On occasion, feeling your hip pop is not uncommon and not something to worry about, especially if it isn’t uncomfortable or painful. However, if it happens quite often or becomes a problem, you should see an orthopedic surgeon to diagnose and treat it appropriately. The most common cause of feeling a regular pop in your hip is snapping hip syndrome, which can usually be treated without surgery or with minimally invasive procedures.
The Anatomy of the Hip
The hip is one of the more complex joints in the body, providing stability for the entire upper body while also a much wider range of motion than others. Because of its ball-and-socket form, it has several features that layer to create a strong, versatile, and essential part of human anatomy.
The socket, formed by the pelvis, receives the ball at the top of the femur. The joint is surrounded by the labrum, which effectively seals this joint, keeping cartilage and fluid needed for smooth movement contained within. The ligaments surround the labrum and hold the joint together securely but still allow movement and flexibility. Outside of this, tendons attach the muscles to the joint, allowing us to move and flex.
As you can see, the hip relies on many pieces to function correctly. Several ligaments within this design can each be affected by snapping hip syndrome. The first step in addressing the problem is determining which one is causing the trouble. Your orthopedic surgeon can pinpoint this by the location of the pop you feel. It will typically be along the hip’s outside, front, or back. Occasionally, cartilage problems can mimic snapping hip symptoms but are not associated with ligaments, requiring a different treatment approach.
Snapping Hip Causes
Once your orthopedic surgeon has determined the ligament affected by snapping hip syndrome, it’s much easier to understand the cause. This condition is sometimes referred to as dancer’s hip because it is common for dancers and athletes to experience tight muscles and tendons surrounding the hip joint, resulting in snapping hip syndrome. However, your medical history, a physical exam, and imaging tests can rule out any other underlying causes.
Possible Treatment Options
Once a diagnosis is made as to the cause of your snapping hip, your surgeon will discuss options for treatment. Often, these symptoms can be treated non-surgically or with minimally invasive options. The first step is typically to rest the joint and modify daily activities that worsen the problem. From there, physical therapy may be recommended to help relax the muscles and tendons of the hip joint and increase the ligaments’ flexibility.
There are other options to relieve your symptoms for more painful cases of snapping hip syndrome or those that don’t respond well to rest and physical therapy.
- Corticosteroid Injection: This injection is made directly into the hip joint and can help reduce inflammation that can worsen symptoms. Steroid injections may be helpful alongside physical therapy for long-term results.
- Arthroscopic Surgery: As a minimally invasive surgical treatment, your surgeon can repair features of your hip joint using small instruments and a camera inserted through relatively tiny incisions.
- Open Surgery: Reserved for severe cases of snapping hip, your surgeon makes a larger incision to have a better view of the joint or more access to it to make the proper repairs and relieve symptoms.
FullRange Spine & Ortho, understands snapping hip syndrome. Contact the clinic today to schedule an evaluation and learn more about possible treatment options to relieve your symptoms.
Posted on Behalf of FullRange Spine & Ortho