Welcome to the RROC. The goal of our research is to develop effective rehabilitation strategies for people with musculoskeletal hip pain that will improve function and prevent or delay the need for surgical or pharmacological intervention.

The RROC team is committed to conducting clinical, translational research that will improve rehabilitation strategies for people with musculoskeletal hip pain including arthritic and pre-arthritic conditions. Our primary goals are to 1) understand the factors that contribute to pain problems, such as impairments of structure and function and activities and participation (type and intensity) and 2) develop rehabilitation strategies targeting specific movement system impairments and functional activity modifications to improve performance and functional ability.

Current projects implement clinical examination, motion analysis, and imaging to assess impairments of structure and function, as well as self-report questionnaires to quantify activity and participation. In addition, rehabilitation strategies, including movement pattern training, traditional strengthening and flexibility, and joint mobilizations are being tested to determine their effect on improving function and participation in physical activity.

Faculty Investigators

Marcie Harris-Hayes, PT, DPT, MSCI [Profile ]

Megan Burgess, PT, DPT, OCS


Becky DeMargel, PT, DPT
Martha Hessler, BS
Suzanne Kuebler, PT, MPT

Student Members

Lauren Froehlich, DPT Student, Research Assistantship
Payton Price, DPT Student
Cameron Swick, DPT Student, Research Assistantship

Members of the Multidisciplinary Hip Group at Washington University School of Medicine

Current Research Studies

Comparison of Movement Pattern Training and Manual Therapy for Prearthritic Hip Disorders: a Pilot Randomized Clinical Trial (Paris Patla Musculoskeletal Grant from the Foundation for Physical Therapy Research https://foundation4pt.org/)

Pre-arthritic hip disease (PAHD), such as femoroacetabular impingement, hip dysplasia, and labral tears, is a major cause of hip dysfunction and activity limitation in young adults that, without proper management, may progress to hip osteoarthritis (OA). Effective treatment of PAHD is needed to improve function in the young adult and prevent or delay the onset of hip OA. The goal of this project is to compare the effectiveness of movement pattern training and joint mobilization for people with PAHD. Upon completion of this study, we will be positioned to implement a large RCT to assess the efficacy of MoveTrain and ManTher to improve PAHD.

Turning the TiDe – Training Diverse Clinician Scientists in Rehabilitation Research (NIH National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) grant R25HD109110)

The Training in Diversity education program, or TiDe, will transform rehabilitation research culture by educating rehabilitation clinician scientists in the skills and knowledge needed to train and support the next generation of underrepresented clinician scientists with the capacity to advance rehabilitation research.

Assessing Multifactorial Etiology of IC/BPS Using a Novel PFM-Hip-Trunk Muscle Network Analysis (NIH National Institute of Nursing Research grant R21NR020379)

Interstitial cystitis/ bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS), as one of the most debilitating chronic pelvic pain conditions, is intrinsically a multifactorial dysfunction that is attributed to a wide variety of musculoskeletal factors. Unfortunately, no technology is currently available for quantitatively assessing these etiologic factors, which, otherwise, would allow for phenotyping patients for appropriate intervention personalization. This research represents the first effort to comprehensively assess the pelvic floor muscle (PFM) overactivity, hip/trunk muscle activity alteration, PFM-to-Hip/Trunk inter-muscular connectivity, and distinct PFM phenotypic subtypes in IC/BPS.

Past Research Studies

Movement System Impairments in Patients with Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms
(The Foundation for Barnes-Jewish Hospital https://www.foundationbarnesjewish.org/)

Our findings:  

Consensus Recommendations for Hip-Related Pain in Young and Middle-Aged Active Adults. International Hip-related Pain Research Network, Zurich 2018.

Our findings:  

Movement Pattern Training in People with Intra-articular, Prearthritic Hip Disorder (PAHD) (NIH National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR) of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) grant R21HD086644; the Foundation for Physical Therapy Research)

Our findings:  

Rehabilitation Factors in Pre-arthritic Hip Disease (NIH National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke No. K23 HD067343 and K12 HD055931NIH)

Our findings:  

Physical Examination Measures of the Hip (National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke No. K12 HD055931NIH)

Our findings: