Do non-operative treatments like physical therapy work for labral tears?

We use several non-operative treatments for the hip, including medications, physical therapy, and injections.

The most common medications used for hip disorders are anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen or naproxen. These medications reduce pain by decreasing the inflammation within the hip and surrounding tissues. Some patients take glucosamine and chondroitin supplements and ask if these will help their hip. There is no evidence that these supplements will significantly reduce hip pain, but there is also little research in this area.

Physical therapy is commonly used for hip disorders. Physical therapy will not cure a labral tear or bony abnormality but can help to reduce symptoms. Your physical therapist can help reduce inflammation around the hip and can teach you exercises to strengthen the hip muscles. The therapist can also help identify movements that exacerbate or worsen your hip symptoms. Physical therapy does not help in every case: a good rule of thumb is if it hurts, don’t do it.

Active Release Therapy or ART is a specialized type of therapy that combines physical therapy and deep massage techniques. This can be particularly helpful in hip disorders because the hip is surrounded by several layers of muscle, which can contribute to hip pain. ART may be used before or after surgery.

Posted in: Information About Hip Conditions