- What is the trochanteric bursa?
In many areas of the body, muscles and tendons must slide over and against one another during movement. At each of these places, a small sac of lubricating fluid helps the muscles and tendons move properly. One of these places is the hip. Usually these sacs of fluid, called bursa function to reduce friction. The hip bone is one such area in the body.
- What is trochanteric (hip) bursitis?
Trochanteric bursitis is a common problem that causes pain in the area of the hip over the bump that forms the greater trochanter. Eventually the pain may radiate down the outside of the thigh. When the bursa sac becomes inflamed, pain results each time the tendon has to move over the bone. The pain may eventually be present at rest and may even cause a problem sleeping.
- What causes trochanteric (hip) bursitis?
Most cases of trochanteric (hip) bursitis appear gradually with no obvious underlying injury or cause. Trochanteric (hip) bursitis may occur after hip surgery. A fall on the hip may also injure the bursa.
- How is trochanteric (hip) bursitis diagnosed?
The diagnosis begins with a history and physical examination. In fact, this is usually all that is necessary to make the diagnosis.
- How is this injection performed?
If the physician uses X-ray guidance, the nurse will position you on your abdomen. Occasionally the physician will perform the procedure without the use of X-ray. If the physician does not use X-ray guidance, you will be asked to lie on your non-painful side.
The physician will clean the area to be injected with an antibacterial solution. Your skin will be numbed with a local anesthetic. The physician will guide the needle to the greater trochanter. When the physician is satisfied with the needle placement, he will inject the medication into the area and remove the needle.
The nurse will clean the antibacterial solution off your skin and apply a bandaid if needed.
- What medication is used for the procedure?
The physician will typically inject a combination of local anesthetic and steroid into the trochanteric bursa.
- How soon will the treatment help?
The onset of pain relief may be as soon as 15-20 minutes. This is due to the effects of the local anesthetic. Your pain may return in 4-6 hours as the effects of the local anesthetic wear off. The steroid usually takes 48-72 hours to be effective and the length of pain relief varies from person to person.
- Are there risks and complications?
As with any procedure, there is always a risk involved. There could be bruising, swelling or inflammation at the injection site or a possible infection at the injection site.
- How should I care for myself after the injection?
You should plan to take it easy on the day of the injection. Bedrest is not required. You may resume your normal activities the day following the injection. Remember that it usually takes 48-72 hours for the steroid to be come effective.
You may continue your normal diet and medications after the procedure. To relieve any soreness at the injection site(s), you may apply ice to the site(s) 20 minutes on/ 20 minutes off on the day of the injection. At subsequent times, you may choose to apply ice or heat. Please do not apply either for more than 20 minutes at a time.