Pain control

Take painkillers as advised or prescribed. As the hip is a weight-bearing joint, it is important to give it enough rest to allow any inflammation/pain to gradually settle, therefore:

  • Use a stick or crutches if pain causes any limping. Walking should still be for short periods, frequently throughout the day putting as much pressure as is comfortable through the affected leg. Use normal ‘heel toe’ pattern
  • Do not stand for long periods
  • When sitting, use high firm chairs that are easy to get up from
  • Local heat or cold can often ease some of the joint pain or inflammation

Make up either
a. a ‘heat pack’ by wrapping a filled hot water bottle in a towel (not boiling water); or
b. an ‘ice pack’ by placing crushed ice cubes in a damp tea towel. Ensure the ice does not touch the skin to avoid a burn.

Place a or b over the outside part of the hip joint. Directly on the skin and leave it for approximately 20 minutes, every 2 hours.


Start movements of the hip and knee from the first day of injury (unless specifically instructed to do so by a doctor or physiotherapist).
Do exercises 1–5 times every few hours.

Exercise 1
Lying on your back. Bend your leg and bring your knee towards your chest.

Exercise 2
Stand straight holding onto a chair. Bring your leg backwards keeping your knee straight. Do not lean forwards.

Exercise 3
Stand straight holding onto a support. Lift your leg sideways and bring it back keeping your trunk straight throughout the exercise.

Exercise 4
Sit with knees and feet together. Bring your feet apart with heels leading and toes turned in. Return to starting position.

Exercise 5
Lying with your knees bent and feet on the floor hip width apart. Turn the soles of your feet to face each other and allow your knees to fall forward. Feel the stretch in your groin. Keep your back flat on the floor during the exercise.

Exercise 6
Try to spend 10 minutes twice a day either lying completely flat on your back or flat on your front. This prevents your hip from becoming stiff in a bent position.

In a small number of cases – less than 5% patients, who have a normal initial  X-ray may still have a fracture in their hip. For this reason, if you are still in significant pain or unable to walk after 3–4 days please contact your GP or return to the Emergency Department for further assessment.

If you need this information in another format, please telephone: 01935 384 256

Ref- 07-17-117
Review- 03/19