Sports injuries in the pelvis and hip: diagnostic imaging

Eur J Radiol. 1998 May;27 Suppl 1:S49-59. doi: 10.1016/s0720-048x(98)00043-6.


We discuss the role of imaging techniques in examining the athletes with sports injuries involving the pelvis and the hip. Pelvis and hip pain is of difficult clinical clarification because of the various athletic injuries which may affect the bone or soft tissues at different anatomic sites. Moreover, the symptoms of pelvis and hip injuries are similar in most cases and they are often diffuse and atypical. Diagnostic imaging can play an essential role because treatment success depends on a correct diagnosis and these techniques can actually differentiate the most frequent causes of pelvis and hip sports injuries such as groin strain, osteitis pubis, ischial intersection syndrome, snapping hip, stress fractures, hernias and avulsion fractures. Finally, we discuss the role of magnetic resonance imaging in detecting the causes of hip pain other than sports injuries, such as avascular necrosis, reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome, herniation pit, acetabular labrum injuries. To conclude, diagnostic imaging techniques currently permit the direct and noninvasive depiction of pelvis and hip conditions. Particularly, magnetic resonance imaging is very helpful in detecting injury site, extent and characteristics; it can also predict the time period an athlete will be disabled and help define the best treatment planning.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Athletic Injuries / diagnosis*
  • Cumulative Trauma Disorders / diagnosis
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Diagnostic Imaging*
  • Fractures, Bone / diagnosis
  • Hip Injuries*
  • Humans
  • Joint Dislocations / diagnosis
  • Pain / etiology
  • Pelvis / injuries*