Key Points about Hip Tendonitis

  • Hip tendonitis is caused by inflammation or irritation of the tendon in the hip, which often develops when a person overuses the muscles in the hip.
  • Many athletes develop hip tendonitis while practicing their sport.
  • People with hip tendonitis may experience pain, mild swelling, and tenderness near the affected joint.
  • Call your doctor if you are experiencing hip tendonitis symptoms.
Common related conditions
Hip Dislocation Hip Fractures Hip Tendonitis

Overview

Hip tendonitis, also known as hip flexor tendonitis or tendonitis of the hip, can develop when the muscles are overused and pull on the tendons attached to the bone around the hip. When this occurs, the hip can become irritated and inflamed.

People with inflamed or irritated tendons often experience pain, mild swelling, and tenderness near the affected hip joint.

Hip tendonitis is more common in athletes such as runners, cyclists, ballet dancers, and swimmers who repetitively use similar muscles while participating in their sport.

Hip tendonitis causes

Typically, hip tendonitis will occur when an abnormal amount of stress is applied to the tendon from activity you are not used to doing.

Other causes of hip tendonitis include:

  • Repetitive stress related to overuse
  • Exercising suddenly without proper training

Hip tendonitis symptoms

The most common symptom is pain in the hip that gradually develops over time.

Other symptoms include:

  • Discomfort when contracting the hip muscle
  • Hip stiffness in the mornings or after being stationary for a long time
  • Tenderness in the hip
  • Pain that worsens the more you use your hip

Hip tendonitis complications

If left untreated, hip tendonitis will worsen over time, causing reduced or complete loss of hip movement.

Hip tendonitis risk factors

  • Age: As you age, your tendons become less flexible and more susceptible to injury.
  • Specific sports: Sports like gymnastics, running, cycling, ballet dancing, squatting, or lifting put you at a higher risk of developing hip tendonitis.
  • Increased training: People who suddenly increase training intensity and duration are at a higher risk of developing hip tendonitis.

Hip tendonitis prevention

To reduce your chances of developing hip tendonitis, follow these suggestions:

  • Stretch: Take the time to stretch after working out to maximize joint movement.
  • Improve technique: Take the time to learn proper activity or exercise techniques.
  • Reduce activity level: Avoid activities that put stress on your tendons for long periods.
  • Mix it up: If one activity continuously causes you pain, try something else.

Hip tendonitis diagnosis

You doctor will be able to diagnose you through a full physical examination. During the exam, he or she will take a complete medical history and evaluate your range of motion, flexibility, and hip joint stability.

An X-ray or MRI may be ordered to further assess the injury.

Hip tendonitis treatment

The goal of hip tendonitis treatment is to reduce inflammation and pain in the affected hip.

If caught early, treatment may include rest, ice, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications.

Harder to treat cases may require further treatment, such as:

  • Physical therapy: Used to decrease pain and reduce inflammation.
  • Medications: Your doctor may prescribe you with a pain reliever, corticosteroid, or platelet-rich plasma (PRP).
  • Surgery is a last resort option for patients who have not responded to non-surgical treatments. Surgical treatments include:
    • Dry needling: The process of putting small holes in the tendon with a fine needle to stimulate healing.
    • Ultrasonic treatment: The process of removing the tendon scar tissue with ultrasonic sound waves.
    • Surgery: Surgically repairing a tendon, especially if the tendon is torn away from the bone.

When should I see care?

If you are experiencing hip pain or other symptoms related to hip tendonitis, contact your doctor to make an appointment.

Next Steps

Your doctor will develop a customized treatment plan for your case. You may experience relief by resting, icing, and taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications.

If you are active or participate in activities that put stress on your hip tendons, make sure to take precautions like stretching or educating yourself on proper activity techniques to minimize your risk of developing hip tendonitis.

If your symptoms worsen and are impacting your daily activities, contact your doctor to schedule a follow-up appointment.