Hip pointer injury is a painful injury to the pelvic bone of the hip (Figure 1). A hip pointer results from either a contusion to the iliac crest (Figure 2) and rarely from avulsion fractures.
Occasionally, a hip pointer may cause an avulsion fracture, where part of the bone is pulled away by the attached muscle.
What are the symptoms of a hip pointer?
The symptoms of hip pointer include obvious bruising and swelling, reduced range of motion, pain and tenderness, and weakness in the hip and leg (Figure 3). X-rays are used to rule out a fracture. A full assessment is necessary to rule out any possibility of an internal organ injury.
What are the causes of hip pointer?
Sports involving collisions with other players such as football, hockey, rugby, etc. may cause hip pointer (Figure 4). Also a direct collision of the hip onto a hard surface may cause it.
Treatment for a hip pointer will include rest, ice, crutches, compression bandages and anti-inflammatory medications. Hip pointer is not a career ending injury. The injury may take several days to weeks to heal, however the patient usually recovers completely.