks, or thigh, and it's just not going away that could be an indication that you have osteoarthritis," explains Tony Stewart, a R.N. with the Piedmont Joint Replacement Center.

The majority of the center's patients are in their 50s or older. "As you age you are going to be using your joints a lot and moving around and that could lead to deterioration of the cartilage that surrounds the ends of your bones and protects it," explains Stewart.

When doctors take an X-Ray to examine hip pain they are actually looking at the cartilage around the joint.

"When you're missing that cartilage the bone rubbing up against one another creates that really painful condition," explains Stewart.

If a patient does need a hip replacement the recovery process is longer than the actual surgery. On average it takes 3-4 days to go up and down stairs, about 8 weeks to get back on the golf course, and 8-12 weeks to go back to work.