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What Are the Symptoms of a Dislocated Hip?

What Are the Symptoms of a Dislocated Hip?

Surrounded by muscles, ligaments, and cartilage, the hip is a ball and socket joint connecting your thigh bones to your acetabulum, which are sockets in the pelvis. When the thigh bone is forcibly removed from the acetabulum, a hip dislocation occurs. Below are some of the causes, symptoms, and treatments of a dislocated hip.

Types of Hip Dislocations and Their Causes 

There are different types of dislocated hips depending on the cause of the injury.

  • Posterior hip dislocation – When the thigh bone moves backward out of the socket
  • Anterior hip dislocation – When the thigh bone moves forward out of the socket

Patients who have undergone hip replacement can also dislocate their prosthetic hip and poor hip development can cause dislocations in infants and children.

Common Causes of Hip Dislocations

Motor vehicle accidents and injuries are the leading cause of most hip dislocations. Athletes that play high-impact or high-contact sports, such as football, rugby, or skiing, often experience hip dislocations as well. Hip dislocations can also be caused by major slips and falls that result in a high impact.

Signs and Symptoms of a Dislocated Hip

Pain, muscle spasm, or inability to move the hip are the most common symptoms of a hip dislocation. Depending on the type of hip dislocation, the following physical signs may appear:

  • With a posterior hip dislocation, the thigh bone moves back and the hip rotates inward making your foot point towards your body.
  • With an anterior hip dislocation, the thigh bone moves forward and the hip will rotate outwards pointing your foot away from your body.

Dislocated Hip Diagnosis and Treatment

Official diagnosis happens during a physical exam after the patient undergoes an X-ray, MRI, or CT scan. It’s possible for a hip to be pushed back into place by a doctor when the patient is under anesthetics, but if the dislocation caused more trauma to the body, such as tears or fractures in the soft tissue, nerves, or blood vessels, it might be necessary for the patient to undergo orthopedic surgery.

Hip Dislocation Recovery

Since a dislocated hip can cause serious debilitating problems in the long-run, it’s important for patients to successfully recover with help from professionals. Our team at Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine is proud to get people moving again without pain. If you’ve experienced a dislocated hip or another type of orthopaedic injury, our team is here to support you in regaining mobility. Please request an appointment online or give us a call at 904-825-0540.

Paul Roettges, MDPaul Roettges, MD
A member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the American Association of Knee and Hip Surgeries, Dr. Roettges performs hip and knee replacements as well as complex unresolved hip and knee pain.