Trochanteric bursitis is an inflammatory disorder that affects the greater trochanter, a bony point at the side of the hip. The condition occurs when the bursa of the greater trochanter – a fluid-filled sac that eases movement between the trochanter and the gluteus maximus – becomes aggravated by overuse.
Causes of Trochanteric Bursitis
Repetitive friction between the greater trochanter of the femur and the gluteus maximus, which can lead to inflammation of the bursa. Biomechanical abnormalities, such as unequal leg lengths, may also increase the likelyhood of trochanteric bursitis.
Symptoms & Diagnosis of Trochanteric Bursitis
You may feel some tenderness over the bony upper part of your thigh, and pain running across your hip or down your outer thigh. You may also feel some swelling in the area around the bursa. Bending or extending your hip during walking, for e.g., will cause burning or aches and pains at the top of your thigh. Our specialist will diagnose your condition through physical examination and may recommend an ultrasound or MRI scan to confirm the diagnosis.
Risks & Complications of Trochanteric Bursitis
If you leave trochanteric bursitis untreated, you will experience ongoing hip pain. The pain may stay at the same level of intensity, but in some cases it cold increase in severity.
Treatment Options for Trochanteric Bursitis
- Oral anti-inflammatories
- Physiotherapy – to help release the affected area and strengthen the hip muscles
- Anti-inflammatory injection
- Extracorporeal shockwave treatment (EST) – in which soundwaves are directed at the area of pain, to speed up the healing process
If all the above treatments have failed, as a last resort, you may need to have the surgery to remove the bursa.
Trochanteric Bursitis Specialist
Dr Tan Chin Yik, Orthopaedic Specialist