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The hip is the most common joint impacted by osteonecrosis (avascular necrosis), where bone tissue basically dies because of a lack of blood supply. Caused often by joint or bone injuries or abuse of alcohol and/or steroids, the most common initial symptom is pain when putting weight on the hip. It is often diagnosed through an imaging test, either x-ray, MRI or scan. As with any orthopedic condition, the severity of the problem dictates the course of treatment. In more extreme cases, surgery is needed, including osteotomy, femoral pressure relief and or total joint replacement.
If the disease is caught prior to the collapse of the joint surface of the ball part of the ball and socket joint (femoral head), then joint preserving surgeries such as osteotomy or femoral head pressure relief are effective at minimizing pain. After the joint surface collapses, usually a hip replacement is the only long term durable option available for treating osteonecrosis patients.
Physicians who treat Osteonecrosis: