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A bursa is a fluid filled sack which is designed to reduce friction between various structures in the body. The trochanteric bursa is the bursa on the outside of the thigh bone (femur) near where the gluteal muscles attach onto the thigh bone. This bursa helps to allow smooth and comfortable movement of the hip.
Trochanteric bursitis is a painful condition where this bursa gets inflamed. Sometimes this condition can develop due to inflammation from a trauma such as a fall. It can also occur in association with conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis or gout. In other cases it can develop seemingly ‘out of the blue’.
This is an inflammatory condition so treatment, initially, would focus on measures to reduce inflammation and swelling in the area. This may include a visit to your GP to discuss anti-inflammatory medication. In other cases ice or anti-inflammatory gels, as well as rest from aggravating activities, may be enough to control inflammation.
The next phase of treatment involves addressing any factors that caused the development of this condition in the first place. Often the bursitis which develops out of the blue, will in fact have an underlying cause. Poor motor control of the pelvis can change the function of the gluteal muscles causing an increase in friction in this area and an irritation of the bursa. Leg length discrepancies or abnormalities in your walking pattern can cause similar problems. At Ballsbridge Physiotherapy these causative factors will be addressed.
Trigger point dry needling or soft tissue release may be used to release the gluteal and hip muscles to take pressure off the bursa. A rehabilitation programme will then be introduced with emphasis on correcting any issues that lead to the development of this bursitis. This will help to ensure that this problem is a once off issue and does not reoccur!
Contact us at our Dublin 4 clinic for further information.