The hip joint is made up of two bones: the pelvis and the femur (the thighbone). It is the largest ball-and-socket joint in your body. The "ball" is the rounded end of the femur (also called the femoral head). The "socket" is a concave depression in the lower side of the pelvis (also called the acetabulum). The femoral head fits into the acetabulum to form the hip joint. Many powerful muscles connect to and cross by the hip joint, making it possible for us to accelerate quickly during actions like walking, running and jumping.
The hip is a complicated mechanism and therefore hip pain can originate in many different parts of the joint. Learning the anatomy of your hip will better enable you to pinpoint your pain and work with your doctor to keep it from limiting your life.
General causes of hip pain include:
- Muscle strain
- Bone fracture (such as a fracture of the femoral neck)
- Bone spurs or other malformations of your hip
If you are experiencing pain in your hip or any of the conditions listed above, you should consult an orthopaedic surgeon for help in determining the severity of the problem.
To learn more about hip problems and injuries, choose one of the links below: