Hip Tendonitis

Hip tendonitis is inflammation of any one of a number of tendons in the hip although degeneration of the tendon is probably a more accurate description.

Symptoms of a hip tendonitis

Symptoms typically include pain which develops gradually over time. There will be tenderness at a specific point on the hip where the tendon originates from. Stretching the muscle involved may be uncomfortable and the hip may feel stiff in the mornings or after long rest periods. Often pain will ease off with activity as the tendon warms up only to return worse later.

Causes

Tendonitis occurs when the tendon is put under a lot of strain, either doing something that it is not used to, doing the activity more than normal or due to biomechanical problems. Tendonitis may also be known as Tendinitis or Tendinopathy, which is actually the most accurate name as the term 'itis' is misleading.

'Itis' at the end of a word refers to inflammation and in most cases of overuse tendon injuries, it has been shown that there are no inflammatory cells present. The condition is more of a degenerative injury, causing disorientation of the collagen fibres and an increase in tendon cells. The notoriously poor blood supply of tendons mean they are often slow to heal.

Hip tendonitis treatment

  • Rest from aggravating activities.
  • Apply the RICE principle - rest, ice, compression, elevation.
  • Gentle stretching of the affected muscle - provided this is not painful.
  • Sports massage and ultrasound therapy from a qualified professional may be effective.
  • Your Doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen.
  • Gentle strengthening exercises for the associated muscle once pain-free.
  • Eccentric strengthening is particularly important for tendon rehabilitation.
  • Determine what may have caused the injury and correct any problems (i.e. over-training, muscle imbalances etc)

Watch our interview with Dr Maria Madge (chiropractor) about hip pain.