Tag Archives: Hip fracture

Straight, No Chaser: Hip Pain


The hip bone’s connected to the … If you remember this song, you’re dating yourself. You’re also anatomically incorrect. There is no hip bone. The hip is a joint connecting the thigh bone (the femur) with the pelvic bone.
Today, we are going to discuss hip pain. This is going to be quite straightforward. My goal is to give you a simple approach to think about when confronted by hip pain or injury.
First, let’s appreciate how stable the hip is compared to many other joints. The head of the femur fits into the joint like a ball would fit into a cup that closes in around it. This promotes a huge amount of stability, meaning you have to go out of your way to hurt that area. Of course we do, particularly during trauma or excessive sporting activities (and of course, it’s subject to the wear and tear that occurs with time).
Here are the various ways we tend to hurt the area involving and surrounding the hip.

  • Strains: Commonly known as a pulled muscle, a strain involves the stretching and tearing of muscles in an area.
  • Dislocations: These injuries involve displacement of the ends of bones from the joints in which they normally meet.
  • Fractures: These are disruptions (e.g., breaks) in your bones.
  • Bursitis: This is inflammation of the fluid-filled sacs that normally cushion joints (as well as muscles and tendons).
  • Osteoarthritis (aka degenerative joint disease) usually results in a loss of the range of motion and produces pain.
  • Osteoporosis is a weakening of the bones that leads to breaks.

Pain in the hip doesn’t always originate from the hip. It can start from the buttocks or knees and refer to the hip through nerves. Your physician will evaluate these areas for abnormalities. Treatment is pretty straightforward and involves rest and pain medications. In more advanced cases, you may need physical therapy and hip replacement therapy. These options are discussed at www.sterlingmedicaladvice.com.
The important thing for you to take from this is what you need to do in order to prevent hip pain and how you can help yourself when you have pain.

  • Rest: The mantra “feel the pain (or burn)” doesn’t apply to your joints. Those are warning signs of potentially imminent injury. If you’re feeling pain, rest. Don’t sleep on that side and avoid placing pressure on it. When you’re in pain, avoid overuse of the hip, including routine activities such as bending.
  • Ice/heat: Use heat to loosen your muscles, especially when exercising. This will make injury less likely. Ice serves to dull any inflammation you’ve experienced.
  • Pain meds: Know the proper doses and usage of over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen (e.g., Tylenol), ibuprofen (e.g., Motrin) and naproxen sodium (e.g., Advil).
  • Exercise: It’s usually about the weight. The more weight you’re carrying, the more stress you’re placing on the hips. Unless already injured, exercise will always produce benefits.

Finally, when you can’t move your leg, can’t bear weight, note a deformity (including rapid, massive swelling) or are in excruciating pain, that’s the time to get to the emergency room as soon as possible. When these things occur, don’t delay. Significant injuries can have devastating consequences.
Feel free to contact your SMA expert consultant with any questions you have on this topic.
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Quick Tips on Elderly Falls


This post is about elderly falls

elderly falls
Are all of you DIYers (do it yourself) ready for a weekend project to help a loved one? Here you go. First, let’s start with some not so fun facts.

  • Every year, one of every three adults older than 65 has a fall.
  • Falls are the #1 cause of injury death in senior citizens.
  • Falls are the #1 cause of nonfatal injuries and trauma hospitalizations.
  • Typical injuries include lacerations, hip fractures and head injuries (including intracranial bleeds). These injuries occur in approximately 20-30% of falls.

Quick Tips

elderly falls prevention

How can older adults prevent falls and the complications of falls? Here are six Quick Tips I hope you’ll share with your loved ones.

  • Start by doing some home improvements to accommodate the shortcomings of your elderly relatives. Consider railings and grab bars – near the bed, on the stairways, shower, tub and toilet. Improve lighting. Clear out and widen walking paths. Consider using a walker.
  • Exercise regularly. It keeps the brain sharp and the leg muscles strong. Inactivity promotes bad outcomes when activity is attempted. Have their doctors arrange for home health care and physical therapy if indicated.
  • Have your loved one and your family review medications with their physician. You need to know which medications and drug interactions can promote loss of balance, dizziness, drowsiness, and/or mental status changes, all of which can lead to falls.
  • Keep those eyes checked. This should be happening at least once a year. Be diligent in changing prescriptions as needed. Could you imagine being a little confused and not being able to see? What would you expect to happen?
  • Pay attention to diet. Nutritional needs are even greater in those with health issues, which is always the case in the elderly. Supplement Vitamin D and calcium for bone strength.
  • Of course, get screened and, if needed, treated for osteoporosis.

The key is to pay attention. You don’t have to let your loved ones wither into oblivion. Simple quick fixes and some love and attention can go a long way to preventing falls and the injuries that accompany them. My mother fell and suffered a massive intracranial bleed with herniation 2 years ago. I’m pleased to note that she’s made a full recovery, and these tips I’ve offered you make a world of difference. Good luck.

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