Running with hip arthritis

I am age 63 recently retired, a keen runner, keep myself fit. Having never had any problems of this kind before, about 2 months ago I started having some discomfort in my hip; went to local surgery's physio, had x-ray taken and advised of mild osteo arthritis with some reduced space in right hip. Told it was moderate and could reasonably expect it to come and go albeit long-term deterioration. However, this has since deteriorated steadily and significantly to the extent that within a couple of weeks I was (and remain) unable to run without pain, and quite often walking with a limp (although I try hard not to in case that then leads to other issues). Physio gave me some exercises to do around stretching flexibility but they seem to have no impact as yet. Do I have to accept that I have to give up running or can I reasonably expect some periods of improvement. I have not tried taking ibuprofen or similar as the discomfort feels more chronic than acute... would welcome any input and hopefully some encouragement that the big hobby of my life (and source of all my friends) is still attainable!


  • YvonneH
    YvonneH Member Posts: 1,076

    Hi GrahamF,

    Welcome to the online community, it's great to meet you. You have had your hip pain investigated and now have the results and they aren't quite what you would have hoped for.

    A good thing is that you have had a full investigation and have a diagnosis and have seen physio already. Do keep up with the exercises, they are really good are strengthening the muscles that support your hip.

    Sometimes when you get a diagnosis the pain/discomfort can become more noticeable, I know when I was first diagnosed I suddenly felt the pain in more joints and it seemed more intense, maybe because it was now allowed to be there and have notice taken of it, I'm not sure. You will need to be sensible, perhaps reduce the intensity of your work out, walking rather than running, reduce the time spent in one go as it were. Listen to your body and keep active, but see how your hip feels. It might be that after a break as above you can return to running again, possibly more likely you might need to look at less impact activity, cycling perhaps.

    You might find some relief using a gel or cream anti inflammatory rather than tablets, or maybe something hot or cold to soothe the joint. It is really up to you there, to judge the balance of pain v. awareness of how your hip is at any one time.

    Here is our information about hip pain

    Do post and let us know what you decide to do and how it all goes, I'm looking forward to reading your next post.

    Take care

    Yvonne x

  • GrahamF
    GrahamF Member Posts: 3
    Yvonne... thank you for your prompt and helpful reply. I will carry on with the exercises and try using some gels / creams. I think the issue for me is not so much the diagnosis (which I suspected), but the speed of onset / deterioration- I had prepared myself for gradual worsening over a few months or even years, so to find that I went from being able to run hard and completely pain-free or an hour to finding walking painful within a couple of weeks was a shock! So there is a bit of mental effort needed to accept that I can no longer run (or ski or play squash etc).... still I am sure I will get used to the idea over time. Thanks again for your note. Best wishes Graham