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Millar Chiropractic

Hip Pain

Hip Pain

We Specialize in Hip Pain

At Millar Chiropractic Clinic, hip pain and hip problems are one of our "Areas of Excellence". We love to treat the hip and hip problems. We have the 'know-how" and the specialized tools to help in that treatment. Tools like HipTrac-Hip Traction. Laser, Shockwave Therapy, IASTM - Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization, Diathermy, and Non-Surgical Lumbar Decompression Traction. We like to diagnose and treat the hip. Many doctors don't like treating the hip and hip pain because hip pain can be caused by so many things. It requires thorough examination and imaging along with often a multi-faceted treatment regiment.  

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Hip Pain

What Are the Symptoms of a Hip Disorder?

The hip is a complicated joint made up of bone, cartilage, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and a lubricating fluid. As a result, the symptoms of a hip disorder will differ depending on the cause of the disorder and the particular component of the hip joint that is causing problems. Hip pain can be in the joint itself or around all four sides of the joint. It can be dull and achy or sharp and shooting. It can be localized to the hip joint or it can refer pain or discomfort deep into the hip joint or into the groin, buttock, thigh or leg. It can feel like your leg is going to go out and can't hold your weight. It often hurts lying in bed when you roll over on your hip. With chronic hip pain over time you develop tender points and trigger points around the hip, buttocks and leg.

Common Complaints with a Hip Problem Include:

  • pain in the hip joint or around the hip joint
  • limping and instability
  • difficulty supporting your weight and/or pain in the leg when you apply weight on that leg
  • reduced movement in the hip joint or leg
  • referred pain from the hip (may be felt in the leg, thigh, or buttocks)
  • referred pain to the hip from the SI Joint
  • referred pain from the low back to the hip (either the disc or facets)
  • muscle weakness, stiffness or pain
  • arthritis stiff achy pain can have redness or swelling (no injury or fall just woke up with pain)
  • pain in the buttocks
  • Sciatica pain and/or tingling down the leg to the knee 

Note: If you have fallen or had an accident involving your hip or leg and you develop swelling or pain in your hip, seek medical attention immediately. These are signs that a fracture may be present. An untreated fracture can cause serious complications.

Here are Some Conditions that Cause Hip Pain:

  • ARTHRITIS: Arthritic conditions such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are among the most common causes of hip pain, especially in older adults.  Arthritis leads to inflammation of the hip joint and the breakdown of the cartilage that normally cushions your hip bones. The pain gradually gets worse as the arthritis progresses. People with arthritis also feel stiffness and have reduced range of motion in the hip.
  • SPRAINS, STRAINS & TEARS: Injuries to muscles, ligaments and tendons can cause sprains, strains, and tears. Slips and falls accidents, sports and other injuries, lifting or twisting wrong, over use injuries, motor vehicle accidents or impact injuries top the list of what causes sprains, strains and tears. 
  • REFERRED PAIN FROM THE LOW BACK: Hip Pain may not be from the hip but instead be referred from the Low Back. Compression or chemical irritation of the some lumbar nerves can radiate pain, tingling, numbness or burning to the hip area. 
  • REFERRED PAIN FROM THE SI JOINT: Across the pelvis from the hip joint is the SI Joint or sacroiliac joint. This joint can be strained or sprained or have arthritis and all of them refer to the hip joint. 
  • HIP FRACTURES: Fractures of the hip are a particular problem in elderly people. With age, the bones can become weak and brittle. Weakened bones are more likely to fracture during a fall.
  • BURSITIS:  Inflammation of the small, fluid-filled sacs (called bursae) that protect muscles and tendons is usually due to repetitive activities that overwork or irritate the hip joint.
  • TENDINITIS:  Tendons are the thick bands of tissue that attach bones to muscles. Tendinitis is inflammation or irritation of the tendons. It's usually caused by repetitive stress from overuse.
  • MUSCLE LIGAMENT OR TENDON STRAIN SPRAIN: Repeated activities can put strain on the muscles, tendons, and ligaments that support the hips. When these structures become inflamed from overuse, they can cause pain and prevent the hip from functioning normally.
  • CANCERS:  Tumors that start in the bone (bone cancer) or that spread to the bone can cause pain in the hips, as well as in other bones of the body.
  • AVASCULAR NECROSIS:  This condition occurs when blood flow to the hip bone is reduced and the bone tissue dies as a result. Although it can affect other bones, avascular necrosis most often occurs in the hip. It can be caused by a hip fracture or dislocation, or from the long-term use of high-dose steroids (such as prednisone), among other causes.

Pain that comes directly from the hip joint can be from inflammation due to injury (sprains, strains, and tears. fractures), arthritis, or in rare cases, infection, or bony problems and even rarer cases malignancy (cancer.) can cause localized hip pain. Bone cancer is rare, making up less than 1 percent of all cancers. The good news is bone cancer usually easily  diagnosed with X-ray and CT scan, Infection is a little harder to diagnose as it may require a tissue culture. But the vast majority of hip pain and problems, something like 99% are not caused by infection or cancer and very treatable.

Low Back Pain

Referred Hip Pain

So Pain in the hip can come directly from the hip joint itself or it may referred pain from a problem somewhere else. Referred pain is pain that originates somewhere else, like the low back, and travels along the nerves to the hip area. The referred sensation of pain is often felt in the hip area but not necessarily from the point of the back where the nerve problem originates. 

One example of low back referred hip pain comes from the nerve at the level between the third and fourth or fourth and fifth lumbar vertebrae. Compression or chemical irritation of this nerve commonly causes referred pain into the hip. The hip joint will ache or burn or may even experience sharp pain; however, the joint itself should not be overly tender to touch or swollen. Because the pain signal originates in the back, treating the back with Non-Surgical Lumbar Decompression Traction, Millar Facet Therapy, or Disc Pump may relieve the pain. 

Treating Your Hip Pain

Our goal is to treat your hip pain with no drugs or surgery. Your Millar Doctor of Chiropractic has the training and equipment needed to help determine if your hip pain is coming from the hip joint itself, near by structures or a nerve in your spine. We have tools like HipTrac-Hip Traction. (In fact I think we are the only clinics in Huntsville with the HipTrac-Hip Traction system), Laser, Pulsewave Shockwave Therapy, IASTM - Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization, Shortwave Diathermy, and Non-Surgical Lumbar Decompression Traction. We always start with a thorough history, examination, and imaging to get to the root cause or true cause of your hip pain.

True hip pain (pain from the hip joint itself) can be acute (usually injury related) or a chronic (usually arthritis related) condition. The treatment goal for an acute hip injury is first to control and reduce the swelling. After the swelling is controlled, the next phase is to help restore the mobility and return the proper function of the hip joint and leg. The goal of treatment of a chronic hip condition is to determine what caused the hip joint to become symptomatic, relieve or eliminate that cause, and rehabilitate the hip joint and leg. Of course that's easer said than done. 

Acute Hip Pain (less than 3 months)

For most doctors and clinics, acute hip injuries can be initially difficult to treat as the actual hip joint resides a few inches beneath the level of the skin. But at Millar Chiropractic Clinics, we have FDA approved Class 4 Lasers. We can set the laser to treat the inflammation and pain in the hip joint itself and the surrounding tissues. We can also utilize HipTrac-Hip Traction which is very beneficial and gives great relief. And we can use E-stim, Ultrasound Therapy and Shortwave Diathermy to treat deep in the hip and increase blood flow and healing. 

Passive hip range of motion can also be very beneficial to reduce swelling. The application of passive motion is only to be done with an appropriate device or administered by a trained professional. Ask your Millar chiropractor about the use of passive motion to help reduce swelling.

Chronic Hip Pain (greater than 3 months)

Chronic hip pain requires the doctor to determine what is the root cause or true cause of your hip pain. The doctor must not only look at the hip they must look above and below the hip for the root cause. Then and only then can he or she determine your course of treatment. Your Millar chiropractor can perform these procedures and will recommend a suitable treatment program for your condition. Your Millar chiropractor will also outline goals and recommend changes in lifestyle to help reduce the chances of a re-injury and to better manage your present chronic complaint.

Often chronic hip pain and problems progress to Greater Trochanteric Pain Syndrome. This often involved not only the hip joint but the surrounding tissues and may extend into the thigh, hamstring or down the leg. 

Adjustive manipulation procedures can be made to a hip joint. We find that many benefit from HipTrac-Hip Traction and PulseWave Shockwave Therapy. Both HipTrac-hip traction and PulseWave Shockwave offer great success in treating hip problems. HipTrac and PulseWave Shockwave therapy enhances the healing process, fights inflammation, eliminates the pain and tenderness and may help prevent hip replacement surgery..Other therapies such as Electrical Stimulation, Short-wave Diathermy (one method to deliver moist heat into deep tissue), and IASTM - Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization can be used to help improve the hip and surrounding tissue pain. Once the patient get pain relief then stretching and exercises can also be added at the appropriate time to protect against future re-injury. 

Nutritional supplements may also be recommended. For instances, a proper uptake of calcium needs to be obtained by many senior citizens, especially women. Several spontaneous hip fractures could be avoided if bone density checks were checked during routine examines in the forth or fifth decade of life.  

Hip problems whether acute or chronic can both benefit from Millar Chiropractic Clinic care. Proper exercise, stretching, nutrition, and support can all aid in your recovery and enhance your functionality. The goal is to stay active but not create pain in the joint. Pain generally goes hand in hand with swelling and swelling leads to bone loss in the joint (osteoporosis) create calcium deposits around the tendons and joint (tendonitis and arthritis) and reduces mobility. Your Millar chiropractor will work with you and make a number of recommendations to help you maintain your mobility and independence while minimizing joint irritation.

Dr. Millar, DC CCEP (Certified Chiropractic Extremity Practitioner) specializes in treating extremity pain like hip pain. For 2 years after graduating Chiropractic college continued post-graduate education, testing and certification from the Council on Extremities and was awarded the coveted CCEP Certified Chiropractic Extremities Practitioner designation. This 2 years of post-graduate training is spent studying the treatment of hips, knees, ankles, feet and toes as well as shoulders, elbows, wrists, hands, fingers and thumbs. Dr. Millar says, "the HipTrac-Hip Traction along with the PulseWave Shockwave Therapy is a game changer for chronic hip joint problems. We've been using Class 4 Laser like the MLS Robotic Laser with great success for years on acute hip problems (less than 3 months).  We can offer life changing results for both acute and chronic hip pain and problems to our Huntsville patients." Dr. Millar practices at Millar Chiropractic - Huntsville (Downtown) on Tuesday and Thursday. (256) 539-2000.


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