• Hip Pointers


    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.
    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.


    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 helmet. 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 of a hip pointer include:
    • Severe pain
    • Tenderness
    • Pain with activity
    • Swelling
    • Bruising
    • Soreness
    • Muscle spasms
    • Decreased range of motion


    You will be asked 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.


    Hip pointers are treated with:
    • Restricting activities to allow the area to heal; this may involve using crutches to keep weight off the hip
    • Ice therapy to help relieve swelling
    • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to reduce pain
    • Injection of a numbing medication and/or steroid directly into the hip to relieve severe pain
    • Physical therapy to help you regain mobility and build muscle strength


    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.


    American Physical Therapists Association http://www.apta.org

    Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians http://familydoctor.org


    Canadian Orthopaedic Association http://www.coa-aco.org

    Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation http://www.canorth.org


    Adkins S, Figler R. Hip pain in athletes. Am Fam Physician. 2000 Apr 1;61(7):2109-2118. Available at: http://www.aafp.org/afp/20000401/2109.html. Accessed March 10, 2015.

    Hall M. Anderson J. Hip pointers. Clin Sports Med. 2013 Apr;32(2):325-330.

    Waite B, Krabak BJ. Examination and Treatment of Pediatric Injuries of the Hip and Pelvis. Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Clinics of North America. 2008;19(2).

    Revision Information

  • LiveWell personal health survey

    How healthy are you really? Find out – free.Learn more

    It's time to stop guessing. If you want to make some changes but just aren't sure how, the free personal health survey from LiveWell is a great place to start.

  • HeartSHAPE Spotlight

    At risk for a heart attack? Learn more

    Fight heart disease and prevent heart attacks. HeartSHAPE® is a painless, non-invasive test that checks pictures of your heart for early-stage coronary disease.

  • Calories and Energy Needs

    Calorie NeedsLearn more

    How many calories do you need to eat each day to maintain your weight and fuel your physical activity? Enter a few of your stats into this calculator to find out.

  • Ideal Body Weight

    Ideal Body WeightLearn more

    Using body mass index as a reference, this calculator determines your ideal body weight range. All you need to do is enter your height.

  • Body Mass Index

    Body Mass IndexLearn more

    This tool considers your height and weight to assess your weight status.

  • Can we help answer your questions?

    Wellmont Nurse Connection is your resource for valuable health information any time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Speak to a Nurse any time, day or night, at (423) 723-6877 or toll-free at 1-877-230-NURSE.