Bones Home > Avascular Necrosis Symptoms

Common signs and symptoms of avascular necrosis include joint pain, limited range of motion, and osteoarthritis. However, the specific symptoms a person develops can vary based on severity, whether the bone is a weight-bearing one, and other factors. The time between when symptoms first develop and when joint function is lost will also vary -- it can be a few months to a few years.

An Overview of Avascular Necrosis Symptoms

Avascular necrosis symptoms vary based on the location and severity of the disease, and whether the bone is a weight-bearing one.
In the early stages of the disease, patients may not have any signs or symptoms. As the disease progresses however, symptoms of avascular necrosis can include:

Pain and Limited Range of Motion

When avascular necrosis progresses, most people experience joint pain -- at first, only when putting weight on the affected joint, and then even when resting. Pain usually develops gradually and may be mild or severe.
If avascular necrosis progresses and the bone and surrounding joint surface collapse, pain may develop or increase dramatically. The pain may be severe enough to limit a person's range of motion in the affected joint. In some cases, particularly those involving the hip, disabling osteoarthritis may develop.
The period of time between the first avascular necrosis symptoms and loss of joint function is different for each patient, ranging from several months to more than a year.

Final Thoughts

These possible symptoms are not sure signs of avascular necrosis. Other health problems can also cause these symptoms. Anyone with potential signs or symptoms of avascular necrosis should see a doctor. Only a doctor can diagnose and treat the problem.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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