Chronic hip pain is a common and confusing symptom as there are many causes. It is important to make an accurate diagnosis of the cause so that appropriate treatment can be directed at the problem. Hip pain involves any pain in or around the hip joint. Hip-related pain is not always felt directly over the hip. Instead, you may feel groin pain or pain in the middle of your thigh. Similarly, pain in the hip may actually reflect a problem in your back or pelvis.
If you have chronic hip pain, some common causes include:
· Arthritis hip pain from degeneration
· Bursitis hip painfrom overuse or injury
· Tendonitis from repetitive or strenuous activity
· Strain or sprain of muscles and that attach to the groin area
· Low-back strain or sciatica
Pelvic pain and groin pain are also common and have many causes. For women, pelvic pain may originate in gynecologic areas (cervix, uterus, or ovaries). In men, groin pain may originate in the testes or scrotum. Sometimes the cause is unknown. Disorders that can cause pelvic pain and groin pain may also be:
· Intestinale.g., gastroenteritis, inflammatory bowel disease, diverticulitis, appendicitis, tumors, constipation, intestinal obstruction, perirectal abscess, irritable bowel syndrome
· Urinary e.g., bladder infection, interstitial cystitis, kidney stones
· Musculoskeletal e.g., pelvic floor pain, abdominal muscle strains
· Nerve related e.g.vulvodynia
· Psychogenic e.g., effects of previous physical, psychological, or sexual abuse
· Activity related e.g., the effects of intense or prolonged activities such as cycling or running
Rule out a serious or treatable cause of your chronic hip pain or pelvic pain before proceeding. When considering chronic hip and pelvic pain of a musculoskeletal nature note:
· The spine must rest on the pelvis in a way which allows the hips to glide easily in their socket when the legs move
· The hip is a ball and socket joint which must attach to the pelvis in a very particular way for the legs to work well
· The spine, hips, and legs must function as a system or the muscles in the pelvic and groin areas can be stressed
· Stressed pelvic and groin muscles can result in chronic pain
If surgery or drugs don’t feel right for you, and you’ve rested enough, consider a form of hip pain relief that takes your entire musculoskeletal system into account. The Feldenkrais Method has been used as a successful treatment for hundreds of people with hip, pelvic, and groin pain without drugs, shots, or surgery. Feldenkrais uses simple, gentle movements to reorganize posture, flexibility, strength and coordination. Based on the neurological processes by which we learn movement skills, it is a novel approach to hip pain relief, harnessing the power of brain plasticity to help the body function more efficiently. More efficient use of self creates environments within which chronic hip and pelvic pain can heal. Consider what the Feldenkrais Method can do for you.
Lori L. Malkoff, MD completed her Medical Degree at UCIrvine, earned a Master of Public Health degree at SDSU, and completed post-graduate training in Family Medicine at UCLA. She has been in private practice for 23 years. Dr. Malkoff is one of less than 10 Medical Doctors in the U.S. to be certified as a Feldenkrais Practitioner, and currently owns and operates The Feldenkrais Center of San Diego. Visit http://www.thefeldenkraiscenter.com to learn more.