Hip Bursitis - Treatment

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What is the treatment for hip bursitis?

The treatment of any bursitis depends on whether or not it involves infection. Noninfectious or aseptic hip bursitis can be treated with ice compresses, rest, and anti-inflammatory and pain medications. Occasionally, it requires aspiration of the bursa fluid. This procedure involves removal of the fluid with a needle and syringe under sterile conditions. It can be performed in the doctor's office. Sometimes the fluid is sent to the laboratory for further analysis. Frequently, there is inadequate fluid accumulation for aspiration. Noninfectious hip bursitis can be treated with an injection of cortisone medication, often with an anesthetic, into the swollen bursa. This is sometimes done at the same time as the aspiration procedure.

Patients with hip bursitis can often benefit by weight reduction, stretching exercises, and wearing proper footwear for exercise activities. Sometimes physical-therapy programs can be helpful. Generally, patients should avoid hills and stairs and direct pressure on the affected hip (sleep on the other side), when possible, while symptoms are present. Affected people should also avoid exercising on inclined surfaces and stairs, especially running hills, until symptoms have resolved.

Septic bursitis (rare in the hip) requires even further evaluation by a doctor. This is unusual in the hip bursa but does occur. The bursal fluid can be examined in the laboratory to identify the precise bacteria causing the infection. Septic bursitis requires antibiotic therapy, often intravenously. Repeated aspiration of the infected fluid may be required. Surgical drainage and removal of the infected bursa sac (bursectomy) may also be necessary.

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Comment from: carizona, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 02

I've had horrible right hip pain for over 2 years and was diagnosed with greater trochanteric bursitis. Six months of physical therapy, 6 bursa injections, one deep hip injection, and a phenol injection later, MRIs show a torn gluteus medius tendon. An orthopedic surgeon is going to clean up the hip much like one would repair a torn rotator cuff in a shoulder. Hope it helps! My thoughts and well wishes to all who suffer from chronic pain; it takes such a toll on you and can be horribly frustrating (oh how I've cried myself to sleep sometimes!) All the best to everyone!

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Comment from: Nikki, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: June 04

I have had pain in both my hips for some time now, the right hip is worse than the left side. I have trouble walking long distances. I have done physical therapy twice; while in therapy I have had acute puncture in both hips, I have also had cortisone shots in both hips, pain medications (which I need to watch how many I take due to migraines). Everything worked for such a short time then my hips will start hurting again. When I was a certified nursing assistant (CAN) it was at its all-time worst, now that I have a desk job it can get bad while sitting for such a long time. I would love to find something that would help me to get rid of some of the pain I have.

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