What is it?
The adductor muscles are a group of five
muscles located on the inside of the thigh that act to move the hip inwards or
control hip movements outwards. These muscles also provide stability to the
pelvis while standing, walking and running. The muscles attach to the pelvis
via the adductor tendon, at the base of the pubic bone. Adductor tendinopathy
is a condition affecting the adductor tendon and is used to refer to the
typical pattern of pain and stiffness in the groin and inner thigh that
accompany this injury.
What are the symptoms?
The hallmark of this condition is pain in the
groin region with movements of the adductor muscles. There may be a feeling of
stiffness, weakness and pain when pressing over the adductor tendon. The pain
usually begins gradually and progresses over time. It may build up over a few
months and may not go away on its own. In severe cases, the pain may impact
day-to-day activities, with pain being present when walking or going up and
down stairs. Tendon tears may occur suddenly, however tendinopathy is often
already present when this happens.
What causes it?
Adductor tendinopathy usually
occurs due to chronic overuse, particularly for runners and athletes whose
sports involve regular changing of directions. Overstretching of the tendon or
an increase in training intensity or type often precede the development of
adductor tendinopathies. It is thought that excess forces over an extended
period of time cause the tendon tissues to degenerate, becoming painful and
more prone to tearing.
What is the
As many different conditions mimic adductor
tendinopathy, accurate diagnosis by a health professional is essential. Certain
conditions such as stress fractures of the hip, nerve entrapment or pathologies
of the hip should first be ruled out.
Adductor tendinopathy is treated by first
identifying factors that may have led to the development of the condition. Your
physiotherapist may recommend a period of rest and suggest that you stop
stretching. Common contributing factors are running technique, muscle tightness
and/or weakness and training frequency.
physiotherapist is able to help you maintain your training program to the
highest level without aggravating your symptoms and help support tendon
healing. They are also able to provide support to unload the tendon along with
manual therapy and an exercise program, particularly with eccentric exercises,
which have been shown to stimulate tendon regeneration.
most cases, conservative or non-surgical treatment is attempted as the first
line of treatment. If this is unsuccessful, cortisone injections are often used
to reduce symptoms. In severe cases where the pain persists despite all other
attempts at treatment, other medical interventions can be attempted. Once the
pain has subsided your physiotherapist is also able to help prevent any further
None of the information in this article is a
replacement for proper medical advice. Always see a medical professional for
advice on your individual injury.