Do you experience lower back pain and hip pain, or maybe lower back pain and hip stiffness, or no back pain but just a stiff hip? Did you know that 30 – 40% of hip pain originates from the lower back (Rosedale 2017), and did you also know that a stiff hip complex maybe all lower back related. Therefore, it’s important to clear the lower spine when assessing a hip joint complaint (Prather 2017).
Also, if your question is “but what about if a scan shows a pathology or a damaged structure” do we still clear the spine? The answer is yes, we still do because a high percentage of the population that are pain free also present with these signs on imaging the hip, telling us that imaging should not guide treatment, pain and dysfunction should.
So, if you come in with a hip complaint, a good quality clinician will not only assess your hip thoroughly, focusing on aspects such as range of motion & muscle resistance testing, but will also assess your lower back thoroughly to rule it out as a cause of your issue. Once having moved your spine through gentle patterns in a specific direction, known as a “direction preference” (McKenzie 2004), the clinician will then go back and re-test your hip to see if there have been any positive or negative changes in range of motion or pain. The outcome of this will dictate the rehabilitation approach, ensuring maximum efficacy through a clearer picture of the root cause.
Are you suffering from hip or lower back pain? The problem may be stemming from an alternate site, so come on in to Absolute and ensure your treatment process is as effective and efficient as possible, with thorough assessment and ongoing health plans from our specialists.
Written by Absolutes Myotherapist Rob Orr
Post. Grad. MSK, Adv. Dip. Myo., Dip. App. Sp
- Rosedale, Richard, 2017 Mechanical Care Forum
- Hip and Lumbar Spine Physical Examination Findings in People Presenting With Low Back Pain, With or Without Lower Extremity Pain: Article in Journal of Orthopedic and Sports Physical Therapy February 2017
- McKenzie, R, May, S 2004, The Lumbar Spine Mechanical Diagnosis & Therapy volume one, Spinal publications Waikanae, New Zealand.
- McKenzie, R, May, S 2004, The Lumbar Spine Mechanical Diagnosis & Therapy volume two, Spinal publications Waikanae, New Zealand.