Friday, March 29, 2019

Chronic Trochanteric Bursitis and Me

Guys. For at least the last ten years, I've been had a real pain in the keester.


Have I whined about my chronic trochanteric bursitis lately? No? Well. Pour yourselves a big cup of coffee and pull up a chair. I could use a few shoulders to whine on. I promise to reciprocate whenever you need someone, ok?

So. My keester. Or, more accurately, my bursae over the outer bump of my femur bone near the hip. It looks like this:

Well. A synovial bursa (plural bursae or bursas) is a small fluid-filled sac lined by synovial membrane with an inner capillary layer of viscous synovial fluid (similar in consistency to that of a raw egg white). It provides a cushion between bones and tendons and/or muscles around a joint. This helps to reduce friction between the bones and allows free movement. Bursae are found around most major joints of the body.

So my superficial trochanteric bursa over both hips have been chronically inflamed -- called trochanteric bursitis -- for a very long time. For most people, the inflammation can be conquered by the use of ice, rest, strengthening one's core muscles, and a one-time injection of steroids into the bursa. But, of course, my bursae are remarkably stubborn. Irritable. Problematic. And none of those interventions provided long term solutions.

They're acting kind of like BICJ. Hmmmm. Makes me wonder if she's responsible for this.....

Anyway, for the last decade or so, the only thing that calms my cranky little sacks is regular steroid injections. I get them every three months or so like clockwork and they provide awesome relief.

Except, the last two sets of injections didn't. As a matter of fact, before my most recent injections, I had to resort to using a cane to support my left hip and leg. Which made me just as cranky as my bursae. So I made an appointment with Dr. Young Guy to discuss the situation.

"Why why why why WHY?! I have done everything that I am supposed to do to make this better! I exercise, I have lost weight, and I ice pack the heck out of my darned hips."

He smiled and sighed. "I know. But, you know that Sjogren's is a connective tissue type disease, and I guess this is probably what's happening."

"So am I stuck with this cane for good?"

"Not necessarily. Having your bursa removed might give you a lot of relief."

"You can function without your bursae?"

"Yup. It isn't recommended unless the injections aren't working anymore, and I think you are just about at that point. We'd need to get an MRI first, then I would refer you to a surgeon. What do you think?"

I looked at my cane, rubbed my painful hip, and nodded. "Let's go for it."

So it appears that the possibility of surgery may be ahead of me. I haven't had my MRI yet, so the referral has not been made for the surgery, but it's in the works. I'll keep y'all posted. You can read more about a trochanteric bursectomy here. 


Kelly said...

Oh, Julia, may you get some true relief from this pain so that you may then go out and work in that beautiful garden of which you spoke in your last post.

mcspires said...

Of couse no one ever wants a surgery, but man oh man, if this could give you relief, this might be just the ticket. I hope the MRI allows the surgery to be scheduled. I always like to read your posts, they are always informative. Thanks for sharing the pain in your kester.

Melody said...

Have you ever had cold laser done? When I was having bursitis issues, and they were just as painful as you described, I got tired of getting injections so my chiropractor suggested ultrasound. It worked pretty well. One day he suggested we try cold laser.Even though my insurance considered it experimental I gladly paid the $25 to have it done. It's been several years and I'm doing fine. I also found some shoes that made a world of difference - Crocks Skylar Toning shoes. They are wonderful! Whenever I start having knee and hip problems I start wearing them. Unfortunately they don't make them anymore. You can still find them online here and there. I've written to the company and asked them to bring them back as an orthopedic shoe. Maybe if more people ask they'll do it. I wish you well!

annie said...

So sorry you're going through more painful health issues. I know that cortisone is a temporary solution and you hope it will help cure the problem and help the pain.

I am going through my own hip/bursitis pain problems, and just awaiting for an MRI appointment shortly so I can get my first cortisone treatment. I also suffer from osteoporosis. Do you have that, Julia? Thanks for the info on the bursa, as i did not know they could remove this without touching bone. Hopefully it's not too invasive.

Keep us posted and good luck.