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What is the 'hip'?

The hip is the second largest weight bearing joint in the body, after the knee. It is a ball and socket joint formed between the pelvis and the head of the femur or thigh bone and is surrounded by ligaments that provide tremendous stability. Functionally, the hip joint enjoys a remarkably high range of motion.


Is Hip Pain common?

Hip pain is very common, however tends to occur more in the young (0 to 15 years) and older population (> 45 years of age). A study conducted by Christmas et al. (2002) reported that 14.3% of participants aged 60 years and older reported significant hip pain on most days over a six-week period.

Why is this happening?

Hip pain can be caused by a wide variety of problems; however, the precise location of the pain can provide valuable clues about the underlying cause. Problems within the hip joint itself tend to result in pain on the inside of the hip or groin. While pain that is on the outside of the hip, upper thigh or outer buttock is usually caused by problems with muscles, ligaments, tendons, and other soft tissues that surround the hip. Additionally, hip pain can be caused by other parts of the body, such as the lower back or knee. This type of pain is called referred pain.

Does physio help?

Physiotherapy works to unload the damaged tissue and begin focusing on better neuromuscular control around the hip joint. This increased neuromuscular awareness then provides the additional control around the hip to return to full function.

Common Symptoms related to the hips

  • Pain in the hip
  • Limping
  • Reduced movement in the hip joint
  • Referred pain (may be felt in the leg)
  • Muscle stiffness
  • Pain in the leg when applying weight on that leg

Common conditions/injuries we treat

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Septic arthritis
  • Osteomyelitis
  • Hip dislocation
  • Gout
  • Fractured neck of femur
  • Trochanteric bursitis
  • Iliotibial band syndrome
  • Meralgia paraesthetica
  • Avascular necrosis
  • Labral tears
  • Referred pain from lumbar spine
  • Referred pain from sacroiliac joint
  • Inguinal lymphadenopathy secondary to multiple causes
  • Inguinal hernia
  • Femoral hernia
  • Femoral artery aneurysm
  • Lipoma
  • Sebaceous cyst
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Metastatic disease such as prostate cancer or pelvic tumours
  • Renal calculus (loin to groin pain)
  • Iliopsoas abscess

Our Approach

To gain a clear picture of your unique situation, we will consider all of the following:

We use this information to diagnose your back pain and help create a personalised treatment plan and movement program.

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  1. Christmas, C, Crespo, D, Franckowiak, S, Bathon, J, Bartlett, S & Andersen, R 2002, ‘How common is hip pain among older adults? Results from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey’, The Journal of Family Practice, vol. 5, no. 4, pp. 345-348.
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