Greater trochanter bursitis pain syndrome in females with chronic low back pain and sciatica

Acta Orthop Belg. 2004 Oct;70(5):423-8.


Trochanteric bursitis is a clinical condition which simulates major hip diseases and low back pain, it may also mimic nerve root pressure syndrome. Patients with greater trochanteric bursitis pain syndrome (GTBPS) usually suffer from pain radiating to the posterolateral aspect of the thigh, paraesthesiae in the legs, and tenderness over the iliotibial tract.. The purpose of this study is to indicate the similarity between the clinical features of the GTBPS and those of chronic low back pain, and to highlight the importance of diagnosing GTBPS in patients complaining of low back conditions. Three hundred female patients were included in this prospective study. All patients complained about chronic low back pain or sciatica and had a failed long term conservative treatment. Local injection of the tender peritrochanteric area was only done in half of the patients (group 1). Patients were required to answer the Oswestry Disability Index Questionnaire during all periods of follow-up. Patients of group 1 had a better clinical outcome (p < 0.0005) than the patients in group 2 where no injection was done. We conclude that greater trochanter bursitis pain syndrome is a frequent syndrome which may be associated with low back symptoms. Patients with a long standing history of low back pain and sciatica should be routinely checked for GTBPS. GTBPS is easy to diagnose and can be treated. Peritrochanteric infiltration with glucocorticoids mixed with 2% lidocaine relieves patients from their symptoms for a long period of time. Recurrence should always be expected, but treatment may be repeated.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Bursitis / diagnosis*
  • Bursitis / therapy
  • Cohort Studies
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Disability Evaluation
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hip Joint / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Low Back Pain / diagnosis*
  • Low Back Pain / therapy
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain Measurement
  • Physical Examination
  • Probability
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sciatica / diagnosis*
  • Sciatica / therapy
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Syndrome