Many clinicians find it difficult to differentiate between symptoms caused by a spine disorder or a hip disorder. If surgery is indicated, the order in which these operations take place is an important factor in the patient's long-term outcome. A prospective evaluation and retrospective chart review of patients with lower extremity pain was performed at the principal investigator's clinic to determine which signs and symptoms best predict the primary source of pain in patients with hip and spine disorders. Medical histories, physical examinations, and diagnostic tests were done on 97 patients with lower extremity pain to determine which signs and symptoms were the best predictors of a primary source of the pain (a hip or a spine disorder). The presence of a limp, groin pain, or limited internal rotation of the hip significantly predicted the diagnosis of a disorder as originating primarily from the hip, as opposed to originating from the spine. Patients with a limp were seven times more likely to have a hip disorder only or a hip and spine disorder than a spine only disorder. Similarly, patients with groin pain or limited internal rotation of the hips were seven and 14 times, respectively, more likely to have a hip disorder only or a hip and spine disorder than a spine only disorder. These variables are of primary importance to the clinician when making a differential diagnosis between hip disease and spine disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine