ZocdocAnswersCan wearing high heels result in hip problems?

Question

Can wearing high heels result in hip problems?

Both hips are hurting and I wonder if it's because of my heels. I am 27. What else could it be?

Answer

Although most commonly high heels are thought of as causing pain in the feet, they are actually a common cause of pain all up and down the legs (knees, hips, ankles, feet) as well as lower back. This is because high heels force the body to stand and walk in a position that does causes misalignment and strain. This can lead to cramping and spasm of muscle groups. Also, it can increase the pressure on major joints such as the knee or the hip, which may under some circumstances predispose a person to developing premature arthritis. In other words, if you are wearing high heels and you have leg or hip or knee pain, then you should stop. If after a few days or weeks of strictly wearing only flat heeled shoes, the pain goes away, then you know what the cause was. Then, you would need to avoid high heels permanently. If, however, the pain does not improve, or if you notice any other concerning symptoms, such as numbness or tingling in your thighs or legs, weakness in your legs, or worsening low back pain, you should talk to your primary care doctor as these may be a sign of a worse problem.

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

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.