Due to the sudden twists and turns when playing football, as well as the repetitive nature of running it is common for footballers to experience hip and knee pain.
4 common injuries to the hip and knee are:
Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injury
The ACL connects the thighbone to the shinbone, stabilising the knee joint, and is a common injury in footballers due to quick twists and turns of the body.
Symptoms include difficulty bearing weight on the knee, swelling of the knee and pain and ‘popping’ in the knee.
ACL reconstruction surgery can be carried out via a minimally invasive approach, and consists of taking tissue from somewhere else in your body, or from a donor, to replace the damaged ligament.
The meniscus is cartilage between the shinbone and thighbone that absorbs shock. It can be injured through sudden twisting and turning of the knee.
Symptoms include sudden knee pain, swelling and difficulty bending or extending the knee.
Treatment can involve surgery to repair the damaged tissue, or surgery to replace the whole meniscus.
Hip labral tear
Hip labral tear is a tear to the cartilage holding the ball and socket of the hip together. This can be caused by repetitive fast changes in direction when running.
Symptoms involve pain and instability in the hip.
Surgery is usually performed via a hip arthroscopy and consists of stitching the torn tissue back together or reconfiguring the damaged tissue with tissue from elsewhere in your body, or from a donor.
Osteoarthritis is when the cartilage that protects the hip joint wears over time as you age or if you are particularly active. It is not unusual for football players to develop hip osteoarthritis due to repetitive vigorous hip movement.
Symptoms include joint pain, difficulty walking and stiffness in the hip.
Hip replacement surgery can repair or replace the damaged hip joint with a prosthetic joint.