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Rupture of the Iliopsoas Muscle-Tendon Unit

Rupture of the iliopsoas muscle-tendon unit is rare; it occurs usually in the muscle-tendon junction or at the tendon insertion at the lesser trochanter, and sometimes with avulsion of a bony fragment.

Symptoms and diagnosis

– Pain occurs suddenly, like a stab in the groin, and returns as soon as the injured athlete tries to flex the hip joint.
– When rupture is partial, deep pain is felt at the iliopsoas insertion into the inner aspect of the femur when the hip joint is flexed against resistance.
– Swelling and local tenderness may be present at the tendon insertion.
– A definite weakness in flexion of the hip joint is apparent in cases of total rupture.
– Sometimes a bone fragment may be torn away, so an X-ray examination is required, particularly in a growing individual.


– A partial rupture of the muscle-tendon unit should be treated in the same way as a rupture of the adductor muscles.
– Complete rupture of the iliopsoas muscle requires surgery.

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