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When is a hip brace used? Why hip abduction brace?

When is a hip brace used? Why hip abduction brace?The pelvis (major, minor) generally describes the body section between stomach and legs. The pelvis is a very stable, solid construction and outlines a closed, but not completely stiff bone ring. By means of the sacral bone, this bone ring is connected to the spine, and the pelvis surrounds the pelvic floor like a frame.

The bony pelvis consists of both hip bones - ossa coxae, and together with the sacral bone , it forms the pelvic girdle. Due to its strength and stability, the pelvic girdle provides to the human body steadiness and an upright position.Each of both hip bones consists of three bony parts: the ilium bone , the seat bone  and the pubic bone . These three bones merge after reaching adolescence age, and then build the uniform hip bone in the hip joint socket - acetabular cup. Looking at the shape of the pelvis, distinct gender gaps are noticeable. While the male pelvis is rather high and narrow, the female pelvis tends to be low and rather wider.

Popular Hip Disorders

The hip joint - articulatio coxae is a spheroidal joint and can be moved three-dimensionally. The upper thigh bone - femur and the pelvis herein consitute the bony joint-duo.The hip joint's three main directions of motion are: Flexing / extending  (flexion - extension). Spreading / tightening (abduction / adduction). Rotating outside / inside (outer - inner rotation). In order to provide frictionless motion at the contact surfaces of the hip joint, the joint parts of the femur head and the joint socket are covered with a very smooth and thick cartilage layer. The joint mucous membrane constantly produces joint fluid (synovia),which lubricates the joint, protects it from shocks as well as nourishes it at the same time.

Next to the numerous hip - and thigh muscles,an enormous ligament construction holds the femoral head  in the hip socket - acetabulum. The most important and strongest ligament of the human body is the Os ilium thigh ligament,  which has a tensile strength of approx. 350 kg.

Hip dysplasia and hip dislocation

Hip dysplasia is an infantile maturing disorder with growth disturbance of the acetabulum roof. Without early therapy or use of proper orthopaedic aids, the femoral head can move out of the acetabulum dislocation and develop to a hip luxation.Hip disorders are caused by the human upright position. While walking on two legs, the rear upper parts of the hip joint - acetabulum roof, are under increased strain. Due to the genderspecific differences in the shape of the pelvis, girls suffer from hip disorders 4 times more often than boys.

Hip dysplasia & Hip dislocation - Treatment

Depending on the degree of the dysplasia, subluxation or luxation, there are different therapy methods.Conservative measures should be exploited before considering an extensive surgery. Therefore, the treatment should start as early as possible with a hip abduction support (harness) therapy. The prior
therapy principles are to reduce load on the hip joint and a rather gentle, functional treatment by keeping the child in a sitting - squatting position.

Therapy aim:

  1. To bring the femoral head into straight position in the acetabulum.
  2. To take tension off the capsule vessels.
  3. To allow the acetabulum roof to post-mature.

Hip joint arthrosis

The most common hip disorder among adults resp. older persons is the hip joint arthrosis.Depending on age, the cartilage layer of the hip joint degenerates. Without the protecting cartilage layer, the hip joint looses it's flexibility and in the course of time, deforms under the load of the own body weight. Next to pain therapy, further conservative treatments are applied to relief the pain caused by the arthrosis.

Hip arthrosis - Treatment

The pain in the hip joint can be relieved by wearing soft, shock-absorbing shoes and insoles /silicone heel cups/ and specific exercise to strengthen the muscles, e. g. swimming or riding a bicycle.Unfortunately, the degenerous effects cannot be healed. Existing severe hip joint arthrosis (coxarthrosis) most likely will require replacement by an artificial joint. Among others, nowadays there are minimally invasive surgery methods, during which a hip endoprosthesis  is implanted.

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