Conditions We Treat

Hip And Leg Pain

The hip joint is a ball and socket joint that joins the femur (large thigh bone) to the pelvis. The apex of the femur is a spherical ball that fits into the pelvic bone socket (acetabulum).

man holding leg in pain

What Causes Hip and Leg Pain?

The causes of hip and leg pain can be systemic or related to the movements of the hip and leg. These include:

Trauma And Injury:

One of the most common causes of hip and leg pain is injury or trauma. It can happen to anyone, from the most active to the most sedentary. Without appropriate treatment and rehabilitation, post-traumatic pain can become chronic. Hip dislocations, femur fractures, car accidents, sports-related events, and falls are all common causes of hip and leg pain. Initially, they will cause acute pain. If left untreated, it will become chronic pain.


Bursitis develops when the bursa in the hip joint gets inflamed and irritated. It may cause a burning sensation that worsens with movement.

Osteoarthritis (OA):

Degenerative arthritis or degenerative joint disease are terms used to describe osteoarthritis (OA). In the United States, this is the most common cause of arthritis. Osteoarthritis is caused by recurrent joint wear and tear and can develop chronic, non-inflammatory arthritis of any movable joint.

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA):

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), unlike osteoarthritis (OA), is a chronic, systemic, degenerative, and inflammatory arthritis. Infections with viruses, bacteria, and genetic factors (HLA-DR4), can cause inflammation.

Avascular Femoral Head Necrosis:

This disorder is caused by a lack of blood circulation to the bone. The bone develops necrosis, or the breakdown of normal tissue, in the absence of an adequate blood supply. A fracture of the femoral neck or dislocation of the femoral head that affects the blood vessels that supply the femoral head might cause a compromised blood supply.

Labral Tears:

The acetabulum, or hip socket, is covered with cartilage known as the labrum. It permits the femur ball in your hip joint to move smoothly. A labral tear can be caused by an injury or wear and tear arthritis.

Lumbar Radiculitis:

Various conditions can irritate and worsen the lower back’s spinal nerves. When a nerve root is inflamed, it can radiate pain into your lower limbs. The pain is known as referred pain because it is perceived in the hip but originates in the low back.

How is Hip and Leg Pain Diagnosed?

Taking a thorough history and physical exam is frequently the first step. Among the most common questions your doctor will ask you are:

  • Where is the pain located?
  • How long has the pain usually lasted?
  • Are you taking any medicines or other pain relief treatments? Do they have any effect?
  • Is there a history of arthritis or other autoimmune disorders in your family?

Following a thorough history and physical examination, your doctor may recommend additional tests, such as radiographic images and blood testing. Imaging techniques are beneficial because they allow your doctor to observe what’s going on inside the affected joint. These include:


It is a diagnostic examination that uses electromagnetic energy rays to examine the body’s more rigid structures (bones).

CT scan:

It is a diagnostic technique that uses X-rays and computer technologies to create cross-sectional images of the body. It is beneficial because it produces detailed images of the body (bones, muscles, and organs).

MRI scans:

These are more detailed than CT scans and X-rays.


Another diagnostic technique is to test the fluid in your joint. It includes how much fluid is present and its consistency. An Arthrocentesis is especially important if your doctor suspects you have gouty arthritis.

Lab Tests:

Your doctor may also suggest other tests. These may include:

  • Complete blood count (CBC)
  • White blood cell count (WBC)
  • Antinuclear antibody (ANA)
  • Erythrocyte sedimentation rate
  • Rheumatoid factor
  • Urine analysis

Treatment Options for Hip and Leg Pain

Treatments for hip and leg pain depend on an accurate diagnosis that identifies the cause of your pain. It helps your pain doctor create a specific treatment plan that addresses the underlying cause and the symptoms. Treatment options include:

Physical Therapy:

Physical therapy can also be used to treat the underlying cause of your pain. Staying active and participating in physical therapy are the most popular and recommended treatments for addressing hip and leg pain from any cause.


When used as indicated, Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) can relieve pain and inflammation.

Intra-Articular Joint Injections:

Another treatment option is intra-articular joint injections. Because of its efficacy, minimally invasive nature, and long-acting effects, intra-articular joint injections are increasingly attracting acceptance for treating arthritis. A joint injection may benefit arthritis patients by not only easing pain by lowering inflammation and numbing the joint, but also assist with diagnosis.

The most crucial and significant benefit of joint injections is the immediate relief of symptoms, which allows you to resume normal activities. Then you can return to your regular activities and work toward long-term healing.


For severe cases of arthritis and joint pain, there are numerous surgical and interventional alternatives too. Your doctor may suggest them depending on the reason for your pain. Each person in pain is an individual who requires a unique pain management approach. So consult your doctor for a customized treatment plan to manage your chronic leg and hip pain.

Improving Patients’ Quality of Life Through Personalized Care

If you’re struggling with neck, back, or hip pain or any other spine related issues, schedule an appointment with us today to get back to living your life the way you’d like to.

Common Conditions We Treat