Non-surgical Treatment for Hip Disorders

When treating hip pain, non-surgical treatments should always be considered first. In some cases, conservative treatments such as rest, activity restriction, physical therapy, and/or pain medication can resolve the pain and swelling. 

It's important to consult a physician if you are experiencing hip pain. After a physical exam, your doctor may prescribe one of the following non-surgical treatments.

Anti-inflammatory (pain) medication

Non-steroid anti-inflammatory medicines are used to treat mild to moderate hip pain and swelling from conditions such as muscular or cartilage tears, tendonitis, arthritis or synovitis. These medications may also be used in conjunction with physical therapy, or as part of the recovery plan after surgery.

Physical therapy

Physical therapy is a vital part of CHOP's Young Adult Hip Preservation Program. The hip joint is made up of about 30 different muscles; some quite deep in the body. Physical therapy strengthens these muscles, increases flexibility and range of motion, and can decrease swelling and inflammation. In many cases, physical therapy can eliminate the need for hip surgery. 

In cases where surgery is inevitable, pre-operative physical therapy can optimize your strength and conditioning in preparation for the procedure. After surgery, post-operative physical therapy is an important component in recovery and can help you resume daily activities. 

Ultrasound-guided injections

Injections are commonly used to relieve hip pain, and help diagnose the cause of the pain. For diagnostic procedures, our team uses dedicated high-resolution ultrasound equipment to guide injections of a local anesthetic directly into a tendon, bursa, or the hip joint itself.

Based on a patient's response to the injection, we may be better able to pinpoint the source of the pain. In addition to providing crucial diagnostic information, injections can provide a therapeutic effect resulting in potentially extended periods of pain relief.

Injections are also an important adjunct to physical therapy. By providing temporary pain relief, injections may provide a "window of opportunity" to maximize gains from therapy.

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Young Adult Hip Preservation Program

Watch: Stephanie's Story

Stephanie's hip pain kept her from her favorite pastime — running.