It is very common to experience left side pain above hip. It might be really confusing when pain in this area occurs as it can indicate a number of different conditions. The pain may be different among separate individuals. Itself may be chronic or just episodical and may range from mild to very severe one.
Left side pain above hip can be caused by different conditions, hence, this causes dependent on various organs. However, the location of your left hip is a region that contains very vital body organs. There is also a misconception on the location of the left hip by many which make exact pain region difficult.
The Location of Your Left Hip
It may be surprising that many people do not know the location of their left hip. They believe it is the upper part of their pelvic bone, which is the bony area at the lower part of the abdomen. Others believe that their hip is the broadest part of their torso.
However, according to the anatomical structure, a hip is located much lower, in front of and the side of the buttocks.
Also at the point where the femur joins with your pelvic bone, which is also known as the hip joint. Generally, it may be correct that the area above your hip is your lower abdomen.
The left hip area is also known as the lower left quadrant of the abdomen. This body region is where various important organs are located. Such organs are left ureter, descending and sigmoid colon, and in case of women left the ovary and fallopian tube.
Therefore, pain above your left hip may be caused by a number of different factors mentioned earlier. It may be due to some abnormalities in the hip structure or improper functioning of one of the mentioned organs.
Symptoms of Left Side Pain Above Hip
The sensations felt above the left hip may be different among individuals. This can also depend on the underlying cause of the problem. With this, you may experience a sharp and stabbing type of pain in your hip bone, which may radiate to your leg and knee.
You may have a tingling sensation experience or numbness in your left leg if the nerves in the hip area affected. However, burning sensation and pain in your left hip and leg when you move may also be felt in the case of inflammation
You may feel discomfort when walking due to the tenderness of the region above your left hip. The pain usually starts within the lower back hip. Soreness in your groin and lower abdomen, and middle back may also be felt due to kidney stone.
The Causes of Left Side Pain Above Hip
Left side Pain above hip can really be very discomforting, hence, creating a worrisome situation due to difficulties in walking. In order to determine the major cause of pain above the left hip, the nature of pain needs to be observed. It will enable you to know whether it is mild or severe, chronic or incidental. Also, examine if apart from the pain, you experience other symptoms too.
Some of the underlying causes of left side pain above hip include:
1. Hip Dislocation
In case of pain above your left hip due to a fall or car accident, it’s likely your hip is dislocated. Hip dislocation means that the femur head of your thighbone slipped out of the hip joint. The injury such as this may cause great pain and even the inability to move. In some cases, a dislocated hip might damage the surrounding nerves too.
Whereby you may have had an accident recently and suspects a hip dislocation due to the pain experience, kindly see a doctor. This will enable the doctor to refer you for an x-ray, in order to confirm the injury and it’s severity.
2. Hip Bursitis
Hip bursitis may be known as inflammation and swell within the sac filled with fluid between the ligament or tendons and the bone. This situation leads to pain as a result of reduced friction between the structures while moving.
However, there are a few types of hip bursitis, but the most common one is trochanteric bursa. This affects the outside part of the upper hip mainly. It is usually caused by an injury or some repetitive movement excessive friction. If your hip pain is caused by this type of hip bursitis, then the pain will probably spread. It can spread from your hip area to the outer part of your thigh.
3. Abdominal Wall
Maybe you feel that pain above your left hip does not come from the inside, but is superficial, it may suggest some problems. However, this problem may be with your abdominal wall. They usually result from a strain or injury to the soft tissue, such as fascia, skin, muscles, or fat.
4. Kidney Infection.
Kidney infection, especially on the left side, can cause dull or serious lower back pain. Infection in the kidney often starts in the urinary tract and bladder. It can spread to the kidneys from there, causing local inflammation and pain in the kidney. Some symptoms of this include fever, nausea and/or vomiting, and painful or stinging urination. Pain is usually felt next to the spine above the hip, and in most cases worsens with movement or pressure.
5. Kidney Stones.
A kidney stone can cause left back pain if stone resides inside the left kidney. Pain can also occur when the stone moves through the ureters, thin tubes connecting the kidneys to the bladder. Other symptoms include pain with urination, difficulty urinating despite a persistent need to do so, blood in the urine, and nausea and vomiting.
6. Gynecological Disorders.
There are two gynecological disorders in women that can cause lower back pain which is fibroids and endometriosis. Pain from endometriosis is usually sporadic, sharp and stabbing, and is caused by excess uterine tissue growing outside the uterus.
Other symptoms may include abdominal pain, fatigue, and severe pain with menstruation. Usually, fibroid starts growing in the uterus and can cause lower left back pain. It can as well cause abnormal menstruation, frequent urination, and pain with intercourse.
7. Ulcerative Colitis.
Ulcerative Colitis is an inflammatory bowel disease. It is characterized by persistent inflammation mostly in the large intestine, also called the colon. This inflammation usually causes chronic digestive issues like diarrhea, rectal pain, and weight loss. A major symptom is abdominal cramping which causes sharp back and abdominal pain on one or both sides of the body.
Left Side Hip Bone Pain During Pregnancy
Left side hip bone pain is common with pregnant women. Though of course, pregnancy pelvic pain can also affect the right side of the hip.
According to Doctors from the National Health Service, pain around the hip bones during pregnancy is called pregnancy-related pelvic girdle pain. This can cause painful symptoms in the hips, lower back, groin, or the top of the thighs. Some other reasons for left side hip bone during pregnancy affecting your pelvis may include:
- The position of your baby
- The weight of the growing baby pushes on the hip bone and stretches abdominal muscles
- The hormone relaxin is released which affects the joints in the pelvis.
Causes of Left Side Pain Above Hip That Affect Women Only
Lower left abdominal pain can only affect women. Mostly, this condition may be more serious or needs immediate medical attention. Pain can also develop on the right side of your abdomen in these cases.
Some of the cases include:
1. Menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea)
During and after the menstrual period in women cramps usually. More so, the pain can range from a minor one to a pain that affects your daily activities, though menstrual cramps usually aren’t serious.
However, you need to see your doctor if the following event:
- If your cramps interfere with your daily activities
- When symptoms get worse over time
- In the case, you are older than age 25 and your cramps have started to get more severe
Endometriosis can cause a situation where tissue that usually lines the inside of the uterus to grows outside of the uterus. This, in turn, can cause abdominal pain and lead to infertility.
Some of the symptoms are:
- Having pain with sex
- Painful menstrual cramps that may get worse with time
- Heavy menstrual flows
- Pain in bowel movements or urination
- Spotting between periods
The cause of endometriosis is unknown. It’s time to see your doctor when your symptoms are severe and affects your daily activities.
3. Ovarian cyst
An ovarian cyst is a sac filled with fluid inside or on the surface of an ovary. These are part of a woman’s normal menstrual cycle.
Most cysts don’t produce symptoms and go away without treatment in a few months. A large cyst can cause discomfort. It may also press on your bladder and cause you to urinate more often.
A cyst that ruptures (breaks open) can cause some serious problems, such as severe pain or internal bleeding.
It is important to see your doctor or get medical help right away if you’re experiencing:
- Sudden, severe abdominal pain
- Pain with fever or vomiting
- Signs of shock, such as cold and clammy skin, rapid breathing, lightheadedness, or weakness
4. Ovarian torsion
Large ovarian cysts may cause the ovary to change position in a woman’s body. This raises the risk of ovarian torsion, a painful twisting of the ovary that can cut off the blood supply. The fallopian tubes may also be affected.
Ovarian torsion is more likely to happen with pregnancy or the use of hormones to promote ovulation.
Ovarian torsion isn’t common. When it does happen, it’s usually during a woman’s reproductive years. See your doctor if you feel a sudden severe pain in your abdomen with vomiting. Surgery is often needed to untwist the ovary or remove it.
5. Ectopic pregnancy
With an ectopic pregnancy, a fertilized egg implants itself before it reaches the uterus. This usually happens inside the fallopian tubes connecting the ovary to the uterus. You may or may not have symptoms with an ectopic pregnancy.
In addition to abdominal pain, symptoms can include:
- A missed period and other pregnancy signs
- Vaginal bleeding
- Watery discharge
- Discomfort with urination or bowel movements
- Shoulder pain at the tip
See your doctor if you have these symptoms and you believe you may be pregnant, even if your pregnancy test is negative and it’s still very early.
How to Get Relief from Left Side Pain Above the Hip
Applying a hot or cold compress on the painful left hip area can help to relieve the pain and increase joint movement in your left leg.
This is according to Dr. Carol DerSarkissian of WebMD who advises when to use cold therapy and when to use heat therapy for hip joint pain.
Cold therapy. Cold helps to reduce inflammation in sore hip joints and can also alleviate pain from a pinched nerve. It is good for arthritic conditions and other inflammatory pain in your left hip area.
Heat therapy. Use heat to help increase circulation to the painful area above your left hip joint. Heat therapy helps to relax muscles and can help ease abdominal cramping, herniated discs, or chronic back pain.
To find out how to make your own heat treatment compresses, please read my article on how to use cold or heat therapy for pain relief.
Left Side Pain Above Hip – Wrap Up
Obviously, left side pain above hip can be discomforting. But proper education and medical care you can get over it easily. So, follow the steps listed above and if pain continues then visit a doctor.