Hip biomechanics during stair ascent and descent in people with and without hip osteoarthritisMichelle Hall Tim V. Wrigley Crystal O. Kean Ben R. Metcalf Kim L. Bennell
Hip osteoarthritis (OA) is often associated with pain and impaired function. Understanding biomechanical alterations in patients with hip OA during challenging activities such as stair use is important to inform treatments. The aim of this study was to determine whether kinematics and kinetics during stair ambulation differed between people with hip OA and healthy controls. Fifteen participants with symptomatic and radiographic hip OA and 15 asymptomatic healthy controls underwent 3‐D motion analysis during stair ascent and descent. Trunk, pelvis, and hip kinematics as well as hip kinetics were evaluated. Analyses were performed unadjusted and adjusted for speed and leg length. In both the unadjusted and adjusted analyses, participants with hip OA ascended stairs with less hip range of motion in all three planes and a lower peak external rotation moment compared to controls. In the unadjusted analysis, hip OA participants descended stairs with greater ipsilateral trunk lean, less sagittal plane range of motion, lower peak extension moment, lower peak external rotation moment, and greater hip adduction moment impulse compared to controls. In the adjusted results, peak internal rotation moment and hip adduction moment impulse were greater in hip OA participants compared to controls. Findings show that individuals with hip OA display limited range of hip joint movement, particularly during stair ascent, and overall indicate the use of strategies (e.g., trunk lean; lower peak external rotation moment; higher adduction moment impulse) that implicate altered hip abductor function. Future research is required to further understand the implications of these findings on hip OA.