Proximal hamstring tears are uncommon injuries, but when they occur, they can be disabling. The hamstrings are a collective name given to three major muscle-tendon groups in the back of the thigh that attach to the ischium (butt bone). These muscles are extremely important for posture, standing, walking, climbing stairs, and running. The most common way that they tear is from water-skiing injuries, but they can tear from any unexpected trauma or event that causes the knee to extend and the hip to flex. Another common way that it occurs is from a slip on a wet surface. One of the tell-tale signs of a complete tear is moderate swelling and bruising in the back of the leg that may take a few days to occur. There is often pain with sitting and climbing stairs.
These tears can be managed surgically or non surgically, but better results are seen with surgery for acute tears (recent tears within 6 weeks), particularly in young active patients