What are the various stages of Hip Osteoarthritis (OA)?

About more than 10 % of Canadians are currently living with osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis. There’s a prominent connection between osteoarthritis and aging factor.

Therefore, as the baby-boomer generation ages, the number of people with osteoarthritis in Canada is expected to surge. 

Pain and stiffness are indications for worsening disease. By the time the initial symptoms of stiffness and pain occur, changes in the joint may have already reached an advanced stage.

Osteoarthritis Treatment and outcome can depend on the joints’ effects. For the records, osteoarthritis can affect any joint in the body.

It is beneficial to have brief knowledge about your condition before you go for treatment.

How do you know you need physiotherapy for Osteoarthritis

The commonly affected areas are the knees, hips, hands, fingers, and spine. Osteoarthritis rarely affects the elbows, wrists, and ankles.

In most cases, people with osteoarthritis are middle-aged or older because the condition appears over time. There is the gradual development of cracks on the joints due to wear and tear.

However, you may not need rehabilitation [1] physiotherapy for the condition if you are below the age of 40. By contrast, at least 80 percent of people over age 55 have X-ray [2] evidence of the disorder, even if they show no prominent symptoms.

There are specific cases when people need to take the help of different physiotherapy treatments to help recover.  These situations are the most probable cause in younger adults who show osteoarthritis symptoms due to sports injuries, obesity, and other types of arthritis, which encompass various inflammatory joint conditions.

However, in this article, we would introduce to you some of the fundamental aspects of hip osteoarthritis to help you understand your symptoms well.

The specific case of Hip Osteoarthritis

First thing first, let’s walk you through what is the hip joint and how that works.

The hip joint consists of a ball-shaped end of the thigh bone (femoral head), which fits into the hip socket (acetabular socket). Generally speaking, that’s the area around your groin, thigh, buttocks, or knee.

The inner part of this ball-and-socket joint is lined with smooth cartilage to help with the flexible joint movement. If this smooth cartilage wears away, the remaining rough surfaces of the ball-and-socket grinds against each other, which causes pain.

Over time, this condition deteriorates causing permanent damage to the joint. 

Let’s know how Osteoarthritis develops in the hip joint, and when you should opt for physiotherapy.

We will also discuss different physiotherapy treatments that we include in the physiotherapy home service. 

Osteoarthritis: The PrimaryStage

The various causes of the Hip OA are the structural problems with the hip joint (hip dysplasia, femoroacetabular impingement), age, obesity, and accidental or chronic injury.
The first changes that osteoarthritis typically bring is when the cartilage that coats the ends of your bones and cushions your joints starts to thin out.

Even though cartilages don’t have nerves when the damaged cartilages rub against each other, they affect the bone underneath,  this is the initial symptom of osteoarthritis.

However, in this initial stage of the disorder, we recommend staying active while avoiding overuse of any particular joint. As a means of physiotherapy, we suggest getting exercise therapy for core stability.

Osteoarthritis: The secondary Stage

As osteoarthritis progresses, you may notice pain tends to worsen as the day goes on, rather than easing off.  Now it becomes difficult to carry the daily activities due to the wear and tear of the hip joints.

At this stage, it is very important to receive physiotherapy to help with your joints pain, stiffness and other symptoms. This will help you delay the further deterioration of the joint disease and also to get back to your normal routine with minimum pain.


At PhysioExperts, our physiotherapists are very experienced to help you with the same using the latest machines and most helpful exercises and manual therapy. We also use electrotherapy, evidenced-based manual therapy, acupuncture, etc to help you get back to your normal activities.

How Physiotherapy Relieves Arthritis Pain

Arthritis affects 4.5 million people across Canada – that’s about 1 out of every 6 people.

Essentially, arthritis is a chronic and painful condition that may begin to limit your daily activities and function. The two most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Osteoarthritis is categorized as the breakdown of cartilage at a joint. This type of arthritis happens over time and through wear and tear. On the other hand, rheumatoid arthritis is defined as an autoimmune disease. This means that the body’s own immune system is attacking the tissues at a joint or multiple joints, causing inflammation and pain.

The good news? Physiotherapy can help reduce and manage your arthritic pain. In fact, being active is one of the best things you can do to relieve your symptoms. Let’s take a closer look!

Managing Your Arthritis Through Physiotherapy

Pain is your body’s way of telling you when something is wrong. And arthritic pain is no exception. Your body is letting you know what’s going on – or at least it’s trying to in the best way it knows how.

And while an arthritis diagnosis isn’t ideal, it is manageable. Physiotherapy incorporates an array of treatment options that work together to manage your pain and potentially, eliminate it. What do these treatment techniques entail?

1. Education

When it comes to understanding your condition, education is step one. The more you know, the better equipped you are to prevent pain before it happens.

Through an assessment at PhysioExperts Physiotherapy Clinic in Kanata, your physiotherapist will help you understand what exactly is happening at your joint. They will perform various tests and measurements to determine where your limitations are and where improvements can be made.

Your physiotherapist will further prescribe exercises and provide you with the proper knowledge to help you limit the effects of your arthritis.

2. Exercise

Your prescribed exercises will include appropriate stretches and strengthening movements for your unique situation. Stretches will aim to improve your flexibility and mobility at the affected joint or joints. Further, strengthening exercises work to strengthen the muscles and tissues around the affected joint. This helps support the joint, limiting pain and helping you move better.

Your physiotherapist will gradually increase your exercise load, helping you determine how much you can handle. By doing so, they also help you avoid adding too-much-too-soon, which could potentially lead to other problems or injuries.

In some situations, exercise programs may be recommended to be performed in-clinic. This ensures you are performing each exercise correctly.

3.  Hot or Cold Therapy

Ice helps reduce pain and decrease inflammation. Heat, on the other hand, helps relax tense muscles and increases blood flow to the area. Your physiotherapist will often recommend one or the other. They may also go off of your own preference. Occasionally, they may prescribe a hot and cold bath which further helps improve circulation.

Hot or cold devices are applied for about 15-20 minutes. A cloth is placed in between the device and your skin to prevent any tissue damage. You may also choose to use hot or cold applications at home to help manage your arthritis pain.

4. Acupuncture

Acupuncture is the insertion of small needles at specific acupuncture points to stimulate the body’s natural pain-relievers. At PhysioExperts Physiotherapy Clinic, we have various physiotherapists in kanata that are trained and experienced in acupuncture. Although it’s not used for all cases, it may help reduce pain in some individuals – especially those with arthritis.

5. Manual Therapy Techniques

At each appointment, your physiotherapist will perform physiotherapy techniques. These techniques may include massage, stretches, and manipulation.

Depending on the goal of your treatment, your specific manual therapy techniques may vary. Massage techniques may be used to relax the muscles and increase circulation. Manipulation techniques and stretches may also be used to improve range of motion.

6. TENS and IFC

If you’ve ever been to physiotherapy before, you may have heard these terms before. TENS stands for transcutaneous nerve stimulation. IFC stands for interferential current. These therapies help manage and eliminate pain. Essentially, they replace the pain signals at the affected area with a new tingling sensation. This temporary reduces the pain you feel at your affected joints. This therapy is frequently used at the end of your treatment session.

Start Your Journey Toward a Pain-Free Life Today!

Arthritis is an entirely manageable condition. It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to put a halt on the activities you know and love.

If you’re facing an arthritis diagnosis, contact our physiotherapy clinic in Kanata. At PhysioExperts, we involve you in every step of the way. Our team includes various physiotherapy experts and specialities. Our goal is to get you back to your life – without pain standing in your way. Let’s start moving you toward better health. Contact us to book your next appointment today!

PhysioExperts Physiotherapy Centre is a Kanata-based clinic providing one-on-one appointments with registered physiotherapists. Our team strives to deliver the highest quality of care. As such, we take our time to fully understand your situation, so that you can make a full and effective recovery. Our facility is always clean and includes free parking for your convenience. We are open early in the morning to late evening, with on-call options on Saturdays. For more information, check out our reviews.