There are several causes of hip pain
A fall, repetitive strain, or direct trauma can all cause hip pain. Sometimes the pain comes and goes for no obvious reason at all. Often patients say the pain will come and go for years. Eventually, the pain stops going away.
Hip pain is a signal to your brain that something may not be working. If the pain persists or comes and goes, it would be a good idea to schedule an appointment to find out why.
Hip pain has ruined many runners and dancers careers.
Hip pain can stop an athlete’s ability to perform at a high level. It can cause limping, balance issues, and decreased mobility.
The hip is a ball and socket joint in the pelvis. It is made of several muscles, ligaments, tendons, cartilage (labrum), and joints. Hip pain can be coming from any one of these structures.
We categorize hip pain into three groups:
1) Posterior Hip Pain
This means pain that is more in the glute region. The pain could be coming from muscle or a spinal injury. ‘Piriformis syndrome’, sacroiliac joint pain, and even lumbar disc pain can refer to the posterior hip.
2) Lateral Hip Pain
Lateral hip pain is very common in both athletes and seniors. This pain presentation is more classically thought of as greater trochanteric pain syndrome. There could be a gluteal tendinopathy or a gluteal tear causing the pain.
At one point ‘hip bursitis’ was a very common diagnosis. Cortisone shots were prescribed, and would occasionally help temporarily. Lateral hip pain could be referred pain from the lower back, but it could also be from a muscular injury.
3) Anterior Hip Pain
Anterior hip pain is common in both athletic and senior populations. Labral tears often present with anterior hip pain. Femoral acetabular impingement, hip flexor tendinopathy and groin strains are also very common. In an older population, anterior hip pain may be due to an arthritic hip.
There are many strategies we use to treat hip pain
Depending on the type of hip pain, you can expect to achieve excellent results. Addressing a problem sooner rather than later can result in a speedier recovery. If left untreated, it becomes more difficult and can take a longer time to fully recover.
Although uncommon, surgical referral is sometimes required for resolution of hip pain. If left too long, an arthritic hip can become severe, or a small labral tear can worsen. Chiropractic care may be helpful. But sometimes surgical intervention is necessary for a full recovery.
This is why it is important to not ignore unremitting, or re-occurring hip pain. Don’t let it go and hope it will ‘go away on its own’ (hint: it won't).