The hip joint functions as one of the most important joints in the human body. Designed for both mobility and stability, the hip allows the entire lower extremity to move in three planes of motion, while providing an important shock absorption function to the torso and upper body. view
Trauma is the term used to describe injury. Trauma is classified by its severity depending on the amount of force used to cause the injury. view
Hip fractures are breaks in the upper part of the thigh bone (femur) and are the second-most common break in the human body after wrist fractures under the age of 75 years and the most common fracture after 75 years of age. view
A hip dislocation is classified according to the direction of the dislocation (anterior, posterior, superior, inferior), the amount of force it took to dislocate the hip, whether it is accompanied by a fracture (fracture/dislocation), and whether or not the patient has had a previous hip replacement on the affected side. view
Thigh bone (femur) fractures usually occur in younger patients after high speed injuries such as motor vehicle and motorcycle accidents. view
Compartment syndrome is an orthopedic emergency. Thigh compartment syndrome occurs when the pressure in the front, back, or inner thigh compartments rises above the blood pressure needed for the heart to pump blood to the thigh. view
Hip arthritis is the loss of the cartilage cushion in the joint contact surfaces that normally allows for smooth, pain-free gliding during hip motion. view
A bursa is a fluid-filled sac of tissue that helps tendons slide over themselves as well as over and around bones. view
A hip/thigh strain, by definition, is an injury to a muscle or muscles around the hip and thigh. These injuries can be caused by one specific injury, such as a fall or while playing sports, or by repetitive micro-trauma over time, often referred to as overuse injuries. view
Hip fractures are breaks in the upper part of the thigh bone (femur) and are the second-most common break in the human body after wrist fractures under the age of 75 years and the most common fracture after 75 years of age. Hip fractures usually occur in older patients with weaker bone. The upper part of the femur underneath the ball and socket joint will separate from the lower part of the femur. These fractures usually occur from a fall from a standing height. Younger patients can also get hip fractures, but these usually occur as a result of high-energy trauma such as a motor vehicle or motorcycle accident. X-rays show the break, its location and pattern. A physical examination is important to check for injuries to other structures, such as muscles or nerves.
Fractures of the hip are usually complete fractures and often require surgery. Surgery ensures that the bone is aligned in the correct position assuring bone healing and that the patient can begin to put weight on the leg immediately to prevent the leg from getting weaker from lack of use. Therapists help patients perform exercises to improve motion, strength, and to get the patient back to walking normally and with confidence. If the upper part of the femur (femoral neck) is broken but still in good alignment, pins can be placed in the bone through small incisions. If the femoral neck is broken severely, the patient may need a partial hip replacement in order to stabilize the thigh bone so the patient can walk right away. When the region of the femur at the base of the femoral neck or just below is broken, it is referred as an intertrochanteric or subtrochanteric femur fracture, respectively. These surgeries used to be done with long incisions using plates and screws. Now special slender metal rods can be placed inside the bone through small incisions. After surgery, therapists work with the patient to start moving the hip, working on strengthening the muscles around the hip and leg, and to begin walking again. Once the fracture is healed, most patients are able to return to their activities with or without limitations, based on their pre-injury level of ambulation and function.