Hip Impingement, otherwise known as Femoro-Acetabular Impingement (FAI), is a condition which can affect anyone, from the elite sportsperson to an office worker. There may not be any symptoms of pain in a person who has hip impingement. Typically you notice stiffness and movement limitation long before any pain.
Hip impingement is a condition where there is too much friction within the hip joint. Damage occurs to either the boney surfaces or the soft tissues around the joint (labrum).
Signs and symptoms of hip impingement include:
· Difficulty with sitting for prolonged periods of time, especially on lower chairs.
· Hip stiffness/tightness
· Pain with hip/leg rotation
· Deep groin pain radiating to the outer hip region
The highest incidents of hip impingement occur in those sports which require the athlete to twist or pivot whilst swinging/kicking one leg (eg AFL or soccer).
There are 2 classifications of FAI: Pincer impingement and Cam impingement. It is extremely common for these to occur together.Pincer impingement occurs when the hip joint socket (acetabulum) is deeper than normal, due to increased bone formation around the socket. The joint damage can lead to deepening of the socket, making this condition worse.
Cam impingement occurs where there is an abnormal bone growth or ‘bump’ on the hip bone at the base of the ball. This causes damage to the joint cartilage.
If you suspect you have FAI, you should seek treatment immediately. FAI causes early osteo-arthritic changes within the hip joint, even in young people, and these changesYour Physiotherapist can assess your hip and help minimise the degree of friction within your hip. This can be achieved by assessing not only your hip but your whole lower limb posture, strength and biomechanics. Treatment can be as easy as correcting your hip posture, but the more severe case may require surgical intervention to correct structural abnormalities.
If you would like your Hip checked by a Physiotherapist, call our clinic on (02) 46473373.