Missoula Bone and Joint and Surgery Center


The hip surgeons at Missoula Bone & Joint are experts at caring for the many conditions that can affect the hip, including osteoarthritis. Hip joint pain can be painful and frustrating, affecting your ability to do even the simplest things such as walking or standing up from a chair. To understand hip arthritis and other conditions, it’s helpful to know a little about hip anatomy.

About the Hip Joint

The hip joint is a ball and socket joint. The rounded head of the thighbone (femur) is the “ball” that fits inside the acetabulum, or the “socket” within the pelvis.

Both the ball and socket are covered in a smooth, slippery cartilage, which helps the joint move easily. An additional layer of cartilage, called the labrum, surrounds the outer part of the acetabulum. Large muscles power the hips and legs while tendons attach the muscles to the bones.

As one of the body’s largest weight-bearing joints, the hip is subject to both injury and wear and tear caused by aging. When one or more parts of the hip are damaged, movement becomes difficult.

Hip Arthritis

Osteoarthritis of the hip is by far the most common source of hip pain we see here at MBJ. As you age, the cartilage that lines the hip joint starts to wear away. When this happens, the ball and socket start rubbing together, creating pain and stiffness. Most people eventually need hip replacement surgery to relieve pain and restore mobility.

During a total hip replacement, a new socket is implanted and a metal stem is inserted into the femur. Then, the artificial components are fixed in place and the muscles and tendons are replaced against the bones. Our surgeons also perform hip revision surgery to repair an artificial hip joint that has been damaged over time due to an infection or normal wear and tear.

Hip Fractures

Hip fractures are most commonly caused by falls. One of the leading risk factors is osteoporosis, a condition that causes progressive bone loss and weakness. Osteoporosis is more common in women than men, and the incidence increases with age. At MBJ, we can evaluate and monitor your bone health at our Bone Health Clinic.

Other hip conditions we treat and procedures we perform:

  • Hip arthritis
  • Hip fracture
  • Hip dislocation
  • Hip impingement
  • Hip labral (cartilage) tears
  • Hip bursitis
  • Inflammation of the hip lining (synovitis)
  • IT band bursitis
  • Snapping hip
  • Unexplained hip pain


After hip replacement surgery, we will refer you to our physical therapy department for rehab. Your physical therapist will work closely with your doctor to ensure your recovery is on track.

If you have fallen and injured your hip, or you are experiencing any symptoms of a hip problem, including joint pain, groin pain, limited mobility, weakness, swelling, tenderness, difficulty sleeping on the hip, or pain with movement, contact MBJ for an appointment with one of our board-certified hip surgeons in Missoula. Call (406) 721-4436 or request an appointment online.

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