Hip Bursitis and Hip Arthritis

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I am 54 and have had significant to severe hip pain in my left hip for the past 5 years. The hip pain I experience is on the outside of my hip, hurts when I lay on it, walk, or when the Dr. presses on it. My pain seems to be totally consistent with trochanteric bursitis. I had a bursectomy (after several cortisone injections that did not help)one year ago. The hip pain has returned. X-rays, bone scan and MRI all show I also have hip arthritis which shows bone-on-bone contact. I do not have any pain usually associated with hip arthritis (groin area). Two Dr's have told me a hip replacment would probably get rid of the pain, but there were no guarantees, and that I may still have the bursitis pain after the surgery. Since the bursitis pain is the only pain I have, I don't want to go through hip replacement surgery and still have the same pain I am experiencing now. Does hip arthritis ever cause bursitis, or bursitis-like pain? Any advise would be appreciated.

-- (valh@pacbell.net), March 01, 2003


Im 43 and have similar symptons to you but my bursistis went away with the shots. But still painful on the side of my hip not the groin area. I've been told I have hip dysplia which causing my and the arthritis but no groin pain only on the side. I'm scheduled for ostemotey and that fixes. Maybe yours is dysplaysia has well.

-- Terri Harbut (Tharbut@aol.com), March 26, 2003.

Yes it can. Physical therapy treatments are a good alternative to surgery.

-- Timothy S. Johnson, M.D. (tjohns55@jhmi.edu), April 23, 2003.

I sent valh a detailed response but for anyone searching this site, I'd like to suggest a type of yoga known as Bikram yoga. It's a series of 26 yoga poses done in a heated (very heated) studio. Apparently the heat makes it easier to do the stretches. It worked for me after 5 of the 90 minute sessions. I suddenly started walking without a limp. It's tough getting used to the heat, but it works and I'm hoping to completely eliminate the bursitis that I've had for years. Don in Hayward, CA

-- Donald F. Janowsky (realjanowsky@aol.com), May 05, 2003.

I like this site. I hope I can come back to it more often. I use to always kneel doing most of my work on the job and never used knee pads. I sure wish I did now, it would have save me a lot of problems. I think my hip bursitis came from my laying on my right side. That is the only way I could fall asleep. Then there were times I slept on cement and wooden floors and the ground. All on my right side. I just come to that conclusion reading someones diagnosis on how hip bursitis can get started.

John G. Parisi jpparisi@aol.com

-- John Gabriel Parisi (jpparisi@aol.com), September 06, 2003.

I also have had significant hip pain (bilateral ) for the past 4 years. I also have found no success with pysical therapy, heat, ice, pain meds, anti-inflammatory meds, you name it. The ONLY thing that even gives me some relief is Yoga, but i have to do about 1-1&1/2 hours a day to maintain some sense of relief. I am trying to investigate bursectomy, to see what success rate is out there. Any input form others is greatly appreciated.

-- (jjbkwb@aol.com), September 11, 2003.

I have trochanteric bursitis,extensor. Six months ago, due to intracable pain for a year, I had a hip bursectomy and illio band release. I can say it helped with the extension pain, but not the spasm or increased pain with weight bearing. PT makes it worse, cortizone injections no longer help. Would I recomend surgery? Yes, but you need to be very realistic about the outcomes.

-- chris campbell (simmonsgrad@comcast.net), October 04, 2003.

Hi valh,

In answer to your question about hip pain having to be in the groin area to qualify for a hip replacement, that is a fallacy. You have all the symptoms for advanced degeneration of the hip joint and the opinion of two doctors (orthopedic surgeons?) and positive imaging tests as well. It seems that you are trying to talk yourself out of having a total joint replacement. I've just had two hip replacements and I am 43 years old and have never felt better. The surgery itself is almost totally without pain and was much easier than having a root canal done! You probably had more pain from the bursectomy and cortisone injection than you will from the hip replacement surgery!

-- christina delottinville (seamoregirl@hotmail.com), October 27, 2003.

You should visit this website: http://www.niams.nih.gov/hi/topics/hip/hiprepqa.htm

-- Robert Toussie (Robert Toussie @aol.com), March 15, 2004.

Has anyone tried Prolo therapy for their bursitis?

-- Charlotte Miller (philylady@hotmail.com), April 18, 2004.

Well, my situation is a little different from most of yours. I was in an automobile accident 6 months ago and went through physical therapy for my neck and lower back. I was diagnosed with bursitis in my hip, ironically the hip located where my seat belt buckle rests, and have tried anti-inflamatories, pain medications and one cortisone injection, but I still have significant pain. This has affected every aspect of my life and I'm not sure where to go from here. Any help or advice you can offer would be much appreciated.

-- Michelle (dbmb87@aol.com), May 11, 2004.

I had suffered 5 years with bursitis of the right hip with good results in the beginning with steriod injections. Three doctors told me that they would not give me anymore injections and to think about a right hip bursectomy. I went ahead and had the surgery done one year ago and now am in just as much pain as before, if not worse.

Physical therapy only gave me temporary relief as well as acupuncture.

The only solution seems to be pain pills and I truly don't want to go down that road. I only take them when I cannot tolerate the pain.


-- sandy (skparks@infostations.com), May 11, 2004.

I believe I would check into Legg Perthes disease. Old man Arthitis. Replace of the ball joint. In children the pain can only be in the knee,not in the hip at all.

-- Mary Haynes (mlh11350@yahoo.com), June 11, 2004.

I have previously contributed a response to this site, however, new aspects of my condition have arisen since that time. I have had a second cortisone shot, which by the way did not work at all this time. Now my doctor wants to do a bone scan to be sure that I did not crack the bone during my accident. He says that if the scan is negative, we need to consider surgery to remove the bursa. So far most of the testimonials that I have read indicate that this procedure has been ineffective and that the pain continues even after surgery. I'm not really sure what to do now. I am taking a different anti-inflammatory and a muscle relaxant, along with my pain medication. I would greatly appreciate any advice you can give at this point. I don't really want to go through a procedure that inevitably doesn't work. Desperate, please help!

-- Michelle (dbmb87@aol.com), July 10, 2004.

I am into my 7th week with no full weight on my left leg yet... I had a Bursectomy and while he was operating he found some tendons that had torn away and tied them to the bone.... I believe they contributed quite a bit to the pain I was having .. the pain used to go all the way down the leg , especially when I tried to sleep.... I had had 4 cortisone shots and they kept getting less effective... I have had some pain free days but find lately if I start putting weight on the leg for too long I really get quite a bit of pain back.... I cannot say yet if the operation has been a sucess, but am hoping for the best... I see Dr. in another 3weeks and by then I am supposed to be back to full weight on the leg... I will post another email and inform whether I think the operation was a sucess at that time... It sure seems like forever since I could walk without the walker or crutches...... carol

-- Carolyn Birney (banjo@montrose.net), September 28, 2004.

I am 22 years old and have been suffering with right hip bursitis for four years now. The pain is unbearable and hinders me from leading a normal life. My original orthorpaedic surgeon did a right hip tanoctamy 5 months ago which involved the incision of the trochanteric cell around the inflammed bursa to give relief. Unfortunately that did not work because my scar tissue healed maliciously. I was then advised to go for a bursectomy by two orthoepadics and a third suggested yoga, ayurvedic treatment(Indian medicine and therapy) and meditation instead which has given partial but no solid relief. I do not want to attempt open surgery again however please could people who've had a successful bursectomy respond so that I may know whether this could be a succesful option if ever considered.

-- Rikshana Singh (rikshana_s@yahoo.com), November 29, 2004.

i fell 9/12 and suffered a tibialmfracture and 3 cracks in my knee. when i started on the walker my left hip was so painful i could'nt walk. my orthopedic surgeon said i needed a bursectomy amd that after the surgery i would be begging him to do the other one. well guess what i'm not begging for the right one because the left one did'nt work. i'm so tired of living on pain pills that only last a few hours. i am a saleswoman and have not worked in 4 months. if anyone has any suggesions i' wide open to them . i need to get back to work.

-- arlene hutchinson (hutchremax@adelphia.com), January 01, 2005.

Gee, I'm thinking I'm in the same boat as several of you are. I have rt. hip pain going on 6 years and is progressively getting worse. After 9 cortisone injections, accupuncture, physical therapy, TENS unit, it is not improving. I have an appt. with an orthopedic doctor next Friday and was ready to say, "Let's have a bursectomy." Now, I'm sure reconsidering that option. Doesn't sound like those things work either. My MRI and x-rays don't even show arthritis....isn't getting older for the pits? I've always been very active with tennis, walking, golf, etc. and now at 62 yrs. of age, I'm not liking having to cut back. If I find out anything else from my appt. on Friday, I will share with you all. I would gladly have a hip replacement if that would help. I'm beginning to have a little groin pain too, but I'm thinking it's probably because of the way I'm walking (compensating) to get pain relief.

Actually, Aleve 2X daily seemed to help me alot, but now that there is controversy about that...who knows what to do?

Valh@pacbell.net, are you from California. My brother lives in Novato, Calif. and his e-mail is pacbell...just wondered.

-- Sharon Fletcher (ssf1125 @aol.com), January 07, 2005.

I am 47 & developed bursitis in my rt hip 5yrs ago. It developed after a long road trip to look at colleges with my daughter & then climbing stairs after a water problem in our basement. I took Ibuprofen 800mg 3x/day initially but probably didn't take it for a long enough time. Also went to PT but pain never totally went away. I did PT again this past summer & have had cortisone injections with minimal relief. I take pain meds to help me get to sleep & am sensitive to anti-inflamatory meds(they make me itchy), so my MD is considering putting me on Prednisone. Has anyone else been treated with steroids & did it work?

-- Denyse Cox (dcfromjp@aol.com), January 11, 2005.

I am 51 years of age and I have been suffering from bursitis of the left hip. I also have plantar fascitis in my left heel. I wonder if both are connected. Doctor has advised me to apply hot water fomentation to my left hip, and it does give me a lot of relief. Of course I was quite relieved when he told me that it was not osteoarthritis, as I had first suspected it to be. I try to keep myself physically active, and go for daily morning walks, but life has definitely slowed down for me, because of these 'aches and pains'! I wish there was some medication that made all these pains disappear permanently!

-- Betsy D'Sa (betsydsa@rediffmail.com), January 18, 2005.

I wish I had an answer to ease this self consuming pain. It will be ten years in May of this year that I have dealt with this pain. In the beginning I had several cortizone injections, physical therapy, went to a chiropractor, had a year of accupuncture, tried heat and ice, swam, dmso and other alternative treatments and then I had a bursectomy. It didn't work and the recovery was rough, the night of surgery felt like someone's hand was reaching in and pulling and twisting the insides of my hip and thigh. I had a second bursectomy and it band release by another dr. who had done a lot of these but he said I had a lot of scar tissue and inflammation and they did what they could, that was seven years ago. Now I take so much medicine which I am sick and tired of putting in my body. I still try and swim in a therapeutic pool that is about 92 degrees. I use the heating pad a lot, sit in my jetted tub, sometimes use ice and pray for God to help me through it. I was lifting something when this pain started and has never stopped. It went into my other hip a few months later but it only bothers me when I press on it or if the weather is really severe, the weather really bothers the bad hip. I seemed to go down hill with my health ever since. A couple years later I ended up with fibromyalgia, then I fell and broke my coccyx, that was almost three years ago and it still hurts and this past summer I tested positive for an autoimmune disease which the dr. believes is rheumatoid arthritis. In order not to take prednisone for the rheumatoid swelling I have discovered fish oil supplements which help with inflammation. I don't know if eventually it will help with the bursitis but it might. I am puzzled about the idea of any doctors recommending a hip replacement to hip bursitis. I would have been on the table a long time ago if that would have helped but all the orthopedic doctors have said that will not help because the bursa surrounds the hip joint so to replace the joint won't do any good. When they took out my bursa it grew back and I am sure it has grown back again after the second surgery. If the joint is replaced and even if the bursa is removed it will come back so you might as well have a bursectomy where they remove the bursa. I also saw on a site healthlinkusa there are over fifty some posts on the subject and there is one person who had their hip replaced and they ended up with trochanteric bursitis and they are more miserable than when they needed a hip replacement. I know my situation was not positive but there are some people who do get relief from the bursectomy and some people can get a mild case of bursitis and get relief from a cortizone shot. I feel like when the pain is severe, you have to try all avenues for relief or you will never know if it would help you. I know massage would hurt but that is my last resort and I think I may try it to break up some of the scar tissue anyway. I was 33 when this started and I will turn 43 this year so you all have my prayers that God will give you the strength to go on with this and try and get back some of your life.

-- Susan Hardie (cmlh1@netzero.com), January 21, 2005.

Try self massaging or aplying pressure with tennisball to myofascial trigger points in buttock and outer tight muscles plus quadratus lumborum, tensor latae fasciae.

Start easy, give it two weeks and see what happens, I hope it helps.

-- guide (nospam@guide.net), January 31, 2005.

I'm 25 and was rear-ended over 2 yrs ago. I started out with back pain which went away with PT but then developed bilateral trochanteric bursitis that is really ANNOYING. I'm sick to death of being in pain every day! I've tried 1 cortisone injection and PT, but neither were curative. I'll probably go back and get another injection, but I'm not too optimistic. For those of you that had a bursectomy, was it an arthroscopic procedure? I've done searches in the latest medical literature which indicate overall low complication rate and high success, but I didn't look through the articles well enough to decipher exactly HOW they define "success" and "complications". I think you have to remember that people who got better don't want to talk about it on the internet (they're out going skiing or horseback riding or something), so we might be getting a skewed viewpoint. BUT if the person who it does not work for is YOU, then you sure do care if it doesn't work!!! Any other thoughts on bursectomy would be greatly appreciated. Also, do you know how many cortisone shots it generally takes on average for people who have success with that route? (In other words, how many times should I try???) Thanks :).

-- (dizbug11@yahoo.com), February 16, 2005.

I'm 46 and was finally diagnosed with bursitis in my left hip by an orthopedist last year after many trips to a neurologist and too many MRIs to locate the source of my leg weakness. I first experienced leg weekness in 2002 and it increased in frequency over the next 6 months to the point where I couldn't walk for 5 minutes without weekness. I am not over weight and do not lead a sedintary lifestyle by any means. At this time last year I thought about what could have happened around the time I experienced my first symptoms and the only change that had occured (no accidents, falls, etc) was my getting a new pair of orthotics for my feet. I have worn orthotics for about 10 years for plantar fasilitis (sp?) with great success. I had new orthotics made from my older pair instead of using the casts made when I had the most recent ones made, and I experienced almost instant relief with the leg weekness. After 3 weeks it was almost perfect, but there was still leg weekness when I played golf, hiked, or used my rower. That's when I went to the orthopedist and got the bursitis diagnoses. While my symptoms have improved dramatically with the new orthotics, rest, and stretching, I have yet to be able to resume my normal activites without experiencing discomfort during the activity. I encourage those of you who have not been successfull in eliminating your discomfort to consider asking your orthopedist if you could benifit from foot orthotics. Leg length discrepancies and pronation of the feet can place stress on your hips and lead to bursitis. While it will take a few months of wearing the orthotics to notice any change, it is by far an inexpensive option that may give you the relief you desperately need.

-- Nancy Lehenky (nancyw@interbel.net), February 19, 2005.

I am 54 yrs.old and was diagnosed with left hip bursitis/arthritis in October 2004. On Oct. 30th I had my first cortisone shot that I thought was truly a miracle drug. Before i got off the doctor's table the pain was gone," I really mean gone !!! ". Well needless to say 6 weeks later I was begging for another with tremendous confidence that I would walk away with the same result. Much to my dissapointment, this time it took about 9 days before the shot took affect. My point is, " It worked ". It is now about 2 months later and when I noticed the pain when I coughed I immediatly called my doctor for another shot. There was no way I was putting myself through that torture for any second longer than I had to.

Come to find out, the general rule of thumb is "Idealy" they only suggest 3 cortisone shots a year. This is 4 months later and I'm on my third.

I now have an appointment with an orthepedic to be examined and I suppose physical therapy will de discussed. It was also mentioned to me the possibility of surgery.

I to am researching this issue and if I find any positive feed back I will gladly post this info. Because, to be quite honest, I would rather have 10 babies in a row than have to go throught this pain that never seems to end.

Good Luck All

-- Paula Smith (usersm4484@aol.com), March 05, 2005.

Hi, I was wondering - those of you that have diagnosed bursitis, do you have incredible pain and stiffness in the morning that gets better with movement?

Thank you for your input, I appreciate it.

-- Beth (eg4@aol.com), March 06, 2005.

I am 28 years old- and I have had trchanteric bursitis in BOTH hips since I was 19. I did not suffer any acute injury or anything of that nature, but the pain started in my right hip and within a month it was hurting on the left side also. I have never had a cortisone injection, rather I went through PT and pain management. The pain USED TO go away, but as of September of 2004 the pain came back in both hips so badly that I had had several days where I couldn't even get out of my bed to go to the bathroom in the morning. I went to a thermal spa in Europe, and had magnetic therapy, whirlpool treatments, massage, and therapeutic swimming. The pain miraculously went away... for about a month. I am back to square one, and the only thing I have found to provide ANY relief is 3 advils 3x a day. I am at the point that I want to do anything to make this go away, be it cortisone injections, bursectomy, WHATEVER. I'm getting married in 6 months, and I can barely walk now. I want to be able to dance at my wedding, and walk down the aisle WITHOUT a limp. I'm so frustrated that it's been hurting for so bad for so long now. I have never had it last this long in the 9 1/2 years I've had it, and I've tried supplement after supplement... cream after cream... patch after patch... pill after pill. If anyone has ANYTHING that has wokred for them, please let me know. After 9 years of avoiding cortisone, I think I'm going to have to at least give it a try, but I'm just worried that I'll be one of the people that the cortisone INCREASES the pain. Please HELP... Lacee Lacee@comcast.net

-- Lacee (Lacee@comcast.net), March 15, 2005.

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