Signs Your Hip Pain Stems from Bursitis

Hip pain is a common complaint, and it’s easy to see why. Your hips support your body's weight while you do most daily activities such as walking, running, and standing. It’s one of the largest and strongest joints in your body, but over time, cartilage, muscles, and tendons can get overused, damaged, and worn down.

This breakdown of your hips can cause pain and make it difficult to get around. Hip bursitis, also called trochanteric bursitis, is one of the most common causes of hip pain.

Bryan King, MD, PhD, a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon at Tuscaloosa Orthopedic & Joint Institute, wants to make sure you understand hip bursitis and your options if you’re diagnosed with it.

What is hip bursitis?

Hip bursitis is a painful condition where your bursae become swollen or irritated. Bursae are fluid-filled sacs that cushion the tendons, ligaments, and muscles around the hip joint. They help these parts move smoothly over the bone. 

When inflamed or swollen, they can cause movement of your hip to result in pain and tenderness. A variety of issues and conditions can cause hip bursitis. Some of these issues include:

Signs and symptoms of hip bursitis

Anyone can get hip bursitis, but it's more common in women and older people. Hip pain from bursitis can be sharp, dull, achy, constant, or sporadic. It's important to see an experienced doctor to get a diagnosis and treatment plan. 

Hip bursitis pain usually occurs when you’ve been sitting for a prolonged period, lying down on the side of the inflamed bursae, or after prolonged walking or climbing the stairs. Sometimes people experience hip bursitis for a short period, and then it goes away. Others can experience it as chronic pain or pain that comes and goes. 

Hip bursitis treatment options

Fortunately, hip bursitis is often treated with noninvasive or minimally invasive therapies. The first line of treatment is usually over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen (Advil®) or naproxen (Aleve®) in combination with rest and hip strengthening exercises. Ice packs can also help to relieve pain and swelling. 

Corticosteroid injections can help reduce swelling and pain if other treatments fail to provide relief. In some cases, surgery may be necessary when all other options are ineffective. 

The type of surgery you need depends on the cause of your hip pain. In some advanced cases, joint replacement may be necessary. Other surgery options may repair or remove the injured or diseased tissue.

Does your hip hurt? Call our Tuscaloosa Orthopedic & Joint Institute office in Northport, Alabama, at 205-354-2679 for an appointment with Dr. King. You can also send a message to Dr. King and the team here on our website.

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