Snapping Hip Syndrome (SHS), known also as Clicking Hip or Coxa Saltans is a disorder of the hip that results in noise on movement and sometimes pain.

Snapping Hip

What is Snapping Hip Syndrome?

This term refers to clicking, snapping or clunking sensations arising around the hip joint. There are many possible causes. One of the commonest is cavitation – the formation of a vacuum in the hip joint, with a resultant popping sensation – this is the same phenomenon that causes cracking of the knuckles. Other potential causes are a torn hip labrum and tendons or scar tissue passing over a bony prominence.


What are the symptoms of Snapping Hip Syndrome (SHS)?

The commonest symptoms are a click, clunk or snap arising from the hip. If a tight band of scar tissue rubs over the bony prominence on the outside of the hip, some people can worry that their hip is popping out of the joint (dislocating). Of course, to dislocate your own natural hip is very unusual and usually requires a large amount of energy such as a car crash. There may or may not be pain associated with the clicking/clunking/snapping sensation.


How is Snapping Hip Syndrome (SHS) diagnosed?

As there are many potential causes, a detailed discussion and examination with a specialist is required. X-rays, an MRI scan or an ultrasound scan may be advised to confirm the diagnosis.


How is Snapping Hip Syndrome (SHS) treated?

If there is no pain, then no treatment may be necessary. If the symptoms are painful or distracting then depending on the cause, a course of physiotherapy, injections or keyhole surgery may be offered.

If you or someone you know has suffered an injury or is experiencing pain in their hip or difficulty with mobility and would like a consultant-led review, please contact us. Grosvenor Orthopaedics have extensive experience in the treatment of SHS with excellent patient outcomes.