Saturday, April 05, 2008

Osteitis Pubis

Inflammation of the cartilage disc in the pubic bone.

Since October I have been fighting pain in my groin and abdomonals. Finally, I have found out what the issue is thanks to a friend who Sports Medicine Doctor. I have Osteitis Pubis. Osteitis Pubis is the inflammation of the pubic symphysis; the point where the left and right pubic bones meet at the front of the pelvic girdle. Individuals who are most at risk of Osteitis Pubis are those who participate in running events, especially distance runners. Others who tend to have a high risk of developing Osteitis Pubis include those with rheumatological diseases and expectant mothers. As many of you are aware, I have Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Osteitis Pubis results in pain in the front of the pelvic girdle due to inflammation of the pubic symphysis. The pubic symphysis is a disc of cartilage located between the left and right pubic bones. The pubic symphysis is the point where several muscles from the abdomen and groin attach and contract quite vigorously during exercise. These excessive forces pull on the pubic symphysis and cause an inflammatory response.

The most common symptoms of Osteitis Pubis are pain and tenderness; this pain can be sharp or dull. The onset of pain is usually gradual, and is most commonly located in the front and center of the pubic bone. However, the pain may radiate into the lower abdomen and also down into the groin and thigh.

Osteitis Pubis is predominantly caused by repetitive contraction of the muscles that attach to the pubic bone and the pubic symphysis, and while many things can be attributed to this, they can all be categorized into two main groups: Overload (or training errors); and Biomechanical Inefficiencies.

Frustratingly, Osteitis Pubis can be resistant to treatment and can last between 6 months and two years before symptoms resolve. What does this mean- less running for me and even possibly a lay-off if the pain worsens. However, I do feel that over the last month the pain has become less. What is frustrating is that my groin tightens up so much that my stride shortens and this ends up causing pain across my pelvis. Some days it is worse than others and it seems rather unpredictable as to when it gets irratated.


Anonymous said...

hello my name is Karey Pieper and I play hockey for the University of Calgary. I also have Osteitis pubis and i was just wondering if you could give me some tips on how to heal it, because my injury has bothered me for 5 or 6 years now. thankyou and if you could please email me at

applpumpikn9501 said...

Hi, I have the same thing, but as I am reading up on it I've noticed that its commonaly found with athletes. I'm 33yrs old and ran track when I was in High school I do have 4 kids and my youngest one is 14 mo. Do you know if this is something that will go away or is this permanant. I've taken steroids and it did nothing. If you have any suggestions please let me know. I live in the Seattle,WA area!!!

Anonymous said...

I happened on your site tonight and I need to share with you. My daughter has been suffering with unknown pelvic pain for almost 2 years now since the birth of her last baby. To make a very long story short, we have now found out it is probably osteitis pubis and she is seeing a physician at the Texas Back institute in Dallas Texas that recommends injections that have been shown with research to completely erradicate the pain. Please search under emedicine and osteitis pubis to read more about the treatments. They include 3 tendon injections of lidocaine/dextrose solutions to help the body strengthen the ligaments and cartilege attached to the area. The initial research was conducted on atheletes.

Like you she has RA as well. We are praying for this to work. After 2 years and an abnormally high dose of narcotics we are ready!

I hope you find relief. The pain is unbelievable.

Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Glad to find your site. I've been suffering with pelvic girdle pain for years. The pain worsened five months ago and now radiates into my thighs, hips and glutes. While running I have little to no pain but at night the pain wakes me up out of a sound sleep. I can't sit for more than five minutes. A recent xray shows Osteitis Pubis. I saw an Orthopaedic who said OP cannot cause the pains I'm getting a second opinion on Monday from an Osteopathic Pysiologist. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that he can positively diagnose me.

Anonymous said...

You should definitely look into your problem being two-fold, Osteitis Pubis with SI Joint dysfunction. The pain in the glute, thigh snd hip leads me to believe there is an SI issue too. I know this because I have been suffering with both for 2+ years since my son was born. Why is there not more good info out there to help???

polishbaba said...

Thanks for your comment. I had no SI Joint dysfunction. I had no pain in my glute and thigh. My pain was all pelvic and abdominal.

Anonymous said...

Hi there. Your blog is very informative -- thank you.

I have had osteitis pubis on the left side for nearly 2 years. i have tried cortizone shots, steroid pills heavy PT etc.

Do you or anyone else know who is the absolute best sports medicine doctor in Seattle area that specializes in this?

Also, a specialist in PT for this area. I am seeing a good one, but it's just not getting any better.

I would like to do the hawaii ironman this year, but can't run at all -- not even a block

Any information would be greatly appreciated

thanks a lot!

-Matt--Seattle, WA