Hip strength in females with and without patellofemoral pain

J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2003 Nov;33(11):671-6. doi: 10.2519/jospt.2003.33.11.671.


Study design: Cross-sectional.

Objectives: To determine if females with anterior knee pain are more likely to demonstrate hip abduction or external rotation weakness than a similar, asymptomatic, age-matched control group.

Background: Diminished hip strength has been implicated as being contributory to lower-extremity malalignment and patellofemoral pain. The identification of reliable and consistent patterns of weakness in this population may assist health care professionals establish a more effective treatment plan.

Methods and measures: Hip abduction and external rotation isometric strength measurements were recorded for the injured side of 15 female subjects with patellofemoral joint pain (mean +/- SD age, 15.7 +/- 2.7 years; age range, 12-21 years). These were compared with strength measurements from the corresponding hip of 15 age-matched female control subjects (mean +/- SD age, 15.7 +/- 2.7 years; age range, 12-21 years). All strength measurements were made using hand-held dynamometers.

Results: Subjects with patellofemoral pain demonstrated 26% less hip abduction strength (P<.001) and 36% less hip external rotation strength (P<.001) than similar age-matched controls.

Conclusions: The results indicate that young women with patellofemoral pain are more likely to demonstrate weakness in hip abduction as well as external rotation than age-matched women who are not symptomatic.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Bone Malalignment
  • Control Groups
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Hip / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Isometric Contraction / physiology*
  • Joint Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Knee Joint / physiopathology*
  • Muscle Weakness / complications
  • Muscle Weakness / physiopathology*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiology
  • Osteoarthritis, Hip / physiopathology
  • Pain / etiology
  • Pain / physiopathology*
  • Pain Measurement