Hip Bursitis Symptoms

Hip Bursitis
Hip bursitis image. Click to enlarge

Pain on the outer side of the hip, where the outer hip attaches to the upper thigh bone, is the most common symptom of hip bursitis.

Typically patients with hip bursitis have some combination of the symptoms listed below.

Hip pain
Pain at the outside of the lower part of the hip is the most common symptom of hip bursitis. Patients often initially describe the pain as sharp or searing. After a period of several days or weeks the pain may change to more of an ache. With iliopsoas bursitis, the pain will be felt more in the groin area.

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Pain that is worse after prolonged inactivity
Most patients describe that the pain is worse after sleeping or after being seated for a while.

Pain that is worse with repetitive activity
The pain may intensify after prolonged repetitive hip movements, such as with walking, jogging, or stair climbing.

Hip tenderness
Patients with hip bursitis have tenderness and pain over the side of the hip. Lying down on the affected side of the hip may cause a sudden and sharp increase in pain.

Radiating pain
Initially, the pain may be located primarily at the outside of the lower hip. Over time the pain may radiate down the outside of the thigh or to other points in the body, such as the lower back, buttock or groin.

Pain at extreme range of motion
Some patients may experience pain during extreme rotation, hip adduction (using the hip to move the leg past the center midline of the body), or hip abduction (using the hip to move the leg away from the body).

Fever and hip swelling, redness, and warmth
People with septic hip bursitis, in which the bursa is infected, will experience the same symptoms described above and may also feel tired, feverish, and sick. They may also notice that the skin is warm to touch and red at the hip. Septic hip bursitis requires prompt medical attention, including treatment with antibiotics to prevent the spread of infection to other points in the body or into the bloodstream.

With hip bursitis, swelling is not as apparent as it is in other common types of bursitis, such as knee bursitis and elbow bursitis, which affect bursae located just beneath the skin. Likewise, skin redness and inflammation are not usually seen with hip bursitis.

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Article written by: Marco Funiciello, DO
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