Trochanteric bursitis after hip replacement

Posted , 22 users are following.

hi has anyone been diagnosed with trochanterc bursitis after having a hip replaced . If so would love to hear about how it feels to you ,how it was diagnosed ,and how it's treated . 

Many thanks 


2 likes, 32 replies

32 Replies

  • Posted

    Afternoon Suziemo. Yes I was diagnosed with that after my hip revision. It's pain when pressure is applied all around the hip. Along with tendinitis. My dr told me Wednesday that massaging area was the best thing for it. I'm also using a cream that was prescribed by dr. Voltaren is the name but with insurance it's a generic called diclofenac. Sometimes it's a constant pain. And it feels like hip swells. I ice and use heat. I'm also having nerve pain in the thigh. It's the femoral cutaneous nerve that runs in front and along side of thigh. Dr diagnosed it during exam and feeling the hip and thigh. He referred me to a pain dr. Ive been given injections in the cutaneous nerve it seemed to help with the nerve pain and the bursitis and tendonitis. I'm thinking it's something that's going to take awhile to go away. But from what I've read icing, anti inflammatory meds, steroid injections, and exercising are treatments for this condition. I've had mine for at least 8 months now. It's getting better but s very slow process. How Is it affecting you? LD

    • Posted

      Hi Linda 

      many thanks for your reply . 

      Had my hip replaced 8 months ago now and my hip is still really tender to touch and there is no way I could lie on it. It's so painful. 

      Havent had a check up in a while but have been reading about hips a lot and feel sure that's what I have. 

      Interesting about the massage as when I touch my hip area it is so painful but then if I massage it it seems to feel much less sore. But then an hour or so later a tiny brush of a touch hurts again.

      Thought it was normal until mY dad of 82 had a hip op and 6 weeks later is sleeping on it very comfortably with no pain to the touch at all. Seem to have so much going on with my body at the moment !!! 

      I will try to start massaging it regularly and see if that helps ,but I really should go to the dr but our dr surgery is not very good and I always feel I come away feeling worse than before went. 

      Many thanks again for answering if you do think of anything else please do message me. 

      Hopefully your tucked up in bed fast asleep 1 am here and I am up stressing 😩

      Best wishes 


  • Posted

    Suzie, I had that diagnosis post-THR. Here is an article about it from here on Patient.

    For me it was pain over the greater trochanter on the surgical leg, and also pain down the side of my thigh to the side of my knee on both legs. That side-of-the-thigh" pain remains, and I am almost two years post-THR.

    My biggest problem after the surgery was that my gluteus medius and gluteus minimus tendons on the surgical leg were torn. I was unable to walk without a severe limp and pain. I had surgery to repair those tendons 15 months after the THR. At the same time, my surgeons did a bursectomy of the bursa on my greater trochanter, and they smoothed the trochanter to prevent the "catching" that I'd been having. 

    So, now I am 7 months after the second surgery, and I still have that side-of-the-thigh pain, and assume that I will always have it. It's common in us "older" women. My sister has it, too, and she has not had a THR. 

    • Posted

      Hi Annie 

      oh no yours sounds worse than mine ,no pain in my thigh just my side hip and in my gluteus. 

      Still walking with a trendelenburgh gait as was on crutches for 6 months before op as hip so bad . 

      Walked better a few weeks ago but dr made me raise my non op leg onto his lap to see a toenail that's in growing and injured my knee as it has bad arthritus and now walking bad again !! 

      Such bad doctors at our surgery ,thinking of changing .

      Hope your pain gets better soon . 

      Best wishes 


    • Posted

      Suzie, I had trendelenburg gait and the glute pain at 8 months, too. What signaled that I had a bigger problem was that I was unable to do the single leg stance at all on my surgical leg. It immediately collapsed when I tried to do it. That led to further testing with MARS MRI and my second opinion surgeon confirmed the torn glute tendons. I hope that isn't your problem as well! You need someone who knows their way around the soft tissues of the hip. My original surgeon had no clue what was wrong with me, and when I asked about glute tendon tears, he said it wasn't possible and surgery couldn't be done to repair them (since they can't tear). Well, he was wrong on both counts.

      So sorry about your injured knee. I know what you mean about feeling like your whole body is failing. Inbetween my two surgeries I had a compression fracture of a vertebra and it was the worst thing I have ever experienced in terms of pain and disability. Just barely got over it, sort of, before my second hip surgery. I am finally feeling somewhat better. I still have some pain and limping on walking, especially when I am tired. But I keep getting better all the time. Wishing the same for you!

    • Posted

      Thanks Annie 

      i couldn't do the leg lifts either for about 3 weeks ,it was so frustrating my leg just would not lift at all ,I kept trying several times a day then one day it began to lift a tiny bit . Can lift it well now but by the time I get to no 9 it's a real effort  and uncomfortable but keeping it up ,usually do 12 that's my top though . 

      Wow sounds like you really suffered too Hun ,fractured vertebrae must have been excruciating painful . Know what you mean about limping worse when your tired. It's so hard to try to keep your core straight and not just waddle . Know why there are so many people waddling from side to side do much easier and less pain that way. Have to really concentrate on walking ,which used to be such a natural thing to do ,not anymore. 

      Sending healing thoughts to you Annie 

      many thanks 😘

  • Posted

    dear suzie, 

    unfoortunately me too but in my "old new" hip -

    after 2nd Left THR 6 months after 1st one, surgeon at 6 weeks follow up appointment diagnosed the trochanteric Bursitis because of the pain I had -- he just touched the spot and then told me - he didn't want to do anything about it, told me to give it at least another 6 weeks - if I still had pain, he would go further and might give me the cortisone shot ... so, no treatment - except for more rest maybe - 

    I can still feel it but it is a lot less ...

    too bad about your surgeon though ... it seems that once they have done the surgery, they are done with you ... but go see him/her anyway to get some peace of mind okay?

    take it easy 

    big warm hug



    • Posted

      Thanks Renee 

      feel like my whole body is failing at the moment so many health issues

      definately struggling to bounce back . 

      Wish I could get my life back ,just surviving ,thankfully I have a lovely husband. You going to have the injections if they are still sore. ? 

      Many thanks Renee 

      hugs gladly received X 

    • Posted

      no injections for me , Suzie - I had a bad experience with it when I had tendinitis in elbow ---- 

      it kind of sucks right -- for some reason I also had other health issues after THR - maybe because my immune system worked overtime or something - 

      it is a marathon and requires so much patience - I am happy for you that you have a loving husband and I understand  that you want your life back as it was before  this whole hip thing - 

      for now, try to accept that this is what it is ... no need to beat your self up, instead give yourself tender loving care -

      angel blessings

  • Posted

    Mine was before, not after. I did have the injections, which worked well but it came back. The second time I had a physiotherapist who showedme how to massage properly - it actually needs a very firm massage, not gentle at all. It involved using the thumbs to press and massage. One of those spiky balls rolled firmly around the area three times a day works well. Once I knew what I was doing it was easy to act as soon as it flared up, and after a few months it just stopped.
  • Posted

    Hi Suziemo,I wonder how you are doing now. I hope better.

    I am almost 5 months post THR and have very painful hip bursitis. I can lie on that side at all, it’s too painful. I had had bursitis before surgery which did not respond to injections. My bursa was “cleaned out” during surgery but it came back. I am quite upset by all this because I also have a lot of thigh pain too so walking is still not comfortable. I can’t really walk too far. The thigh pain might be iliotibial band issues now, surgeon says, since it goes right down to the side of my knee. I had no idea i would have so many problems after surgery despite doing everything correctly. I am waiting for a cortisone shot in the Trochanteric bursa to be scheduled. Did you get one and did it help? 

  • Posted

    Just got diagnosed with bursitis. Since I had my hip replaced 3 years ago, i guess it is trochanteric bursitis (dr is not a big talker so skipped on the name).  The pain started midly all around the hip with thigh pain as well, then got really intense..sort like bad flareups that would come and go.  Finally asked to have an xray, I was afraid of infection or worse, i had just read online about a 72 yr old woman who woke up one day with extreme pain in the hip and was diagnosed as having bone cancer. It scared the hell out of me and asked for xray. Well, xrays were fine according to my doctor, he said what you have is bursitis.  Just rest dont walk 4-5 miles few times a week like i was doing, go to the gym instead and do bikes. There, that was his statement. So now i am back here on this forum, was here a lot during my hips recovery..had both hips replaced 10 mos apart.  Hope you are all feeling better..i know i am a late post. Hapy new year everyone!
    • Posted

      Oh no ....your story sounds exactly like mine. I also had a THR 2/2015 exactly 3 years ago & was so happy to not have the pain but in Sept 2017 started having back & hip pain in that replaced hip. One morning I couldn't even get out of bed ! Went to the Ortho. & was Xrayed & told nothing wrong w/ the hip but Xray showed a compression fracture in lower spine....told they were going to do an Mri to see how bad it was. They did  the the MRI 10 days later. Obviously they didn't think it was too bad & they told me it would have to heal on it's own. I know they should have included my hip in that MRI & I was under the impression they were going too do that. Fast forward to Jan 2018 & I'm still in so much pain. Went to my regular doctor & she even had a 2nd Xray to see if the Orth. missed something. Well you know the story...test/xray taken & come back in 2 weeks to discuss results. She said regular Xray didn't show problem w/ hip but she sent me to a Rheumatologist since I also have the whole array of problems w/ arthritis. It took a couple of minutes into the exam by the Rheumatologist & she said she was very certain I had bursitis & was amazed that the ortho doc. didn't figure that out. She said a cortisone shot would help but she didn't feel comfortable doing it until she saw the records/xrays from the ortho. doc as they did the replacement. So now she has to send for the records from the Ortho.(which I actually had called their office to have them send my records to her....they never did. BTW my regular doctor's office never sent her my records either after I requested they do so 2 times). I feel like I've been given a real run around by the Orthopedic surgeons office ! So here I sit in pain for another couple weeks.

  • Posted

     I too have been having severe pain in my left hip after THR in 2007. Since November 2016 I have had several Cortizone injections spaced about every three months per my doctor's orders. Yesterday I had an MRI  to determine whether or not I will need surgery to repair a tear or remove the bursa. I spoke with a physical therapist who does sports injuries for college athletes and he was surprised to hear that my doctor had left the bursa in after the THR as he understood those were to be removed so that this these problems would not happen. I am meeting with my ortho doctor next week to discuss treatment. At the present time I cannot put any  weight on my left side meaning standing walking or doing any activities upright. Ice has been my best friend  and I need to correct the situation as I have no meaningful quality of life at present being in pain all the time. I understand and sympathize with your problems and hope that you get a resolution to them. Seeing everyone's experiences on this website has been really helpful to me as I don't not feel alone with this problem. I will update you next week after meeting with my ortho dr that did both my hip replacements. I also have had bursitis in my right hip but injections seemed to have helped.  I really thought that all my pain problems would be over once I had the replacements but that has not been the case. I hope someday that medical science and research will find a way to inject cartilage between a joint  to replace that cartilage that is worn out and would prevent these replacements. I hate having the metal  in my body and when it is very cold out I can feel the metal hips. Traveling as you know  is extremely difficult with these replacements, having to be subjected to the detectors and be patted down each and every time it's completely frustrating and dehumanizing.  A good lesson for young people today is to stay trim and fit and exercise all of your muscles to keep them strong and healthy and to keep your joints from deteriorating. Good luck Suziemo. 

    • Posted

      How did your doctor appointment turn out ?  Was reading your post this morning right after I left an extensive post as a reply to kaleani75551. As I stated in my reply to story is the same as her & your's. I'm beginning to feel my Orthopedic surgeon is avoiding my problem. I only learned about this bursa problem, that I guess is somewhat common in THR patients, when I went to a Rheumatologist last week. 

    • Posted

        I met with my doctor and he said that I didn’t have any tears which is the good news but I said to him why do I have this severe pain and he told me I have gluteal tendinopathy and there’s nothing he can do for me other than injection, rest ice and anti-inflammatory medication.  After crying in pain after his injection which he basically yelled at me when I jumped because you know what a Cortizone injection does when it hits that inflammation, I felt I was inconveniencing him and taking up valuable time with my pain  problems.    Although he is one of the top skilled surgeons in Boston, from a reputable hospital that is known for this type of joint surgery, I am feeling somewhat abandoned by  him. So here I am again, leaving his office feeling like he’s more interested in the chair in his office than me and and also is more interested in the new patients that are  having the hip and knee replacements. I am on my own now and I’m going to start getting the advice from as many medical people as I can as to what  treatment is available for this problem. I do not believe that there is “nothing” that can be done. I’m going to get a second opinion and if need be a third opinion.   Last week I met with the new ortho who is doing extensive blood testing determine my metal levels also had complex x-rays done and we’re going to talk next week about some form of treatment I don’t know what that will be but I have a good feeling about this doctor he’s an expert on the effect of metal on metal implants in your body and how it affects the tissue surrounding those implants. I’m still in pain I’m still using ice as it is the only way to relieve the pain.   Cannot walk or put weight on my left leg as the hip pain is extreme. I carry ice with me wherever I go so that I can do things outside of the home which is very limited. I will update everyone once I meet with this new ortho doctor for my follow-up visit on February 28. I keep praying every day that we will find a solution to this problem as the quality of life I have is not very good and I’m too young to be confined to a wheel chair.  
    • Posted

      Andrea to quote your description... here["Cannot walk or put weight on my left leg as the hip pain is extreme. I carry ice with me wherever I go so that I can do things outside of the home which is very limited.]"

      That is exactly how I was with MoM. I could have written that myself. I could not even lift a gallon of milk. My was recalled by the manufacturer dou to many patients having the same issues.. Had many tests Xray scans and nothing showed up on any of them. 

      I had a loose femeral component which was not seen in all the scans xrays. Plz See online the many issues from this type of implant imhad several. 

      I had revision done and now I am as good as new! Always hoping that you too will have a happy ending soon! 

      I really sympathise with with you don't give up sometimes we have to be aggressive to get a response . When we live in pain it's not the outcome we expected after THR surgery. Just don't loose hope and push for a solution until you get one. Don't wait or put it off it only gets worse and may cause more damage if not located sooner than later.


    • Posted

       Hi hope4cure.  Thank you for responding to me I had my right hip replacement done in 2005 and my left hip done in 2007 and for several years all was good and then slowly over the years these problems arose.  I have my follow up meet with my new ortho doctor and I’m hoping he will have a solution for this problem I do believe he is going to speak about a revision and although I really don’t want to have another surgery this .may be the only thing for me.  Believe me, I will not let this go to the point that I become an invalid. I’ve been out of work on disability and I am an active person and this has been really hard to be this inactive. Although it’s been great during the cold weather to be home in the house and not having to go out in the snow or cold, the good weather is just around the corner and I cannot imagine being shut in the house not being able to walk or do all the things that I’d like to do in the good weather .  I really appreciate hearing from you. It is good to know that I am not alone with this problem. Will update next week.  
    • Posted

      Hi hope4cure,

      how did your dr determine that you had a loose femoral component?  I too have had extensive X-rays and mri’s. Met  with a second opinion ortho doctor last week and he told me that everything is in place with the replacements that there is nothing he can do he cannot do a revision. He had no solution or answer for the pain and did not offer me any help in determining how to get rid of the pain.  This was such a waste of my time and money and effort because this doctor had no compassion whatsoever for my situation. Now I’m back to square one don’t know what to do. But I won’t give up as I can’t even walk 2 feet without pain so it has become worse. Now ice is not helping as before and sitting is also painful.  The only time I am not in pain is when I am laying down and am depressed to think that this is my life now!  I’ll keep you posted but I really did want to know if you could tell me how they found out you had a loose femoral component.  Thanks for your help 

    • Posted

      Hi, andreeadoria66

      I wonder how you feel now? I red your story, it's identical with mine.

      I had hip replaced in 2007 and since 2016 all went well. But then I noticed that I have a swallow in trohanterian area. I went to my ortho doctor and he did an aspiration to the bursa, send the liquid to be tested in the lab... Nothing came out, the fluid was clean.

      But the swallow came back after the aspiration, so he did a surgery and removed the bursa. I stayed in hospital 3 weeks and did antibiotics...I came home and 2 months later the swallow appeared again.. Now with pain and barely walking. Since then, I stay at home with ice all day on my leg and antiinflamatory med. I don't know what to do and who to address. I hope you had a better luck and resolved the problem.

    • Posted

      I do not travel any longer  by air either, prefer to drive. Do not like to be dehumanized by the TSA. I have bilateral hips and do not like going through security any longer. 

      I developed trochanteric bursitis after my 2nd THR.  The first THR was due to arthritis and was a anterior procedure .. incision on the front of the hip.  Surgery and recoup was a breeze. No problem with that hip at all. 

      The second was performed after a trauma injury (fall resulted in broken hip) and was a different approach.  Incision is located on the side of hip... I was told because of trauma an anterior could not be performed. Right from the get-go I was not comfortable with that 2nd hip.  There was a 'grinding' pain sensation from the first time I walked on it.  That grinding eventually turned into what was later diagnosed as Trocanteric bursitis. So called recovery was 6 months. X-ray of the hip and implant show no problem.. I have had steroid shots twice and both times made no difference.  I had rehab which didn't help either.  I have been told surgery to remove the bursa is not recommended and that the problem could become worse.  I was also informed that an MRI could not be done  because  the implant 'scatters' the image..  So here I pain, can't sit for any period of time and walking is a problem. I have been to my state's medical school clinic and they confirmed the above...I am in good physical condition otherwise except for this damn bursitis.  Can not do what I'd like to do - garden, walk with my dog, etc and am one unhappy individual.

    • Posted

      Claudia, it's too bad that you are having such a hard time after your second THR. I think you can get help for your problems.

      First, let me point out that you CAN have MRI's done on replacement joints. There is a specialized kind of MRI called MARS, which stands for Metal Artifact Reduction Sequence. I've had it done on my THR hip to diagnose why I had such pain and could not balance at all on my surgical leg alone, even 5 months post-op. Other people on this forum and other forums have had it done as well.

      My original surgeon could not see anything wrong with my hip, since the X-rays didn't show a problem. X-rays only show bones with accuracy, not soft tissue. He had no knowledge of what could be wrong with soft-tissues in my hip, so I had to go for a second opinion. I found a great orthopedic surgeon who ordered the MARS MRI, did a physical exam, and diagnosed torn gluteal tendons. He did surgery to repair them, and did a bursectomy as well. I am now 1 ¾ years post-op from that and I walk pretty well, can balance on the surgical leg alone, and have way less pain, much improved from when I could only walk painfully with walking aids, or with a terrible limp if I didn't use the aids. I have my life back!

      You could also have a diagnostic musculoskeletal ultrasound to determine what is going on in your hip. I cannot understand why your state's medical school clinic doesn't know about MARS MRI or ultrasound for diagnosis. This is not rocket science, and there should be a qualified orthopedic physician/surgeon who can figure out what is wrong with you and give you a treatment plan. There are many muscles, ligaments and tendons in the hip/ thigh area, and things can go wrong with every one of them. I would suggest that you keep on trying to find a professional who can help you.

      I had an antero-lateral approach for my THR, and I would definitely NOT have that again if I need one in my other hip. From what I have read, the kinds of problems that you and I have had are more common with that approach.

      Here is the article from Patient about your diagnosis. If the steroid shots didn't give you any pain relief at all, that is indicative that perhaps your diagnosis is wrong. You should be able to get your life back, too!

    • Posted

      You have no idea how happy I am to have read your reply.  I printed out what you wrote and am going to make an appointment again with the U of Florida med school Ortho Clinic. I will NOT GO BACK to the doc who did the original surgery on the bad hip.    One way or another I need to get to the bottom of the prob.  I think the diagnosis of bursitis is an excuse coming from  these docs...They don't really know the whole story... don't dive into the problem...and brush it off as bursitis...

      Again, Thank YOU SO MUCH...

    • Posted

      You are so welcome, Claudia! I am paying it forward, since the first thread that I started on this forum was when I was about 5 months post-THR, with the problems I described above. A wonderful person posted on my thread and was right-on about what was ailing me. It gave me direction to research and initiative to find a surgeon who could help me. I am going to personal-message you with my second surgeon's website, which describes many soft-tissue issues in the hip. Maybe it will be of some help to you.

    • Posted

      I sent the message. His website just keeps getting better and better!
    • Posted

      HI AnnieK:

      I am new to this forum, but just returned from my surgeon's office with the same bursitis diagnosis. Wait it out, take NSAIDs consistently, ice, physical therapy, massage, etc.  I've been doing all those things on my own since April 2018.  I am now 1 year post, and have so much pain. Can you forward the surgeon's website to me?  I would love to do more research on my own.  I do not blame my surgeon, he is wonderful and I think wants to help me in any way he can. Given that, some suggestions might be helpful.  Thank you in advance. 

    • Posted

      Kathy, I sent you a private message with the info you wanted. Best of luck to you in getting this treated.
    • Posted

      AnnieK Can you send me the info on the soft tissue issues of the hip that you sent to Kathy? Thanks. Still having pain after THR last Dec.!

    • Posted

      Sure! I'll send you a private message right away!

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