Mercy Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Kamala Littleton Discusses The Common Causes Of Hip Pain On WBAL-TV11's "Woman's Doctor"

August 5, 2013
Mercy orthopedic surgeon Dr. Kamala Littleton

Mercy orthopedic surgeon Dr. Kamala Littleton discusses hip pain on WBAL’s ‘Woman’s Doctor’

The National Center for Health Statistics reports that about 7 percent of Americans have problems with their hips, with women seeming to have hip pain more often than men. Getting the right diagnosis is important to treating the problem.

Paula Darrah is now pain-free after years of dealing with severe hip pain. It started as bursitis in her left hip.

"I didn't have some of the other pain -- I never had back pain or groin pain. I just always had pain right in the outside, which was always being treated as bursitis," Darrah said.

Then she developed arthritis in the same hip.

"It was just a constant situation that's kind of unrelenting, and you can't sleep or do anything on your feet. I'd use lots of ice," she said.

In December, Mercy orthopedic surgeon Dr. Kamala Littleton of The Orthopedic Specialty Hospital at Mercy performed a hip replacement on Darrah, whose bones were rubbing against one another, causing the pain.

Some of the most common causes of hip pain in women are arthritis, hip fractures, bursitis, hernia and gynecological and back issues. Littleton said it's up to her to figure it out.

"Some things that people have, they never will need surgery. Usually, bursitis or muscle strains or things like that really will be taken care of with therapy and rest and medications," she said.

According to Dr. Littleton, surgery is only needed in certain situations.

"Things like arthritis of the hip, as it becomes more severe and it affects people's lives and starts to limit what they do, that's when we start to talk about surgery," she said.

Dr. Littleton also stressed that patients should have an open mind when they have their hip pain checked. It's very likely that what a person thinks is causing the pain is not, meaning they'll likely have to see another specialist.

Dan Collins - Senior Director of Media Relations at Mercy Medical Center

Dan Collins, Senior Director of Media Relations

Email: Office: 410-332-9714 Cell: 410-375-7342

About Mercy

Founded in 1874, Mercy Medical Center is a university-affiliated medical facility named one of the top 100 hospitals in the U.S. by Thomson-Reuters with a national reputation for women’s health. Mercy is home to the nationally acclaimed Weinberg Center for Women’s Health and Medicine as well as the $400+ million, 20-story Mary Catherine Bunting Center. For more information visit Mercy online at, Facebook, Twitter or call 1-800-MD-MERCY.

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