Are you a runner? Perhaps you’re training for that next big race. You’ve had your fair share of shin splints and blisters – some of the most common yet unwanted injuries that plague regular runners.
But there’s another common, unwanted, and less talked about the injury that many runners face. Trochanteric bursitis, also called hip bursitis, is a common cause of pain and injury for many long-distance runners.
And while the hip joint is one of the strongest joints in the human body, it can take a beating, especially from pounding that pavement for hours on end.
The result? Persistent pain in the hip caused by inflammation of the bursa. The bursa is a fluid-filled sac that acts as a cushion and shock absorber, protecting bones and tissues at the joint. With repeated motion – like running – it may become aggravated and inflamed due to the rubbing of a tendon on the outside of the hip.
And it’s not only limited to runners. Any athlete that performs the same movement with their hips and legs, again and again, may experience trochanteric bursitis. For example, bicyclists and soccer players may also encounter hip pain from bursitis.
The Tell-Tale Signs & Symptoms
The most common symptoms of trochanteric bursitis include:
- Sharp pain on the outside of the hip bone, which may become duller with time.
- Pain that gets worse after lying down or sitting.
- Pain or tenderness when you press on the outside of your hip.
- Pain on the outside of the hip when walking upstairs.
Many individuals consider the symptoms of trochanteric bursitis similar to that of a hip pointer injury.
A doctor or medical sports specialist will be able to properly diagnose the injury as hip bursitis.
In addition, this injury may be caused by bone spurs, hip surgery, falling on your hip, gait abnormalities, or from having legs of different lengths.
Treatment & Prevention
Rest is necessary for hip bursitis to heal. This may involve taking a brief break from running or other aggravating activities. Anti-inflammatory drugs, like ibuprofen, may also help combat the pain while it clears up.
In rare cases, a medical professional may drain the bursa of fluid if a significant amount of fluid has collected at the hip.
Once you’ve healed your case of hip bursitis, prevention is key to keep it from recurring. Gradually increase your intensity and duration with exercise. Focus on strengthening and stretching the muscles of the legs and hips.
In turn, you’ll get back to hitting that pavement or the trails in no time!