Symptoms Of Hip Joint/Bone Infection: Its Causes And Treatment

Infection of the hip joint can be a very painful and agonizing condition. It can trigger septic arthritis. The condition is characterized by pain and stiffness of the joint, reduced range of movement and difficulty while walking.

Quick investigation and immediate treatment is very essential to manage the infection and prevent excessive hip joint damage.

To find out exactly which bacterium is causing the infection, the doctor will ask you to get the synovial fluid analyzed. Bacterial infection alters the color, volume, consistency, and make-up of the synovial fluid. Tests will be done to conclude what organism is causing the joint infection.

Blood tests also need to be done to find out what bacteria are present in the bloodstream. X rays help assess whether there is any damage to the joint.

Infection of a joint can result in septic arthritis, an extremely painful condition. Bacteria, and occasionally fungi, may spread from an infected area in your body to the hip joint, triggering infection there. In septic arthritis of the hip joint or the hip bone, bacteria infiltrate the joint and impair it, causing excessive pain, inflammation and swelling.

Infection In Hip Joint Symptoms

Symptoms of infection of the hip joint include:

  • Agonizing pain in the joint, especially on motion.
  • Fever.
  • Swelling and inflammation of the hip joint.
  • Warmth in the area of the affected joint.

Causes Of Infection In Hip Joint

When infection elsewhere in the body, such as, respiratory system or urinary tract, spreads via the bloodstream to the hip joint; infection occurs there as well. Furthermore, a puncture wound, surgery or drug injection may allow bacteria in to the joint space.

The lining of the hip joint has little to shield itself from infection. Once the bacteria gain entry in to the synovium (lining of the joint), they damage and destroy the cartilage.

Various strains of bacteria cause hip arthritis. The commonest is Staphylococcus aureus. In young, sexually active people, gonorrhea is a potent cause of joint infection and arthritis.

Viruses too attack joints; however, the condition resolves on its own and results in little joint damage. Rarely, hip joint infection occurs due to fungus.

Hip Bone/Joint Infection Treatment

  • Antibiotics: after the physician has determined the exact bacteria causing the infection, antibiotics are prescribed to target the specific bacterium. Antibiotics are given intravenously initially and later, oral antibiotics are prescribed. Characteristically, treatment lasts about 2 to 6 weeks.
  • Joint drainage: occasionally, some doctors will advise draining the infected synovial fluid from the joint; accordingly, the bacteria will get eliminated from the joint and pressure within the joint gets reduced. Hip joints, which are rather difficult to access, might need open surgery for fluid drainage.
  • Once the infection is under control, your doctor will advise physical therapy. Motion will prevent the joint from becoming stiffness, enhance joint mobility and make the muscles strong. Physiotherapy also promotes blood flow and helps you in the process of healing.
  • Engage in low impact exercises such as waling, swimming, etc.
  • Massaging will also help in managing stiffness and pain successfully.

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