Hip and Groin Pain

Hip and Groin Pain

Our hips are classified as a ball and socket joint and made up of the acetabulum which is part of our pelvis (socket) and femur which is our thigh bone (ball). It is the connection between our torso and lower limb and as such, its primary role is weight bearing and stability, although it is able to move in all directions. There are a few common injuries that we often see cause pain in and around the hip.

Hip Osteoarthritis

A common site of osteoarthritis is in our hip joint and it can be very debilitating. Osteoarthritis is the breakdown of the cartilage that protects the ends of bones in joints. This can cause joint pain and stiffness leading to trouble walking and going up and down stairs. Strengthening is the best way to treat this issue, taking pressure off the joint and delaying the need for surgery or making it unnecessary altogether! Finding the best exercises to start with and then progressing these as able is the key to reducing symptoms.

Muscle Tears (Hip Flexor and Groin/Adductor)

Two common muscles that are injured around our hips are hip flexors and the groin (also called the adductor group). Often these are injured in sports such as soccer where there is a lot of explosive movement, sprinting and changing direction. See our page on muscle tears here for more information.

Femoral Acetabulum Impingement

Impingement in the hip joint can occur when either the ball or socket part has extra bone growth (called bone spurs) around the surface. This can cause a pinching type sensation at the front of the hip when squatting or twisting such as getting out of a car/chair. Most of these injuries do not require surgery and daily life can return to normal with the right exercises and manual therapy.

Hip Bursitis/Tendinopathy

Bursa are fluid filled sacs that exist all throughout our bodies to help prevent our muscle tendons from rubbing on bone and getting damaged. Bursa themselves can become irritated and inflamed through either repetitive use or trauma (such as falling on one) which can be very painful. A common site of this is a particular bursa in our hip called the trochanteric bursa. Another source of pain in the area is called gluteal tendinopathy, which is inflammation of the glute tendons. Pain for both conditions may be felt with prolonged walking, sitting, stairs or lying on the affected side. Physiotherapy can help you to understand what is causing the irritation, reduce the inflammation and provide exercises to stop these structures from being aggravated.