Hip Pain 680x380

Hip Pain: Common Causes

Hip pain is a common complaint for many people. Although there are a variety of problems and conditions that cause hip pain, most are treatable with conservative treatment. Below are a few common causes of hip pain and how they are treated.

Hip Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis of the hip is a major cause of hip pain, especially in older adults. Symptoms that may be caused by OA of the hip include: pain around the front or side of the hip, especially when walking or standing, decreased range of motion, and hip pain in the mornings. Manual manipulation and specific targeted exercises to increase hip flexibility, strength, and endurance are key in reducing pain caused from OA.

Trochanteric Bursitis

Another common cause of hip pain is trochanteric bursitis. Trochanteric bursitis occurs when the bursa, or protective fluid sac, around the greater trochanter, which is a bony prominence on the outside of the hip, is irritated or inflamed.  Common signs of trochanteric bursitis are pain along the lateral leg while walking or running and pain when pressure is applied to this area, such as sleeping on that side. The most common cause of hip bursitis is gait abnormalities. The best way to treat or prevent this pain is targeted exercises to strengthen the hips in order to allow proper mechanics while walking and running.

Hip fractures

Hip fractures can be very painful and are most commonly caused by falls in the elderly. Early prevention is the key to avoiding falls. Hip strengthening and balance training are great preventative measures to avoid falls.  It is also important to maintain strong, healthy bones. Calcium, vitamin D and regular weight bearing exercises are keys to proper bone growth and maintaining bone health.

Referred pain from the back

Sometimes people experience hip pain that is not actually caused by the hip. Often, people with hip pain are experiencing referred pain from the back. Referred pain simply means that even though you are experiencing pain in one area, the true cause of the pain may be from a nearby body part. Referred pain is very common in the hip, due to its proximity to the back. Herniated discs, degenerative discs and stenosis of the spine and are common spinal ailments that refer pain into the hip.  Signs that hip pain may be coming from the back include pain in the back of the leg, groin, or in the gluteal region.

Physical therapists are trained to pinpoint the causes of hip pain and are equipped with the knowledge and resources to eliminate this pain. After a thorough evaluation, the physical therapists at Spine and Sport will develop a specialized plan of treatment and exercises to treat existing symptoms, and also give you knowledgeable tips to help prevent any future recurrence of hip pain.