The hip joint is constructed of bone and ligamentous tissue to facilitate stability and a large range of motion. Chronic injuries due to overuse are more likely to affect the hip joint than acute injuries.
Common injuries and conditions affecting the hip are: tendonitis and bursitis, stress fractures, sprains and capsulitis.
A sprain is the result of a forceful twist in a joint. This puts pressure on the supportive ligaments within the joint, insufficient to cause dislocation, but enough to cause significant pain and swelling.
The increased number of individuals regularly participating in sport has led to a greater incidence of stress fractures over the last 20 years. Stress fractures are the result of repetitive heavy loading activities, such as running and jumping, creating partial or complete breaks in the bone structure of the joint.
Tendonitis and Bursitis
Tendonitis and bursitis are grouped together due to the proximity of tendons and bursa in the hip making it difficult to distinguish between the two conditions.
Tendons are composed of flexible fibrous tissue that connect muscle to bone. Tendonitis is inflammation of the tendons caused by repetitive strenuous movements, which leads to pain and swelling.
A bursa is a fluid filled sack, which acts as cushion between bone, muscle and tendons, within a moving joint. Bursitis is inflammation of the bursa caused by overuse or direct trauma, which also leads to pain and swelling.
Capsulitis is inflammation of the entire surrounding of the hip joint that can limit the range of movement in all directions, resulting in stiffness and pain.