Trochanteric Bursitis

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An Overview on Trochanteric Bursitis

The greater trochanter is located on the outside portion of the hip joint and is part of the femur (thighbone). Located near the pant pocket, this large part of the femur can usually be palpated on the outside of a patient’s hip. The iliotibial (IT) band slides past the greater trochanter when the hip is in motion. The trochanteric bursa is a thin, fluid-filled sac that alleviates friction during IT band movement. When the bursa becomes inflamed know as trochanteric bursitis, patients experience hip pain, swelling and weakness. Santa Barbara, Goleta, Santa Maria and Ventura, California area orthopedic hip specialist, Dr. Jervis Yau is available to assist patients affected by hip bursitis and return them to the activities they love.

Trochanteric bursitis is commonly caused by overuse of the hip joint in the athletic population. This form of hip bursitis is also found in patients with a tight iliotibial band. The trochanteric bursa may experience excessive friction with improper training, joint overuse or IT band tightness, leading to pain and swelling in certain patients.

Trochanteric Bursitis Symptoms

Patients affected by trochanteric bursitis report pain in the hip area over the greater trochanter. The pain often radiates down the lateral hip and thigh. Certain patients may also experience a slight limp when walking, as well as stiffness and difficulty getting up after sitting for an extended period of time.

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Trochanteric Bursitis Diagnosis

In order to properly diagnose trochanteric bursitis, Dr. Yau will perform a thorough medical review and physical examination. During the examination, he will place the patient in various positions to determine pain level, flexibility and alignment of the hip joint. He will also order x-rays in many cases to ensure there are no other significant hip joint pathology.

Trochanteric Bursitis Treatment

Non-Surgical

Patients affected by trochanteric bursitis rarely require a surgical procedure to alleviate symptoms. Dr. Yau will prescribe a combination of rest, modified activities and physical therapy aimed at stretching and strengthening the affected joint. Patients with a more severe case of hip bursitis may receive a corticosteroid injection to help control pain level and decrease inflammation to restore hip function.

Surgical

Dr. Yau may recommend an arthroscopic hip surgery to remove the inflamed bursa if non-operative measures fail or the pain associated with hip bursitis is debilitating. During the procedure, he will carefully remove the inflamed bursa and will evaluate the surrounding area for additional hip injuries. Often times, an arthroscopic iliotibial band release will be performed at the same time to decrease friction over the greater trochanter.

For additional information on trochanteric bursitis, or to determine the appropriate course of treatment for your hip bursitis, please contact the orthopedic office of Dr. Jervis Yau, hip specialist located in the Santa Barbara, Goleta, Santa Maria and Ventura, California area.

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