Hip Problems & Injuries

Our specialists can get you moving again and back on your feet doing what you love.

Your hip joint can withstand repeated motion and lots of wear and tear but overuse, aging, sports injuries and bone conditions can result in pain, decreased mobility, injuries and conditions.

Highly-skilled specialists at IU Health Orthopedics & Sports Medicine have expertise in treating every type of hip injury or condition. Your physicians will develop a care plan for your individual needs, including non-surgical and surgical options.

Common Hip Problems

The most frequently seen causes of hip pain include the following:

  • Osteoarthritis. Also referred to as "wear and tear" arthritis, osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that cushions the bones of the hip wears away, letting the bones rub together, causing hip pain and stiffness.
  • Fractures. For older adults, with 90 percent occurring to people over age 60 and an increasing risk with each decade, fractures of the hip commonly cause problems. With age, the bones can become weak and brittle, thus more likely to fracture during a fall.
  • Bursitis. Repetitive activities that overwork or irritate the hip joint often cause inflammation of the small, fluid-filled sacs (called bursae) that protect muscles and tendons. Bursitis pain can either build up gradually or occur suddenly and severely. Bursitis can also cause stiffness and loss of motion.
  • Avascular necrosis. In this condition, a dislocation, fracture, tumor or other disease may limit the blood supply to the hip, resulting in the breakdown or collapse of your hip bone.

Hip Osteoarthritis

Also referred to as "wear and tear" arthritis, osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that cushions the bones of the hip wears away, letting the bones rub together, causing hip pain and stiffness.

Osteoarthritis is one of the most common causes of chronic hip pain. It affects more than 60 million people in the United States and is the leading cause of disability for people above the age of 15.

Hip osteoarthritis is characterized by severe pain in the groin, buttocks or thighs. It can also manifest as pain when walking or at rest, as a worsening limp or as a progressive decrease in hip motion.

Causes and Contributing Factors

Sometimes, other contributing factors can make your hip pain worse. These can include:

  • Genetics
  • Repetitive, high-impact activities
  • Previous surgeries
  • Obesity, which can cause additional wear and tear on hip joints
  • Injuries, including fractures that have not healed properly or old sports injuries

Be sure to talk with your doctor about any additional factors that may be contributing to your hip pain.

Overview

Common Hip Problems

The most frequently seen causes of hip pain include the following:

  • Osteoarthritis. Also referred to as "wear and tear" arthritis, osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that cushions the bones of the hip wears away, letting the bones rub together, causing hip pain and stiffness.
  • Fractures. For older adults, with 90 percent occurring to people over age 60 and an increasing risk with each decade, fractures of the hip commonly cause problems. With age, the bones can become weak and brittle, thus more likely to fracture during a fall.
  • Bursitis. Repetitive activities that overwork or irritate the hip joint often cause inflammation of the small, fluid-filled sacs (called bursae) that protect muscles and tendons. Bursitis pain can either build up gradually or occur suddenly and severely. Bursitis can also cause stiffness and loss of motion.
  • Avascular necrosis. In this condition, a dislocation, fracture, tumor or other disease may limit the blood supply to the hip, resulting in the breakdown or collapse of your hip bone.

Hip Osteoarthritis

Also referred to as "wear and tear" arthritis, osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that cushions the bones of the hip wears away, letting the bones rub together, causing hip pain and stiffness.

Osteoarthritis is one of the most common causes of chronic hip pain. It affects more than 60 million people in the United States and is the leading cause of disability for people above the age of 15.

Hip osteoarthritis is characterized by severe pain in the groin, buttocks or thighs. It can also manifest as pain when walking or at rest, as a worsening limp or as a progressive decrease in hip motion.

Causes and Contributing Factors

Sometimes, other contributing factors can make your hip pain worse. These can include:

  • Genetics
  • Repetitive, high-impact activities
  • Previous surgeries
  • Obesity, which can cause additional wear and tear on hip joints
  • Injuries, including fractures that have not healed properly or old sports injuries

Be sure to talk with your doctor about any additional factors that may be contributing to your hip pain.

Non-Surgical Treatment

Your IU Health physician may first recommend non-surgical treatments and lifestyle changes to provide relief for your hip pain, including:

  • Exercise conditioning and strengthening: Low-impact exercise such as swimming, elliptical machine and stationary biking along with gentle strength training can help keep your hip and thigh muscles strong around your joints and retain your range of motion.
  • Weight-loss: Losing weight is the only proven method to significantly slow or stop the progression of arthritis. It decreases the amount of force your hip joints must tolerate.
  • Activity modification and assistive devices: You can avoid or minimize the activities that increase your pain. Rest and getting enough sleep can provide relief. Using a cane or a walker may also help you avoid pain.
  • Medication: Using over-the-counter or prescription anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen, Meloxicam, Nabumetone or Celebrex can provide you with pain relief.
  • Injections: Steroid injections may provide short-term joint pain relief for you.

Surgical Expertise

If non-surgical treatment does not provide relief or meet your goals, your physician may recommend surgery. Highly trained and experienced IU Health orthopedic surgeons provide the latest minimally invasive surgical techniques to speed your recovery.

They take care of the most complex cases including traumatic fracture, limb preservation and complete joint replacement. Surgical procedures have the potential to relieve your pain and restore your mobility and function.

Treatment

Non-Surgical Treatment

Your IU Health physician may first recommend non-surgical treatments and lifestyle changes to provide relief for your hip pain, including:

  • Exercise conditioning and strengthening: Low-impact exercise such as swimming, elliptical machine and stationary biking along with gentle strength training can help keep your hip and thigh muscles strong around your joints and retain your range of motion.
  • Weight-loss: Losing weight is the only proven method to significantly slow or stop the progression of arthritis. It decreases the amount of force your hip joints must tolerate.
  • Activity modification and assistive devices: You can avoid or minimize the activities that increase your pain. Rest and getting enough sleep can provide relief. Using a cane or a walker may also help you avoid pain.
  • Medication: Using over-the-counter or prescription anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen, Meloxicam, Nabumetone or Celebrex can provide you with pain relief.
  • Injections: Steroid injections may provide short-term joint pain relief for you.

Surgical Expertise

If non-surgical treatment does not provide relief or meet your goals, your physician may recommend surgery. Highly trained and experienced IU Health orthopedic surgeons provide the latest minimally invasive surgical techniques to speed your recovery.

They take care of the most complex cases including traumatic fracture, limb preservation and complete joint replacement. Surgical procedures have the potential to relieve your pain and restore your mobility and function.

Patient Stories for Hip Problems & Injuries

Medline Plus

The MedlinePlus website produced by the National Library of Medicine, brings you information about diseases, conditions, and wellness issues.

Arthritis Foundation

The Arthritis Foundation website provides information and resources, access to care, advancements in science and community connections.

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

OrthoInfo provides information about musculoskeletal conditions and injuries — how they are treated, as well as prevention information. Orthopaedic surgeons and members of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons provide articles and videos on the website.

Resources

Medline Plus

The MedlinePlus website produced by the National Library of Medicine, brings you information about diseases, conditions, and wellness issues.

Arthritis Foundation

The Arthritis Foundation website provides information and resources, access to care, advancements in science and community connections.

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

OrthoInfo provides information about musculoskeletal conditions and injuries — how they are treated, as well as prevention information. Orthopaedic surgeons and members of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons provide articles and videos on the website.