Hip Injury

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What is the common hip injury?

Hip injuries are common in people of all ages. Youngsters who participate in sports run a significant risk of hip injuries. The elderly are prone to hip injuries due to falls because bone density decreases with age and joints become less mobile. 

 

Hip fracture

A hip fracture is a break in the upper portion of the femur (thighbone). A hip fracture in younger adults is typically the result of high-energy trauma, such as a falling from a height or a car accident. Stress fractures (fractures from repeated impact) may also occur in the femoral neck. These fractures are often seen in long-distance runners. Hip fractures are also commonly found in elderly patients with weakened bones (osteoporosis), as even a simple twisting or tripping may lead to a fracture. 

 

Hip fractures are very painful and the pain is usually located in the groin. After a hip fracture, you will not be able to stand or bear weight. If you suspect a hip fracture, please see your health practitioner as soon as possible and prompt surgical treatment is recommended. The surgery aims to treat the fracture and get the patient out of bed as soon as possible to help prevent medical complications.

 

Hip dislocation

A hip dislocation occurs when the head of the thighbone (femur) is forced out of its socket in the hip bone (pelvis). It typically takes a high impact to dislocate the hip, such as from car accidents and falls from heights. As a result, other injuries like broken bones often occur with dislocation. A hip dislocation is a medical emergency. Immediate treatment is necessary.

 

There are two types of dislocations: anterior and posterior.

  • A posterior dislocation occurs in most hip dislocation patients. The femur is pushed out of the hip socket backwards. 

  • Anterior dislocation. When the femur slips out of its socket forwards, the hip and the lower limb will rotate out from the body.

 

When the hip dislocates, the ligaments, muscles and other soft tissues holding the bones are usually damaged. The nerves around the hip joint may also be injured.

 

Hip labral tear

A hip labral tear is an injury to the ring of cartilage (labrum) on the outside rim of the hip joint socket. It helps to hold the top of the thighbone within the hip socket.

Symptoms of a labral tear include pain in the hip or groin with prolonged standing, sitting, walking or athletic activity. Stiffness or reduced range of motion in the hip joint is very common. Sometimes, a locking sensation may occur.

 

The most common causes of labral tears are trauma and repetitive motion on the hip joint. Injury or dislocation of the hip joint can cause a hip labral tear. Sports-related and other physical activities such as long-distance running can lead to joint wear and tear that can eventually result in a labral tear. People suffering from a hip labral tear have a higher chance of getting osteoarthritis.