A simple thing like walking can extend independent living. It has been stressed over and over again that walking can help reduce weight without stringent diets or over-zealous exercise routines, but walking is being shown in recent studies to reduce the risk of falling and of fracturing hips.Read More >
The hip joint is one of the largest joints in the body. This ball and socket joint is responsible for bearing the body’s weight during activities like standing, walking and running.
Washington University Orthopedics reports that arthritis is one of the most common causes of pain in the hip. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis to cause pain in the hip joint in women. This arthritis develops as a result of the wear and tear that the joint experiences as people age. Mild cases are treated with pain relieving medications, while more severe ones are managed with hip replacement operations.
The U.S. National Library of Medicine states that fractures of the hip are other common causes of hip pain. This is especially true for women who have passed menopause and have osteoporosis. This condition causes reduced bone density, making the bones brittle and prone to fracturing. Hip fractures are treated surgically by implanting screws and plates.
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center reports that iliotibial band tendinitis causes pain on the outside of the hip. This condition develops as a result of inflammation of the tendon that connects the muscles to the joint. Overuse of the tendon, especially in runners, and excessive stretching are common causes of its inflammation. This condition is treated by resting the joint, physiotherapy and taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) like ibuprofen.
Bursitis also causes pain in the hip in women. Bursa are fluid filled sacs, which cushion the parts of the hip that are close to the surface. They become inflamed from irritation or overuse and cause pain when the hip joint is moved. Treatment of bursitis involves the use of NSAIDS.
Inguinal hernias are other causes of hip pain in women. These usually develop in pregnant women due to the added pressure on the wall of their abdomen from the growing uterus. Hernias can be treated surgically once the woman delivers.
According to Mayo Clinic, sciatica can also cause pain in the hip. This pain arises as a result of a pinched sciatic nerve. It is usually felt in the back of the hip, though it also radiates down the leg. Sciatica is treated with NSAIDS and physiotherapy.
Written by: Marian Kim, Rust Built, Marketing Services
A hip fracture occurs when the femur (thigh bone) breaks. It is usually the result of a fall, though it can also be caused by direct blows to the hips during traumatic events like road traffic accidents. Hip fractures can also be caused by medical conditions like cancer and osteoporosis.
Regardless of the cause, symptoms of fractured hips include pain over the upper thigh or groin region which increases when the person tries to move the leg.
According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the classification of hip fractures depends on whether the thigh bone breaks at the femoral neck, the intertrochanteric region, or at the subtrochanteric level.
Femoral Neck Fractures
Fractures of the femoral neck occur in a narrow section of the thigh bone, which lies just below the head of the femur. These fractures are also referred to as intracapsular fractures, since most of them occur inside the capsule that surrounds the joint. Femoral neck fractures can damage the arteries that supply blood to the head of the femur. This can lead to a condition known as avascular necrosis, in which the round head of the femur flattens and develops irregular joint surfaces which cause arthritis.
Fractures of the femoral neck are usually treated surgically, with the surgeon attempting to fix the broken bone with screws. In older patients with displaced fractures, the orthopedic surgeon may also do a total hip replacement and replace the head of the femur and the acetabulum (hip socket) since they have a higher risk of developing arthritis due to the disruption of blood supply to the femoral head.
The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons describes intertrochanteric fractures as those which occur below the femoral neck and the lesser trochanter. The lesser trochanter is a bony prominence on the femur that serves as an attachment point for hip muscles.
Intertrochanteric fractures of the hip are treated surgically with a compression hip screw, which is fixed on the outer side of the femur. These fractures can also be fixed with an intramedullary nail that is inserted into the thigh bone.
Subtrochanteric fractures occur below the lesser trochanter. According to John Hopkins Medicine, they are less common than fractures of the femoral neck and those of the intertrochanteric region.
Subtrochanteric fractures are treated with an intramedullary nail, which is inserted into the femur. These fractures can also be treated with locking plates placed on the outside of the femur and secured with screws.
After surgery to treat hip fractures, most patients stay in the hospital for a few days before being discharged. They are usually sent home with pain killers and medications to thin their blood and prevent clots. Rehabilitation is begun during their hospital stay and it is determined by the type of fracture they sustained and how it was treated. Patients continue with their exercises once they are discharged, in order to regain their muscle strength and mobility.
Written by: Marian Kim, Rust Built, Marketing Services
Vitamin K is a term which covers chemically related compounds known as naphthoquinones. These compounds include phylloquinone (vitamin K 1) which is synthesized by plants, menaquinone (K2) which is synthesized by bacteria in the gut and menadione (K3) which is the manmade form that is usually given as an injection.
Though vitamin K is known for its role in helping blood clot, it is also vital for bone health. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center the human body needs vitamin K to utilize calcium for bone mineralization or the bone building process. Low K levels are therefore associated with poor bone mineralization, which results in weak bones that break easily.
The American Journal for Clinical Nutrition published a study which showed that a low intake of vitamin K from the diet was associated with a low bone mineral density (BMD) in women. This low BMD increases the risk of bones fracturing.
Several studies have proven this correlation between low K levels and bone fractures. The Harvard School of Public Health reports the findings of one study in which women who received 110 or more micrograms of vitamin K each day were found to be 30 percent less likely to develop hip fractures of the hip than those who took less. In this Framingham Heart Study, a high dietary intake of vitamin K was also shown to increase bone mineral density in women and reduce the risk of hip fractures in both men and women.
Harvard also states that eating one serving of green leafy vegetables like lettuce reduced the risk of hip fractures by 50 percent in women who ate them daily when compared to those who ate one serving each week.
According to Dr Weil, other foods that contain vitamin K include parsley, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, liver and wheat bran. Fermented soy products like natto and miso together with fermented dairy products like cheese and yogurt are other good sources of vitamin K.
Written by: Marian Kim, Rust Built, Marketing Services
Osteoporosis is a major health threat for 44 million Americans every year. 1 out of 2 women and 1 out of 8 men will get osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is known as the silent killer because ½ of the population who have low bone mass are not aware of it. Osteoporosis puts people at a much higher risk for painful bone fractures that are sometimes fatal.
Osteoporosis isn’t picky either as it has lots of bones to choose from. You have 206 bones in your body. So what do you think all these bones do? They aren’t just holding you up. Your bones are living storage materials. Think of your bones like a savings account. Bones have a storage vault: 95% of your body’s calcium is stored in your bones. You see, your body absolutely NEEDS calcium to survive. Calcium is even more important for nerve conduction, muscle contraction, and blood clotting. Calcium actually helps your heart contract because your heart is a muscle. So given a choice between keeping your heart beating or thinning your bones, your body will withdraw from your bone account, leaving your savings weak, thin and frail. And that’s how you get Osteoporosis. You survive, but may be bound to a wheelchair and/or suffer a debilitating fracture. Osteoporosis is the most common cause of hip fractures, a tragedy that I am called upon to treat regularly. Hip fractures are painful and can result in permanent loss of independence and even death. Preventative action should be taken now. Weight bearing and resistance exercises play an important role in Osteoporosis prevention and treatment. The earlier you begin to build a deposit in your bone bank, the healthier you will be.
Protect your shoulders, elbows and wrists these simple moves from PBS TV star of Functional Fitness, Suzanne Andrews.
Elbow Flexion (Bicep Curls)
Your bicep muscles are utilized every time you carry shopping or grocery bags so keep them strong.
You can do this move sitting at your desk or standing up.
- Keep your elbow stationary at your waist.
- Begin by extending your arm all the way down until your arm is straight at your side. Bend your elbow towards your chest and repeat.
Tip: If you want fast results, take 2 counts to lift the weight and 2 counts to let it down with a controlled movement. Make sure to keep your palm supinated (side up) and in line with your wrist. Don’t allow your wrist to wobble. You can start with a water bottle, and gradually add more weight when you can easily do one set of 15. Aim for 2 sets of 15.
Left to right: Suzanne Andews, Occupational Therapist/L with 4 lb weights, Glenn Edison Poyer, Certified Personal Trainer performing the seated version with 2 lb weights and Alina Z, Certified Health Coach performing the modified version with 1 lb water bottles.
Double Duty Hip and Shoulder Strengthener
- Lift your knee up so it’s in line with your hip.
- Raise your arms to shoulder level with a dumbbell as shown here.
- Lower your leg and your arms at the same time, repeat by lifting opposite knee up and arms at the same time. When this becomes easy you can add ankle weights beginning with 1 lb.
Star of PBS TV’s Functional Fitness, Suzanne Andrews, a licensed Occupational Therapy Clinician guides you with evidenced based bone building exercises in Functional Fitness with Suzanne Andrews Bone Builder DVD.