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AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2013 Nov;201(5):1083-6. doi: 10.2214/AJR.12.10038.

Sonography of greater trochanteric pain syndrome and the rarity of primary bursitis.

Author information

1
1 Department of Radiology, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, 132 South 10th St, Ste 796 C, Philadelphia, PA 19107.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Greater trochanteric pain syndrome is a common condition with clinical features of pain and tenderness at the lateral aspect of the hip. Diagnosing the origin of greater trochanteric pain is important because the treatment varies depending on the cause. We hypothesized that sonographic evaluation of sources for greater trochanteric pain syndrome would show that bursitis was not the most commonly encountered abnormality.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

We performed a retrospective review of musculoskeletal sonographic examinations performed at our institution over a 6-year period for greater trochanteric pain syndrome; completed a tabulation of the sonographic findings; and assessed the prevalence of trochanteric bursitis, gluteal tendon abnormalities, iliotibial band abnormalities, or a combination of findings. Prevalence of abnormal findings, associations of bursitis, gluteal tendinosis, gluteal tendon tears, and iliotibial band abnormalities were calculated.

RESULTS:

The final study population consisted of 877 unique patients: 602 women, 275 men; average age, 54 years; and age range, 15-87 years). Of the 877 patients with greater trochanteric pain, 700 (79.8%) did not have bursitis on ultrasound. A minority of patients (177, 20.2%) had trochanteric bursitis. Of the 877 patients with greater trochanteric pain, 438 (49.9%) had gluteal tendinosis, four (0.5%) had gluteal tendon tears, and 250 (28.5%) had a thickened iliotibial band.

CONCLUSION:

The cause of greater trochanteric pain syndrome is usually some combination of pathology involving the gluteus medius and gluteus minimus tendons as well as the iliotibial band. Bursitis is present in only the minority of patients. These findings have implications for treatment of this common condition.

PMID:
24147479
DOI:
10.2214/AJR.12.10038
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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