Doctor's Notes on Hip Contusion
A hip contusion is an injury to the tissues around the hip joint caused by capillary breaks that allow blood into the hip joint tissues (a bruise). Signs and symptoms of a hip contusion are swelling within the muscles and tendons; the hip muscles may spasm and are painful to move. The bone and bursa may also be bruised so the structures can become inflamed and limited in their range of motion. The skin may be visibly bruised close to the joint.
The cause of a hip contusion is usually a blunt force that hits the area close to the hip joint (for example, a fall from a ladder, football injury, or auto accident).
What Are the Treatments for a Hip Contusion?
The treatment for a hip contusion is to follow the RICE method:
- Rest: Reduce stress (movement, weight bearing) on the contused hip.
- Ice: Apply an ice bag to the area for about 20 minutes every 4 hours.
- Compress: Use an elastic bandage to compress the contused hip.
- Elevate: Raise the bruised hip above the level of your heart as often as possible.
Too much stress on the hip while trying to heal can cause scar tissue to accumulate; minor contusions heal fast, but moderate to severe contusions take about 4-6 weeks to heal.
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Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.