What is at the Root of Your Hip and Knee Pain

“Oh my aching joints!”

If this sounds like you when getting out of bed each morning or even getting out of a chair, you’re not alone. This refrain becomes more prevalent as we age, although younger adults can experience joint pain too. Depending on a person’s exercise routine, or if they are runners, hip and knee pain can interfere with many of life’s activities.

Know the cause, find the right treatment

There are numerous reasons for hip and knee pain, and finding the right treatment depends on discovering the root cause. Be especially mindful of swelling, redness, and warmth at the site. If pain continues during the night, see an orthopedic physician at Santa Rosa Orthopaedics as soon as possible. To schedule and appointment call (707) 546-1922 x1.

Common causes of hip pain

The hip is the largest joint in our body and although quite durable, it is not indestructible. There is a cushion of cartilage that helps prevent friction, but overuse and age can cause a breakdown of that cushion leading to discomfort and pain.


One common cause of hip pain is Osteoarthritis, an inflammation of the joint and bone. Other types of arthritis include septic arthritis which is an infection at the joint caused by an injury, and rheumatoid arthritis, most common in older adults.


The bursa sac acts as a cushion between tissues. Overuse, repetitive motions and injury can cause the sac to become inflamed leading to bursitis and pain.


The bursa sac acts as a cushion between tissues. Overuse, repetitive motions and injury can cause the sac to become inflamed leading to bursitis and pain.


Bones become more brittle as we age and are likely to break with a fall or other trauma. These types of injuries may require surgery.

Avascular necrosis

Also known as osteonecrosis, this serious disease reduces blood circulation to the hip joint causing the bone tissue to die. This can occur after a dislocation, and should be evaluated and treated as soon as possible.


Many adults don’t realize that staying hydrated can reduce hip pain. Manage your pain by increasing water intake and limiting caffeine drinks and alcohol.

Common causes of knee pain

The knee joint is one of the most injury prone parts of our body. Knee pain can occur suddenly with a sports injury or a trauma to the knee. Pain can also develop slowly over time from arthritis, overuse, or a particular job involving bending and lifting.  Common symptoms of chronic knee issues are pain, swelling and stiffness.


The tendons are tissues which attach bones to the muscles in our knee. When these tendons become inflamed from overuse or some repetitive stress, pain is the result. The pain usually occurs in the front of the knee and becomes worse climbing stairs and walking up an incline.


Bursitis occurs when the bursa sac becomes inflamed from repeated overuse or injury to the knee.

Chondromalacia patella

Here pain develops as a result of damaged cartilage under the kneecap.

Rheumatoid arthritis

This is a chronic autoimmune inflammation causing pain and swelling of the knee which may lead to bone deterioration.

Torn ligaments

This is a common knee issue in which one of the four ligaments is torn and causes severe pain.


Painful trauma or injury to the knee.

Meniscus tear

This painful rupture occurs in the cartilage.


A tumor in the bone known as osteosarcoma or bone cancer.

Gout or arthritis

This pain is due to an increase in uric acid.

Schedule an Appointment for Hip & Knee Pain Treatment

While these may help to determine the root of your hip or knee pain, it’s important to visit your doctor for proper treatment. Contact Santa Rosa Orthopaedics at (707) 546-1922. For more information see our information on Total Joint Replacement.