Greater Trochanteric Pain Syndrome

01/04/2020

 

Limp in Leap out Physiotherapy & Wellness in Belfield provides servicing to many near by Inner West suburbs including Belmore, Strathfield and Croydon park. See our weekly blog below if you are interested in new research, facts, general information or ideas.

What is it?

Greater trochanteric pain syndrome (GTPS) is when you experience pain on the side of the hip. It is one of the most common causes of hip pain. GTPS involves repetitive overload tendinopathy of the gluteus medius and minimus muscles. These two muscles assist you in everyday life such as walking, stair climbing, running and standing on one leg. 

 

An interesting fact about this condition is, that it used to be called trochanteric bursitis. However, technology with advanced imaging in the modern days shows that acquiring inflammation of the bursae (small cushioning sacs between tendons and bones around joints) is uncommon. Even if bursitis is present, most often the irritation of a tendon is the primary cause of pain. Therefore it has changed to be called Greater trochanteric pain syndrome. 

 

Firstly, who is at risk of acquiring GTPS?

  • A traumatic event such as falling on to the side of the hip 

  • Excessive repetitive movements involving the hip such as increased walking distance, running long distance

  • Sedentary lifestyle: Sitting for long period of time exerts excessive pressure on the hip and develops weakness of hip muscles 

  • Middle aged to elderly who has developed osteoarthritis 

  • Leg length discrepancy or overweight 

 

Secondly, how can physiotherapy help?

  • Strength exercises have shown great improvement in GTPS. Targeting the correct muscles will result in a satisfactory outcome. 

  • Advice and education allows patients to gain knowledge of the condition. Also minimise aggravating activities to avoid further strain on the structures.

  • Soft tissues release the muscles and structures around the hip to avoid compressing on injury sites. 

  • According to the study of Mellor et al., 2018, exercise (strengthening and stretching) combined with education for patients are superior to glucocorticoid injection or no exercising at all. 

 

Take home message:

  • If you feel pain on the side of your hip after a fall, prolong sitting due to sedentary lifestyle or performing repetitive movements involving the hip such as jumping and running. Don’t let this take over your lifestyle! See our physiotherapists for a comprehensive assessment and management plan to take control of GTPS. 

This information can be used to gain a better understanding of hip pain. To find out more about how we can help your understanding, or to book in for a consultation you can contact us via our Limp in Leap out Physiotherapy & Wellness contact us page, or book online here.

 

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Written by Willis

Physiotherapist

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