Hip bursitis is a condition characterized by inflammation of the bursae, small fluid-filled sacs, that cushion the hip joint and reduce friction between the bone and soft tissues such as muscles and tendons. When the bursae become inflamed, they can cause pain and discomfort in the hip region. The most common type of hip bursitis is trochanteric bursitis, which affects the bursa located on the outside of the hip. Other types of hip bursitis include iliopsoas bursitis and ischial bursitis, which affect the bursae located in the front and back of the hip joint, respectively.
Causes of Hip Bursitis
Hip bursitis can be caused by a variety of factors, including:
Overuse: Repetitive activities or prolonged pressure on the hip joint, such as running, cycling, or standing for long periods, can irritate the bursae and cause inflammation.
Trauma: A direct blow to the hip or a fall on the hip can cause damage to the bursae and lead to inflammation.
Muscular imbalances: Muscle imbalances or weakness in the hip or leg muscles can cause abnormal stress on the bursae and increase the risk of hip bursitis.
Arthritis: Hip bursitis can occur as a result of other conditions affecting the hip joint, such as osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.
Infection: In rare cases, hip bursitis can be caused by an infection in the bursae.
Bone spurs: Bone spurs or calcium deposits can develop on the bones surrounding the hip joint and irritate the bursae, leading to inflammation.
Other medical conditions: Certain medical conditions such as gout, psoriasis, or thyroid disorders can increase the risk of hip bursitis.
If you are experiencing symptoms of hip bursitis, it is important to see a healthcare professional for an evaluation and appropriate treatment.
Signs and Symptoms of Hip Bursitis
The signs and symptoms of hip bursitis can vary in intensity and duration. Some of the most common signs and symptoms of hip bursitis include:
- Pain: Pain in the outer part of the hip is the most common symptom of hip bursitis. The pain may be dull or sharp and can range from mild to severe. The pain may be worse at night, during physical activity, or when pressure is applied to the affected area.
- Stiffness: Stiffness in the hip joint, especially in the morning, is a common symptom of hip bursitis. This stiffness can make it difficult to move the hip or perform daily activities.
- Swelling: Swelling in the hip area may be present in cases of severe bursitis.
- Tenderness: The hip area may be tender to the touch, especially over the bursae.
- Limited range of motion: Hip bursitis can cause limited range of motion in the hip joint, making it difficult to perform activities such as walking, climbing stairs or getting up from a chair.
- Clicking or popping sounds: Some people with hip bursitis may experience clicking or popping sounds when they move their hip.
- Weakness: Hip bursitis can cause weakness in the hip or leg muscles, making it difficult to perform daily activities.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to seek evaluation and treatment from a healthcare professional to determine the underlying cause of your hip pain and develop a plan for management.
Treatment for Hip Bursitis
Physiotherapy can be an effective treatment option for hip bursitis. The goals of physiotherapy are to reduce pain and inflammation, improve the range of motion and strength, and prevent future occurrences of hip bursitis. Here are some common physiotherapy treatment options for hip bursitis:
Ice and Heat Therapy: Applying ice or heat to the affected area can help reduce pain and inflammation. Ice therapy can be used in the early stages of bursitis to reduce inflammation, while heat therapy can be used to improve blood flow and promote healing in later stages.
Manual Therapy: Manual therapy techniques such as massage, joint mobilization, and stretching can help to reduce muscle tension, improve range of motion, and promote healing.
Exercise Therapy: Exercise therapy can be used to improve muscle strength, flexibility, and balance. Strengthening the hip and leg muscles can help to reduce stress on the bursae and prevent future occurrences of hip bursitis.
Electrotherapy: Electrical modalities such as ultrasound, TENS, and interferential therapy can help to reduce pain, improve circulation, and promote healing.
Education and Self-Management: Your physiotherapist can provide education on proper body mechanics, ergonomics, and activity modification to help prevent future occurrences of hip bursitis. They can also teach you self-management techniques such as stretching and strengthening exercises to manage your symptoms at home.
It is important to seek evaluation and treatment from a qualified healthcare professional, such as a physiotherapist, for your hip bursitis. They can develop a personalized treatment plan to address your specific needs and help you achieve your treatment goals.
If you have any questions or would like to speak to a therapist about hip bursitis please call us at 03 9836 1126.
Ma, W., Zhang, Y., Yan, S., Wang, S., & Zhu, J. (2021). Effect of ultrasound-guided needling combined with physical therapy for trochanteric bursitis: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine