Hip Bursitis – A.K.A. Greater Trochanteric Bursitis

Hip bursitis is the inflammation of the bursa, a fluid filled sack, located between the bony prominence on the outside of the hip called the greater trochanter and the tendons that pass over the top of the bone. Hip bursitis, which is known to physicians as trochanteric bursitis, is most common in middle-aged women but can occur in almost anyone. Typically someone who is experiencing hip bursitis feels pain in the outside of the hip that radiates down the outer thigh. Overtime the pain usually transforms from very sharp to more of an ache throughout the hip and thigh. It may also become worse at night or when seated for a prolonged period of time. People with the following have an increased risk of developing hip bursitis:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Repetitive motion or overuse
  • Hip surgery, both recent and sometime in the past
  • Scoliosis and other spine diseases
  • Unequal leg lengths
  • Bone spurs in the hip
  • Trauma from a fall onto the hip
  • Athletes involved in sports like basketball, running, soccer or rowing

Diagnosis Of Hip Bursitis

Hip bursitis can present symptoms very similar to other medical issues like lower back conditions, hip pointer, and iliotobial band tendonitis. Since hip bursitis can act like so many other problems it is very important to get a diagnosis from an orthopedic physician. In addition to a full examination, the physician will perform a variety of other tests and exams like x-rays and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). They may also ask you to stand on one leg to allow them to look at hip positioning.

Treatment of Bursitis In The Hip

Physicians almost always prescribe rest. Sometimes the rest will even go as far as bed rest and immobilization of the joint. In some cases the physician may prescribe icing the area or the use of an NSAID (non steroidal anti-inflammatory drug).  In some cases an orthopedist may prescribe physical therapy, steroid injection, and anti-inflammatory medication. In the most severe cases the physician may suggest surgical options. In many surgical cases, arthroscopic surgery can be performed which may allow the patient to go home the same day.

Orthopedic Physicians Are The Best Choice

A general practice physician may be able to diagnose a case of hip bursitis, but they usually can’t offer a full range of treatment options. If hip bursitis is suspected it is important to visit an orthopedic hip specialist like the doctors at the Illinois Bone and Joint Institute. They can offer every treatment option available, from rest to surgical procedures, based on the severity of the bursitis and what the underlying cause is. Orthopedists will also be able to effectively treat the other conditions that may look like trochanteric bursitis. Make an appointment today with one of IBJI’s many orthopedic physicians today if you are experiencing any chronic or severe hip pain.

This information is not intended to provide advise or treatment for a specific situation. Consult your physician and medical team for information and treatment plans on your specific condition(s).