Article

Intermittent Claudication of the Hip

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Abstract

INTERMITTENT claudication has long been recognized as one of the earliest and most frequently encountered symptoms of peripheral vascular disease. It is the purpose of this report to stress the importance of this disease as a cause of localized, intermittent, hip pain.

A cramp-like pain in the calf which occurs during walking and is promptly relieved by rest is almost certain to be correctly attributed to some interference with the normal arterial circulation of the lower leg. Because of the frequent association between pain in the calf and occlusive arterial disease, the term “intermittent claudication” has become almost synonymous with this particular symptom; however, typical intermittent claudication may occur in any muscle or group of muscles if the arterial blood supply is insufficient to permit their normal active use. It most frequently involves the calf for several reasons. These muscles have a relatively large volume yet receive their blood supply through arteries of relatively small caliber. Involvement of these arteries, especially the sural and peroneal arteries, is extremely common in peripheral vascular disease The gastrocnemius and soleus muscles (triceps surae) are the chief plantar flexors of the foot at the ankle joint and are constantly used in walking. When the arterial blood supply to the triceps surae is insufficient to permit the muscle group to continue the vigorous contractions required by a normal amount of walking, running or climbing, claudication develops and is relieved only by cessation of movement.

Intermittent claudication at a level higher than the calf is not . . .


 

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