Sore Sockets: When Hip Injuries Happen

Step right up, folks. Come one, come all. Prepare yourselves for something truly amazing. Behold the body’s largest ball-and-socket joint—the hip!  See how it fits together perfectly allowing for fluid movement. Watch how it helps the body run, dance, sit, bend, and more. What a spectacular act!

Let’s face it, our hips put on quite a performance every single day. They are responsible for a whole lot of movements, and we depend on them for pretty much everything we do on a regular basis. Lucky for us, they are designed to withstand the wear and tear of all this repetitive motion. As amazingly durable as hips are, though, they are not indestructible.

Usually cartilage cushions our hip against friction when the bone moves in its socket, but with constant use, as well as age, that cartilage can become worn and damaged. This, in turn, can lead to a number of hip injuries and painful conditions.

Hip PainOsteoarthritis

Among the most common causes of hip pain is the arthritic condition called osteoarthritis. This leads to inflammation of the hip joint and the break-down of that ever-so-important cartilage. Typically seen in older adults, the pain gradually increases as the condition progresses. Patients will experience a reduced range in motion and feeling of stiffness.

Greater Trochanteric Bursitis

Tiny fluid-filled sacs called bursas protect tendons and muscles, but they can become inflamed due to an over-worked and irritated hip. The result is pain and tenderness.

Piriformis Syndrome

This neuromuscular disorder occurs when the piriformis muscle near the top of the hip joint pushes against the sciatic nerve, which runs along the muscle and down the leg. The compression of the nerve causes pain and sometimes even muscle spasms.

Acetabular Labral Tears

This refers to cartilage and tissue damage in the hip socket. A labral tear means a loss of the cushion that prevents bone rubbing against bone. As a result, you may feel pain in the groin area, or a “clicking” or “catching” feeling in the socket when you try to move.

Femoro-acetabular Impingement

Your hip is called a ball-and-socket joint because the top of the thigh bone is ball-like and fits into the cup-like area of the pelvis perfectly. Normally the two move smoothly together, but if there is damage to either the ball or the socket rim, this is what’s called impingement.

These are just some of the many hip injuries that can occur. Most can be treated with conservative measures like resting, icing, and physical therapy exercises. Sometimes, though, a hip injury can be so severe that it leaves you immobilized. If this is the case, total hip replacement may become necessary.

Total Hip Replacement

Also called arthroplasty, hip replacement is a surgical procedure in which the damaged hip joint is removed and replaced with artificial parts called prostheses. This will return function and mobility as well as relieve pain.

Our hips are made to move, but when hip injuries make that movement painful, Dr. Jennifer Molner is the one to call. Let her help relieve your pain and restore your mobility. Dial (303) 805-5156, or visit Castle Pines Physical Therapy in Castle Pines, CO. Do it today, and you’ll be hula-hooping, hip-hopping and performing all kinds of amazing acts before you know it!