Approximately 18 bursae surround the hip joint. These are derived developmentally from and are physiologically similar to synovium and tendon sheaths. As a result, they suffer from the same inflammatory afflictions which cause problems to the joint itself. Conditions that affect the bursae include traumatic inflammation, which is usually secondary to overuse or excessive pressure; infections; metabolic disorders such as gout; and benign and malignant growths.
Treatment consists of rest, ice, anti-inflammatory medications orally and, occasionally, intrabursal injections. Ultrasound physical therapy may help as well. The prognosis is good as long as associated problems such as infection and low-back disk disease are ruled out. Mechanical problems, especially leg length discrepancies, must be sought and, if found, properly treated so that further trochanteric bursitis does not occur.
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