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Common Injuries and Treatments

Ankle / Elbow / Hip / Knee / Shoulder / Spine / Wrist



Greater Trochanteric Bursitis / Tendonitis

What is greater trochanteric bursitis/tendonitis?

Greater trochanteric bursitis/tendonitis is usually first experienced as pain on the outside of the hip. The greater trochanter is a bony prominence on the outside of the femur (thigh bone) a few inches below our waist line. Tendinitis is an inflammatory response in the tendons (tendons attach muscles to bones) that attach to the greater trochanter.  Bursitis is an inflammation of the bursa that sits on the greater trochanter.  The bursa is a fluid filled sack that helps to minimize stress to the tendons that cross over this bony prominence.

What causes injuries to this tissue?

Irritation of these tendons or the bursa itself can happen when there is too much activity, weakness, tightness or direct trauma to the area. 

What is the best treatment approach?

Physical therapy, relative rest, ice, and stretching are usually the first line of treatment. If symptoms persist, oral corticosteroids or a steroid injection directly to teh area may be recommended by your doctor.

What will the role of physical therapy be in this process?

Treatment by physical therapists for this condition can include soft tissue massage, stretching, strengthening exercise, use of ice and heating modalities. Biomechanics of the entire lower half of the body (including the low back) will also be evaluated to determine if something in the rest of the limb may be dysfunctional leading to excessive stress at the hip.

Will other services be helpful in taking care of this?

Underlying muscle tightness and soft tissue restrictions that are found to be related to greater trochanteric issues may be helped by massage therapy work.  Acupuncture can also be of assistance with the pain associated with these conditions.  Training to return to specific life tasks or sports can be initiated by physical therapists and progressed by personal trainers.  After your initial physical therapy evaluation, your physical therapist will help to determine if these services may be helpful.

Need More?

If you have more clinical questions about this condition, please click here to email our Director of Clinical Operations, Jessica Douglas, MSPT, OCS, or you can get more information by searching our blog.

If you'd like a complimentary injury screen with one of our licensed physical therapists to discuss your condition, please contact us.

If you're ready to make an appointment for any of our services, please contact us.

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