Is it possible to have a “frozen” hip? I’ve had a frozen shoulder before and now my hip feels just like that shoulder did.



Yes, in fact the first study of nine cases of “frozen hip” or hip adhesive capsulitis has just been reported. All but one of the patients was a middle-aged woman. This is typical of shoulder adhesive capsulitis, too.

Patients had pain and loss of motion in a particular pattern that identifies the capsule as the source of the problem. X-rays and MRIs were normal, making the diagnosis more difficult.

Treatment was with surgical manipulation. Under anesthesia, the hip is gently forced through the full range of motion. Adhesions are torn in the process without injuring the hip. Patients were able to recover full motion and function.

A year later they were still doing well. The author thinks with early diagnosis physical therapy to restore full joint motion may be all that’s needed. Get an early start while you can — check with your doctor or therapist as soon as possible about your hip.