Trochanteric bursitis

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What is trochanteric bursitis?

Trochanteric bursitis (also known as greater trochanteric pain syndrome) is one of the most common causes of lateral hip pain in adults. It has been reported to be the cause of hip pain in up to 15.0% in women and 8.5% of men. In hip pain after join replacement this can be a cause of pain in 5-10% of patients.

Trochanteric bursitis is a condition characterized by inflammation of the bursa located at the outer part of the hip, near the greater trochanter. The bursa is a small fluid-filled sac that acts as a cushion between bone and soft tissues such as tendons, muscles, and ligaments.

What are the symptoms?

The main symptom of trochanteric bursitis is pain on the outside of the hip, which may radiate down the thigh or buttock. The pain may worsen with activities such as walking, running, or climbing stairs, and may also be present at night, making it difficult to sleep on the affected side.

What are the causes?

There are many potential causes of trochanteric bursitis, including

  • overuse or repetitive stress,
  • hip injuries or trauma,
  • arthritis, and
  • poor posture or biomechanics during activities.
  • Or often, without any obvious cause

How can you alleviate the pain of trochanteric bursitis?

In most cases such inflammation is self-limiting, i.e., resolves on its own. Sometimes, simple treatments such as rest, ice (or heat), anti-inflammatory creams or medicines may be required.

If the pain symptoms persist despite self-directed treatments, an evaluation by a physiotherapist, GP or pain specialist may be required. Further treatment involves physical therapy and stretching.

If the condition does not improve rapidly following this, injection treatments may be required, especially to facilitate physical therapy. Such injections involve local anaesthetic and corticosteroid and are best placed under ultrasound guidance (for precision) or X-ray guidance. Occasionally a course of such injections may be necessary.

In very rare cases, surgery may be required.

If you’re in South Wales and need help regarding trapped nerves, chronic pain, joint and neck pain, or a wide variety of disorders, then get in touch with Pain Management Wales.

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