ZocdocAnswersWhat is this popping sound below my hip?

Question

What is this popping sound below my hip?

I was kicking a soccer ball the other day and heard and felt a pop just below my hip. Now when I'm walking around it does the same thing. What is this sound/feeling below my hip?

Answer

It is not uncommon for certain joints to click or pop, but it always a very unsettling sensation to feel or hear this sort of thing. The hip joint is one of the most stable in the body, so it is unlikely that your actual hip is 'popping' in an out of joint. However, there is a band of connective tissue called the iliotibial band (IT band) that runs along the side of your leg from the hip to the knee and help provides stability for leg movements. The IT band must pass over a bony prominence that is part of the hip joint as it runs down the leg, and as it does so, certain movements of the leg can cause it to 'snap' over the bone. This can often be felt as well as sometimes even heard. From what your describe, this may be the most likely thing causing your symptoms. However, with any kind of joint disturbance it is always a good idea to be evaluated by a physician to make sure that there is nothing more serious requiring further medical intervention or treatment. You should see your primary care physician right away for a history and exam. He or she may want to refer you to an orthopedic specialist depending upon the results of your exam. In the interim, it is also probably a good idea to take it easy and not engage in any strenuous physical activity until you can be cleared by your physician.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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