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Hip Pain & Joint Care

What Are Common Causes of Hip Pain?

Hip pain is a very common condition that can be caused by several different problems. The location of your hip pain can provide more insight as to what could be causing the pain. For example, pain on the inside of your hip or groin may be caused by problems with the hip joint. Pain on the outside of the hip, glutes, or upper thigh can be caused by muscle, tendon, ligament or soft tissue problems.

In some cases, hip pain can be caused by conditions or diseases in other parts of the body, such as the lower back. This type of pain is known as referred pain.

When Should I Go to the Doctor for Hip Pain?

Minor hip pain can be due to anatomic abnormalities that could warrant an evaluation by a physician. If you have minor hip pain you could try:

  • Resting the affected hip by avoiding bending and direct pressure on the hip
  • Applying ice or heat to prepare for stretching exercises
  • Pain relievers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen to ease the pain

Seek immediate medical attention if these methods don’t work, your hip pain is caused by an injury and is accompanied by:

  • Inability to move hip or leg
  • Inability to bear weight on the affected leg
  • A joint that appears to be deformed
  • Sudden swelling
  • Intense pain
  • Any other signs of infection, such as redness, fever or chills

How is Hip Pain Diagnosed?

In order to diagnose hip pain, your doctor will likely need to perform a physical exam. This exam can include a few questions regarding the joint pain and walking to observe the abnormal hip in motion.

Your doctor may also perform a range of fluid tests (blood samples, joint fluid, urine) and imaging tests to diagnose your condition. Imaging tests will provide a detailed look into your cartilage, bones and other tissues that may be causing your hip pain. These tests can include:

  • An MRI scan
  • A CT scan
  • X-ray
  • Ultrasounds

Common Hip Diagnosis

Some common hip diagnoses include:

  • Femoroacetabular Impingement (FAI)
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Avascular necrosis
  • Bursitis
  • Hamstring tendon injuries
  • Gluteal tendon injuries
  • Hip arthritis
  • Piriformis syndrome

How Can I Prevent Hip Pain?

While accidents can happen sometimes, you can be proactive and prevent hip pain by:

  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Exercising regularly, but with proper form to maintain a healthy range of motion within the hips
  • Eating a balanced diet full of vitamin C, collagen, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant-rich foods

The world-renowned staff at Banner Health is here to help you with any hip pain or problems you may encounter.

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