*
Hip Bone and Local Musculature  
Abdominal muscle and pelvis

The iliac crest is the top curve of the pelvis toward the front of the body.

Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Definition  

A hip pointer is a bruise to the upper part of your hip. Many muscles, including abdominal muscles, attach at this site. A hip pointer can involve injury to bone and soft tissue.

*

Causes  

Hip pointers are caused by a direct blow to the bony part of the pelvis. This commonly occurs in when the pelvis comes into contact with a hard object, like a helmut or the boards.. It can also occur by taking a hard fall onto the hip.

*

Risk Factors  

Participating in contact sports increases your chance of developing a hip pointer. Football players and hockey players are especially at risk. Hip pointers are also more common while playing basketball and soccer.

*

Symptoms  

Symptoms of a hip pointer include:

  • Severe pain
  • Tenderness
  • Pain with activity
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Soreness
  • Muscle spasms
  • Decreased range of motion
*

Diagnosis  

Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. You may be referred to specialist. An orthopedist focuses on bones and joints. A sports medicine physician focuses on sport-related injuries.

Images may need to be taken of structures inside your body. This can be done with x-ray.

*

Treatment  

Hip pointers are treated with:

  • Rest—this may include the use of crutches to move around
  • Ice
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • For severe pain, some athletes may receive an injection of a numbing medicine and/or steroid directly into the hip
  • Physical therapy to help you regain mobility and build muscle strength

It may take several weeks to heal and for normal movement to return. Check with your doctor about a timeline to return to normal activities. You may be able to return to activity as soon as you feel you are able.

*

Prevention  

Hip pointers occur through direct blows to the affected area. This is often accidental. As a result, not all hip pointers can be prevented. However, make sure to wear proper sports equipment and padding to decrease your chance of any injury.