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Common Symptoms of a Sports Hernia
Common Symptoms of a Sports Hernia

Athletes who use their bodies with a lot of explosive movements and twisting are susceptible to groin injuries, which can be hard to diagnose. Football, soccer and hockey players are especially vulnerable to groin injuries, and sports hernias. Groin injuries including sports hernias are common in athletes who put a lot of strain on the core muscles. The core muscles involved in these types of injuries are usually the lower abdominals, obliques, and adductor muscles.

A sports hernia, also known as a core muscle injury, is a strain or tear of a muscle, tendon, or ligament located in the groin region. A sports hernia can be difficult to diagnose due to the similarity of symptoms of other conditions. A traditional hernia is not the same as a sports hernia. A traditional hernia occurs when an organ pushes through a weakness in a muscle or other tissues. The term “sports hernia” is somewhat misleading, as it is not a hernia at all.

Sports hernias commonly occur in sports that involve sudden stop-and-go movements, twisting and turning, rapid acceleration, and sudden change of direction. Symptoms can come on suddenly, or can happen gradually, and can ease when at rest. Pain can resume when returning to play.

Common symptoms of a sports hernia include:

  • Pain in the groin region that can radiate down the inner thighs and toward the testicles
  • Lower abdominal pain
  • Pain when kicking, twisting, or turning
  • Pain when coughing or sneezing
  • Pain that’s difficult to pinpoint the exact location
  • Pain that comes and goes
  • Pain and stiffness lead to limited mobility

Sports hernias are commonly mistaken for other groin-related injuries, and can be hard to diagnose. The Hip Preservation and Groin Center is highly specialized in sports medicine for groin-related injuries. Let us help you or a loved one make the ultimate comeback.

AUTHOR: Srino Bharam MD, MBA is a board-certified, fellowship-trained sports medicine orthopedic surgeon and professor of orthopedic surgery specializing in the treatment of athletic injuries of the hip and groin. Dr. Bharam has over 20 years of experience in treating injuries and conditions of the hip with the goal of restoring athletes and patients to an active lifestyle.

  • American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
  • Arthroscopy Association of North America
  • International Society for Hip Arthroscopy
  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • Ambra Health