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Hip dislocation?

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Last night i was laying flat on my back and decided to turn on my left side to go to sleep. After i turned over and my legs relaxed my right hip popped (felt like it was dislocated or something-PAINFUL) so i immediately sat up and it just popped back into place. The pain was gone for the most part but its hard for me to walk without some pain. It is also difficult to put alot of pressure on my right leg.

I'm 19 years old. I don't play any sports, however, I do walk alot. I do sometimes pop my own hips, but it's painless.

This pain was pretty bad but it did not last long considering I sat up immediately to try to relieve the pain. It almost felt like my hip collapsed and my leg came out of the socket. That may sound strange, but it all happened so quickly! My hip feels fine while sitting, only when pressure is put on it does it hurt.

Why did my hip do this? Is the pain going to go away? I don't have health insurance right now so I'm hoping it will go away!
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replied April 18th, 2011
Especially eHealthy
ericakate08,

You did not dislocate your hip. Unless you were born with DDH (developmental dysplasia of the hip) and have a very shallow acetabulum (hip socket) or you have had a severe injury where the hip socket is now deformed, it is very difficult to dislocate a hip.

The hip is a ball and socket joint, that is deep (as compared to the shoulder which gives up stability for motion). The socket is deepened further with a cartilaginous rim called the labrum. The femoral head (the ball portion) is held in the socket by the bony architecture, the labrum, the joint capsule, tendons of the muscles surrounding the joint, and several very stout ligament complexes. It takes a hugh amount of energy to dislocate the hip and, as such, a dislocated hip is a very severe injury.

What you most likely did was to snap a tendon over a bony prominence, as this is very common. The tendon of the iliopsoas muscle is a frequent culprit. Ligaments can also snap. It can be painful some times, or as you have noted, the snapping can be pain free and even helpful in some cases. There's even a disorder called the snapping hip syndrome.

There are some other fairly rare causes of the symptoms you had. In a disorder called Ehlers Danlos syndrome (the "rubber man" disorder), there is a problem with the patient's collagen fibers. These patients are often referred to as "double jointed", or in other words, have very lax ligaments and, as such, "sloppy", or loose, joints. Osteogenesis imperfecta, another collagen disorder, can also cause laxity in the joints. You would know if you had either of these problems.

So, most likely you snapped a tendon. This is treated with ice, then heat after a few day, as needed. Maintain a full range of motion, doing it in a hot tub or pool is the easiest. Use a cane in the opposite hand if needed. Ibuprofen is good for any inflammation that may have developed, as well as being a descent pain reliever (if you can take NSAID's).

If this occurs more frequently or you develop ongoing pain in the hip, you may need to see a physician. Hope this has helped some. Good luck.
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