Class IV Low Level laser Treatments For Hip Pain


The hip joint is the largest ball and socket joint present in the human body. It is designed to combat motion, wear and tear. Pain in the hip region can be enervating. Since the hip joint is the fulcrum of most of our body movements, injury to this region can result in serious consequences. Walking, bending, and running, climbing stairs seems to be a herculean task with a hip injury.

The most common causes of hip pain include:

  • Injury to the hip area resulting in dislocation of the hip joint, fracture, hip labral tear, sprains and strains.
  • Arthritis
  • Herniated disc, sciatica, spinal stenosis.
  • Injury to the iliotibial band (IT band).
  • Inflammation of the bursa, trauma, tendonitis.
Hip muscles model labeled

Anatomy of the Hip

The hip is the largest ball and socket joint that connects the leg to the torso. The femur, popularly known as the thigh bone fits into the acetabulum or the socket. Cartilage helps in preventing friction between the acetabulum and the thighbone. The movement of the hip joint is influenced by several muscles which are attached to the bones. The most common muscles are the "glute" muscles which are attached to the back of our hip bones. The glutes are attached to the trochanter. The topmost layer of these muscles is attached to the iliotibial band (IT band). The Iliotibial band is a tough group of fibers that run on the outside of the leg. It begins at the hip and runs down the leg to the knee. Injury to the IT band is a major cause of hip pain.

Conventional Medications for Hip Pain

The conventional medicines for treating hip pain include NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), bisphosphonates, COX-2 inhibitors, steroid injections and analgesics. The commonly used NSAIDs are Ibuprofen, Naproxen, Ketoprofen, Nabumetone. The most widely used COX-2 inhibitor is Celecoxib. The commonly prescribed analgesics are Acetaminophen, Tramadol. These conventional medicines have adverse side effects such as:

  • NSAIDS are often associated with irritating of the stomach lining, ulcers and triggering kidney problems.
  • Pain killers can trigger allergic reactions or make breathing difficult.
  • Pain killers usually slow the heart rate and blood pressure could drop significantly.
  • Steroidal injections cause infections, local fat atrophy, and rupture of tendons.

Cold Laser Therapy Treatments


Photons of light from lasers penetrate into tissue and accelerate cellular growth and reproduction. Laser therapy increases the energy available to the cell so it can work faster, better, and quickly get rid of waste products. When cells of tendons, ligaments, and muscles are exposed to laser light they repair and heal faster.


Laser light increases collagen production by stimulating fibroblasts. Collagen is the building block of tissue repair and healing. Laser therapy increases fibroblast activity and therefore collagen production to speed healing.


Low level laser therapy decreases scar tissue formation. Scar tissue can be a source of chronic pain and poor healing. By eliminating excessive scar tissue and encouraging proper collagen production, painful scars and chronic pain is reduced.


Laser therapy causes vasodilatation (increases size of capillaries) which increases blood flow. The treatments also increases lymphatic drainage to decrease swelling or edema. Therefore, laser therapy reduces swelling caused by bruising or inflammation while speeding the recovery process.


Cold laser therapy decreases pain by blocking pain signals to the brain. Some nerve cells sense pain and send signals to the brain. Chronic pain can be caused by overly active pain nerves. Specific wavelengths help "shut off" the pain signals, thereby; eliminating your pain.

Low level lasers are excellent at decreasing inflammation, which also increases pain nerve activity. Cold laser therapy also increases endorphins and enkephalins, which block pain signals and decrease pain sensation. Overall laser therapy reduces painful nerve signals and reducing your perceived pain.


Blood carries nutrients and building blocks to the tissue, and carries waste products away. Increased blood flow to tissues increases and enhances cellular healing. Cold laser therapy increases the formation of capillaries in damaged tissue. Specific laser frequency also increases blood flow to the area treated, to enhance injury repair.


Low level lasers increases enzyme activity to improve metabolic activity that affects cell repair and regeneration. The enzymes are turned on "high" to speed the healing.


Nerves heal very slowly. Lasers speed up this process. Damage to nerves causes numbness, pain, muscle weakness, and altered sensations. Laser therapy treatments enhance nerve function, healing, and reduce pain.


ATP is like gasoline for cells, it is the energy source that cells operate. Injured cells often have low levels of ATP, which decreases their ability to heal and repair. By increasing ATP and "gasoline storage levels," cells have more ATP for healing and repair. Increased mitochondrial production is very important with nerve pain.


Low level laser therapy decreases trigger points and stimulates acupuncture points to decrease muscle and joint pain.

We combine low level laser therapy with a variety of techniques and treatments. Cold laser therapy can be used alone as a single treatment modality, or in conjunction with other Chiropractic, Physical Therapy, massage therapy, or medical treatments.

Conservative Treatments

GT therapy

Therapeutic treatments for addressing soft tissue injuries involve massage therapy, manual therapy, trigger point therapy, Graston Technique, or Active Release Technique. These treatments increase blood flow, decrease muscle spasms, enhance flexibility, speed healing, and promote proper tissue repair.

When these treatments are incorporated into a treatment plan patients heal faster and are less likely to have long-term pain or soft tissue fibrosis or scar tissue in the injured muscle. These soft tissue treatments are incorporated with therapeutic exercise and flexibility programs.

Medical Treatments

NSAIDs are often prescribed for the initial acute injury stages. In severe cases that involve multiple joint regions, muscle relaxers or oral steroids can be given. Trigger point injections, botox, or steroid injections can be treatment options. Pain management is not usually required unless stronger medications or joint injections are required for treatment.

MRI and X-rays will not usually be ordered to evaluate mild to moderate muscle, tendon, and ligament injuries. Severe cases may utilize advanced imaging to rule out bone fractures, edema, nerve entrapments, tendon or muscle ruptures. NCV testing may be utilized in cases that also involve muscle, sensory, or reflex loss.

Sciatica is the term for radiating pain down the leg. Most commonly it comes from the back and radiates down the leg. Several back injuries and nerve entrapment injuries can cause sciatic pain in the leg. The pain patterns from a lumbar disc, lumbar joint sprain, sacroiliac sprain, or piriformis syndrome produces different patterns of radiating pain than trigger points. Proper identification of the pain pattern, along with reproduction of pain from palpation of trigger points allows the provider and patient to feel comfortable with the diagnosis.

Low back Injuries are commonly associated with poor joint stabilization in the foot, knee, or hip. This leads to poor alignment and excessive forces being placed onto muscles and tendons. Knee injuries and patella tendonitis are common with low back pain because of weakness and poor stabilization of the leg and hip muscles. Combination of muscle weakness, poor coordination, and altered gait mechanics place excessive stress on the knee, hip, and back. Knee pain treatments improve chronic knee and low back pain.

Your chiropractor, physical therapist, occupational therapist, or physician will evaluate your condition and make a proper diagnosis and treatment recommendations. Ask them any questions you might have about your injury.

Chiropractic Adjustments

chiropractic manipulation treatments

Chiropractic manipulation treatments increase the movement of a joint complex. With injury, poor posture, sprains, and strains, muscles tighten up and the joints can become locked up. This lack of movement is felt when you can not look over your shoulder without feeling pulling, dull pain, or a twinge of pain. Mildly stuck joints can be loosened up in the day with stretching and range of motion exercises. Moderately stuck joints often need a little help to restore their normal motion with chiropractic adjustments. Severely stuck joints cause a person pain whenever they put pressure upon the joint or try and move the joint complex.

There are multiple ways to get a joint moving again. The most important part is that the joint is moving in its proper range of motion and without pain. Many people think chiropractors only perform manual manipulation. Most likely their first experience with a chiropractic was years ago, and manual manipulation was the most common form of treatment. Over time and with technology, treatments have changed with the same goal of getting neck joints moving. Learn more about types of chiropractic adjustments.


The lower extremity works as a comprehensive unit performing many of the repetitive tasks at home, work, and recreational sports. Injuries to one area of the musculature often indicate that additional damage has been incurred by other muscles.

wobble board squatting two feet

Many therapeutic exercises can help restore proper strength and endurance to the leg muscles muscles. Isometric exercises are often the initial treatment exercises. Followed by single plane rubber band exercises for hip, knee, and ankle; flexion, extension, adduction, abduction, circumduction, inversion, and eversion. Dynamic exercises involving stability foam, rubber discs, exercise ball, and BOSU balls can be performed on the floor. The more unstable of the surface the more effort and stabilization is required of all the lower extremity muscles.

Vibration plates enhance neuromuscular learning throughout the ankle, knee, foot, hip, and back muscles. Additional strength exercises can be found on the hip, knee, and foot strengthening pages. More information for injuries and treatments for knee pain and foot pain.

Our Chandler, AZ Chiropractic & Physical Therapy clinic treats patients with a variety of muscle, tendon, joint, and ligament injuries. The clinic provides treatment for runners, tri-athletes, and weekend warriors in addition to common headache, neck, and back patients traditionally seen in Chiropractic, Physical Therapy, Massage Therapy clinics. We work with all ages and abilities of the residents in Phoenix, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, and Chandler AZ.