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What are the Signs and Symptoms of a Hip Flexor Strain?

AdobeStock 66719504 300x200 - What are the Signs and Symptoms of a Hip Flexor Strain?When the hip flexor muscles are strained, pulled, injured, or torn, it may cause hip flexor strain. A wide range of motions may lead to this condition, and the primary symptom of hip flexor strain is sharp pain.

The hip area can sustain damage ranging from minor injuries requiring little treatment to more serious injuries that lead to the muscles detaching from the bone. Third-degree sprains are the most serious hip flexor injuries. In this condition, there is a bone fracture along with the muscle sprain.

Southern California Hip Institute (SCHI), led by board certified orthopedic surgeon Dr. Tigran Garabekyan, provides various orthopedic surgery procedures to patients in Los Angeles, Century City, CA, and surrounding locations.


Key Facts about Hip Flexor Strain

Flexors refer to flexible muscle tissues that enable a person to move and stretch. In case these muscles are overstretched, overused, or forced to hyperextend, it can cause injury. Medical treatment is required in some cases of hip flexor injury.

The psoas forms a part of the hip flexor muscles and can be strained. The hip flexors connect the top of the femur (which is the largest bone in the body) to the lower back, hips, and groin.
There are different types of hip flexor muscles that work in tandem to allow a person to move, including:

  • The iliacus and psoas: These are major muscles that are also called iliopsoas
  • The rectus femoris: This forms a part of the quadriceps

The overstretching or overuse of these tendons and muscles can cause injury leading to pain and decreased mobility.


Hip Flexor Strain Symptoms

The symptoms of hip flexor strain are as follows:

  • Sudden sharp pain in the pelvis or hip following trauma to the site
  • A clenching or cramping sensation in the muscles of the upper leg region
  • Tenderness and soreness in the upper leg
  • Strength loss in the front of the groin in addition to a tugging sensation
  • Muscle spasms in the thighs or hip
  • Inability to kick, jump, or sprint
  • Decreased mobility and discomfort when moving, including limping
  • Constant pain and discomfort in the upper led region
  • Inflammation and bruising around the thigh or hip area
  • Stiffness or tightness after being stationary, for instance, after sleeping



The hip flexors are engaged when the knees are brought up towards the torso, such as during dancing, running, or performing martial arts.

Athletes who engage the hip flexors in their training and sport are more vulnerable to hip flexor strain which can lead to muscle tears.

Many hip flexor injuries are associated with hamstring strains in sports medicine.



Exercises allow the hip flexors to remain flexible and supple which helps prevents injury.

Inactivity resulting from activities such as sitting for extended periods can lead to tightness in the hip flexors. This can cause pain in the lower back and hip as well as damage and strain to the region.

Hip exercises can strengthen these muscles. A majority of exercises can be performed at home and involve gentle stretches. These can help decrease tension and prevent future or further injury.

Experienced orthopedic surgeon Dr. Tigran Garabekyan of SCHI receives patients from Los Angeles, Century City, CA, and nearby areas for orthopedic surgery.

Dr. Tigran Garabekyan is a board certified orthopedic surgeon specializing in hip preservation. To learn more about Southern California Hip Institute or to schedule a consultation, click here to contact us or call:

Century City / Los Angeles: 310.595.1030

Serving patients in Encino, Sherman Oaks, Van Nuys, North Hollywood, Burbank, Glendale, West Hollywood, Century City, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Los Angeles, and other neighboring cities in the greater Los Angeles, California area.

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Contact Us

Century City

2080 Century Park East Suite 1204
Los Angeles, CA 90067
Tel: 310.595.1030 Fax: 310.582.5619