Snapping Hip Syndrome (Iliopsoas Tendonitis)

Snapping hip syndrome (iliopsoas tendonitis) occurs when the deep hip flexor tendon of the iliopsoas muscle, which crosses over the hip socket, becomes irritated or inflamed. During movements that require a bent-over position (or the knees coming up toward the chest), the tendon can catch or rub across the joint, causing painful clicking that can be felt and sometimes heard. This condition often occurs in overuse injuries from activities that require repeated bending or from improper walking biomechanics.


  • Snapping or clicking in your hip
  • Painful clicking during certain hip movements


There are nonsurgical and surgical treatment options available for snapping hip syndrome (iliopsoas tendonitis). Both treatment types are performed by our hip specialists at Orthopaedic Specialists. 

Nonsurgical Treatments

Mild cases of snapping hip syndrome may be treated with rest, anti-inflammatories, a cortisone injection, and/or therapy to improve walking biomechanics. Your physical therapist may recommend stretching exercises for the IT band (iliotibial band) and piriformis muscles. While nonsurgical treatment can relieve mild cases of the condition, surgery may be necessary if it continues to worsen.

Surgical Treatment

Hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive method of relieving snapping hip syndrome. During surgery, one of our experienced orthopaedic surgeons will make a small incision near the hip joint through which an arthroscope, or small video camera, is inserted to allow your surgeon to view the surgery on a monitor. Special instrumentation is used to remove the damaged, torn labrum that may be contributing to the clicking and catching of the tight tendons surrounding the hip. This technique results in smaller incisions, less scarring, less pain, and faster recovery than traditional open surgical procedures.