Hip Pain

Hip pain can occur in anyone. Below is information on the possible causes.

Hip Arthritis (OA)

This is probably the main cause for hip pain in the over 50's. Symptoms can occur in younger people, especially if they have taken part in a lot of sporting activity. It can cause hip or lower back pain and stiffness and can end up affecting everyday activities. These symptoms are caused by the wearing away of the hip joint and the tightness of the muscles to protect it. Pain and stiffness can vary depending on the stage of arthritis.

Greater Trochanteric Bursitis

This can be characterised by pain over the outside part (greater trochanter) of the hip. Here lies a fluid filled sac (a bursa), which protects the tendon from rubbing on the bone underneath it. Sometimes this bursa can become inflamed, resulting in pain. The pain is often worse when pressure is applied or from movement such as walking. The most common symptom is difficulty lying on the problematic side in bed. Treatment involves massage techniques to the surrounding muscles and mobilisation of the hips and pelvis. Strengthening exercises help to prevent reoccurrence once the problem has resolved.


Piriformis Syndrome

The piriformis muscle is located in the back of the hip that lies over the sciatic nerve, that runs down the back of the buttock and leg. If this becomes tight or weak it can compress the sciatic nerve causing extreme leg pain, pins and needles or numbness. Treatment involves soft tissue work to the piriformis, and exercises to strengthen it. It is very important that the sciatic nerve is being compressed by the piriformis, not a disc in the lower back.