Bursitis is an inflammation of the small sacs of fluid (bursae) that
cushion and lubricate the areas between tendons and bones. The trochanteric
bursa is a large sac separating the greater trochanter of the hip and the
muscles and tendons of the thighs and buttock. Bursitis can affect many of the
bursae around the hip, but trochanteric bursitis is the most common.
Trochanteric bursitis occurs more often in middle-aged or elderly women than in
men or younger people.
Trochanteric bursitis can be caused by an acute injury, prolonged
pressure on a bursa, or activities that require repeated twisting or rapid
joint movement (such as jogging or bicycling long distances). These activities
may lead to irritation or inflammation within the bursa. Trochanteric bursitis
may occur together with disc disease of the low back or arthritis of the hip.
It also may develop at the site of a previous hip surgery or occur along with
iliotibial band syndrome. Conditions such as gout may
also increase the risk for bursitis.
Symptoms of trochanteric bursitis may include:
- Hip pain, and sometimes buttock pain that spreads down the outside
of the thigh to the knee area. Pain may be worse during activities such as
walking, running, or sitting cross-legged with the leg over the opposite knee.
Pain may be severe enough at night that it disturbs your sleep.
- Tenderness when you press on the affected area or lie on the
- Swelling from increased fluid within the bursa.
- Redness and warmth (from inflammation or infection).
Home treatment for bursitis includes:
- Ice packs to the affected area.
- Medicines to relieve pain and swelling.
- Weight loss, to reduce pressure on the hip.
- Exercises to strengthen the hip muscles.
- Stretching exercises for the hip and lower back.
- Avoiding prolonged standing and the activity that causes
- Using a cane or crutches to reduce pressure on the hip.
- Using a lift in your shoe, to reduce pressure on the hip if one leg
is shorter than the other.
If home treatment does not relieve pain from bursitis, medical
treatment such as lidocaine or steroid injections into the trochanteric bursa
Warmth and redness in the area may be a sign of infection, which may
require evaluation by your doctor. Surgery is rarely
Hip Injuries, Age 12 and Older
Hip Problems, Age 12 and Older