What is Osteitis Pubis?
Osteitis Pubis is a medical term used todescribe sports-related groin pain.Osteitis means ‘bone inflammation’, whilepubis refers to the specific bone that isaffected: the pubic bone. Osteitis pubis isusually an overuse injury that cansometimes be triggered by a specificevent. It is characterized by pain deepwithin the front of the pubic bone, causedby inflammation. The area of the pubicbone affected is specifically known as the‘pubic symphysis.
This type of injury is common in load-bearing athletes such as runners. Otherpeople commonly affected include soccerplayers and footballers, due to theirfrequent kicking actions.
How does it happen?
Instability within the pelvic region is theprimary cause of Osteitis Pubis,particularly if the instability occurs at theconnection between the two sides of thepubic bones at the front of the body. The pelvis carries the weight of the upper body and is responsible for providingstability when walking, running andkicking. This means that the joint caneasily become irritated and inflamed.
What are the signs and symptoms?
Osteitis pubis is aggravated by weight-bearing activities, with running andkicking being the two main culprits. Painis usually experienced on one side,however, both sides can be affected.The pain is usually located at the front ofthe pelvis and may progress into the hipand groin area as it becomes moresevere.
Sufferers of Osteitis Pubis tend to have ahistory of a previous groin strain, as wellas lower back pain. They may also have ahistory of a sports hernia in the hip area.As with most inflammatory conditions,the pain may be worse when in use,better when resting, and worseovernight into the morning.
How can Physio help?
Your physio can help this condition inseveral ways and will hopefully get youback to your pre-injury sporting level.
During the assessment, your physio willlook at many different things to
determine the cause of the condition.Muscle length, muscle strength andmuscle control will all be assessed. Yourposture in standing, walking andrunning will also be assessed todetermine any irregularities.
Your physio will ask you to rest fromsports for some time to allow somebony healing to occur. They will thenprogress you through a rehab programaimed at getting you back to the sport.
This rehab program will retrain yourmuscles to stabilize the pelvis whenwalking, running and kicking. Themuscles will also need to have relativelyequal flexibility to help stabilize thepelvis. Your physio will give you specificexercises to target the strength andflexibility of these muscles. Finally, yourphysio will progress you to running orkicking, and allow you to graduallyreturn to sport over a 3-to-6-monthperiod.
The information in this newsletteris not a replacement for propermedical advice. Always see amedical professional for anassessment of your condition.