Hip Tendinitis/Tendon Injury2016-10-12T12:39:54-04:00

Hip Tendinitis/Tendon Injury

hip pain orthopedic specialist Blacksburg VA

Hip tendinitis is the swelling of the tissues, or tendons, connecting muscle to the bone in the hip joint. While requiring a medical diagnosis, it typically lasts a relatively short time in its milder form, resolving within days to weeks. Tendinitis occurs when a muscle or group of muscles are overused and strain the tendon that attaches the muscles to the bone. 

Tendinitis typically feels sore in specific areas. At Sideline Orthopedics, we encourage you to be as detailed as possible in describing your hip pain so we can make an accurate diagnosis. You should be aware of the activity or activities that trigger the pain, where the pain occurs in your body, and anything that you can do to relieve the pain (such as resting).

Causes of Tendon Injury

Damage is most likely to occur from an activity that requires repeatedly lifting the leg while turning it out at the hip, as in ballet or gymnastics. Athletes in sports that require a lot of high kicking or squatting and lifting weights may also put strain on this area. People who could be at risk for hip pain from tendinitis include:

  • Ballet dancers
  • Gymnasts
  • Elderly people who have an uneven or unsteady gait
  • Long-distance runners who have been running on hills or increasing their distance too quickly

Tendinitis may also occur if you have a “snapping hip,” a condition in which a given tendon repeatedly “pops” over a bony projection in your hip, gradually wearing that tendon down.

Symptoms of Hip Tendinitis/Tendon Injury

Symptoms of hip tendon injury include pain that feels like a dull ache, as well as stiffness. The pain areas affected are usually the hip or knee, with swelling often associated in addition to stiffness. Other signs and symptoms of hip tendinitis include:

  • Gradual development of pain around the hip joint without a precipitating trauma or injury.
  • Tenderness perceived when the affected hip tendons are touched firmly.
  • Discomfort upon stretching or contracting the muscle of an affected hip tendon.
  • Hip joint stiffness noticeable in the morning and/or after rest.
  • Decrease in hip pain with activity (which may increase again after some time).

Nonsurgical Treatment of Hip Tendinitis

The hip is the largest ball-and-socket joint in your body. The tendons in the hip perform an important function by keeping strong muscles attached to the femur, or thigh bone, as your legs move in all directions.

For mild inflammation in the hip tendon, conservative treatment measures may be able to get you back on your feet quickly. It is important to the health of your hip joint that you have a period of rest after an injury. Other conservative treatment modalities include:

  • Anti-inflammatories medications prescribed by your physician or over the counter. 
  • Rest. 
  • Ice. 
  • Physical therapy to rehabilitate the muscles around the tendon to strengthen area and minimize tendon overuse.
  • Steroid injections may also be indicated.

Surgical Treatment of Hip Tendinitis

If hip tendinitis is severe, leading to the rupture of a tendon, you may need surgical repair. Also, for chronic hip overuse injuries in athletes, surgery may be indicated. Surgery is also used on occasion if the long-term conservative treatments, which usually relieve hip tendinitis, have failed to relieve pain and symptoms.

  • Partial tendon excision and debridement of tendon scars have been performed for both adductor and hamstring injuries that fail to resolve with less invasive measures.
  • These surgeries are usually reserved for high-level athletes whose conditions have failed to improve with more conservative therapies; and who safely return to activity postsurgically only after prolonged courses of physical therapy have restored their ranges of motion and strength.

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