Nutrient Cures

Relief of Hip Bursitis

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Relief of Hip Bursitis

If you have bursitis you know the tender, swollen area is like a hot balloon that plagues your life and limits your movement. I have had chronic bursitis in my hips for years and have found some innovative ways to deal with it. Over time it has improved. These ideas are compiled from my own years of research, trial and error. You will not find this list compiled anywhere else. This is not info that is simply copied from other websites. If you need relief of hip bursitis, knee, shoulder, elbow or any other bursitis, please check out these methods, supplements and treatments.

First of All, How Do I Know I Have Bursitis?

Bursitis causes inflammation, tenderness and in some cases redness. When mild it could just cause tenderness with nothing visible. Moderate bursitis causes noticeable inflammation and can be an impediment to normal activities. Severe bursitis can cause dramatic swelling with the area becoming hot and red and the swollen area protruding so it is visible even when clothed.

What Are the Types of Hip Bursitis?

Trochanteric Bursitis

The most common form of bursitis in the hip is trochanteric bursitis. This is the form of bursitis I am referring to when I say “hip bursitis”. Trochanteric bursitis is the swelling of the trochanteric bursa which is located on the outermost part of the hip which is called the greater trochantar which is at the top of the femur bone. If you are not sure of this location, think of the widest part of your hip. With serious bursitis, the hip appears even larger and sticks out more to the side. With mild bursitis there will be tenderness but no visible change in size. Bursitis is variable however and during the course of the day or when the area is aggravated, the swelling can increase.

Iliopsoas Bursitis

The Iliopsoas bursa is located in the groin area right at inside of your leg. This bursitis is less common than trochanteric bursitis.

Ischial Bursitis

The Ischial or Ischiogluteal bursa is located at the “sit bone” in the buttocks. If you have Ischial bursitis is can be painful to sit on hard surfaces or ride a bike. You can get extremely “saddle sore” if you have ischial bursitis.

Diagram of bursitis locations in the hip.

The Most Common Hip Bursitis is Trochanteric Bursitis.

Is It Bursitis or Arthritis?

It can be hard to tell the difference between arthritis and bursitis if you don’t have experience with them in the past. Some types of arthritis like rheumatoid arthritis can can cause inflammation and tenderness. It is best to get a diagnosis from a doctor if you are not sure which you have. With bursitis there isn’t generally pain in the joint itself but in the bursa which is located outside the joint. It can be hard to tell the difference however and arthritis can cause bursitis. Mild bursitis without a lot of swelling can be harder to differentiate from arthritis. The key symptom of severe bursitis is a balloon like swelling of the bursa. With hip bursitis this can cause a dramatic swelling on the outside of the hip that is so large it can be seen through clothing. Some websites will tell you that long lasting pain is arthritis since bursitis is always short lived. That is not true of chronic bursitis. That is the reason for this post. Chronic bursitis is poorly understood and often ignored so the advice found online is often incorrect.

What is Chronic Bursitis and Why Can’t My Doctor Treat It?

Bursitis is often dismissed as a common problem and not taken seriously. Doctors told me it would go away but I had it for years. Most bursitis is supposed to be acute (short term) but mine was chronic (long term). Bursitis is inflammation of the bursa which is a fluid filled sac that cushions the area near tendons and joints in the body. There are hundreds of bursas in the body so bursitis can occur all over from large joints to seemingly random places like the ‘sit bones’ that get irritated from riding a bike (Ischial bursitis) .

Septic and Aseptic Bursitis

Most bursitis is aseptic meaning caused by overuse or injury. Some bursitis can be septic meaning there is an infection. Septic bursitis may need to be treated with antibiotics and surgery or aspiration (draining the bursa). For this post we will just focus on the much more common aseptic bursitis which does not need surgical or antibiotic intervention.

Acute Bursitis

Acute bursitis is usually caused by injury. Trauma such as falling on your hip could cause acute bursitis. Usually with proper rest and basic treatment such as icing and anti-inflammatories it will go away. Acute bursitis can also be caused by overuse or inflammation.

Chronic Bursitis

Chronic bursitis seems to be poorly understood by the medical community. It does not necessarily have a simple cause such as a specific injury. It can be caused by repetitive use of the joint and or an underlying inflammatory condition. There is no resolution of the condition in a short time and it is unknown how long it may go on. Some people have it for years or are prone to get it in different joints over time. This is because an underlying condition for inflammation exists in the body that allows bursitis to occur. Therefore it may be in a hip and later crop up in a knee, elbow or shoulder for no apparent reason. The location and severity can change over time.

There a few standard recommendations for medical treatment but they have drawbacks and side effects that may be worse in the end. I believe this is because the focus is on acute bursitis and the treatments for a short term condition are often not effective for a long- term chronic condition .

Why Common Treatments for Bursitis Don’t Work for Chronic Bursitis

Many doctor prescribed treatments for chronic bursitis don’t work because it is assumed to be acute. The cause of the condition is completely different in a body-wide inflammatory condition than an acute injury caused occurrence.

One common treatment for bursitis is a shot of cortisone in the affected bursa. This is a go-to procedure that you will see on many online sites and recommended by many doctors. This is supposed to fix the condition but in people with chronic bursitis, it may only help for a short time. Even if it could fix that case of bursitis you would need to get it redone every time the condition popped up in another joint. This is a painful, expensive and often pointless treatment for chronic bursitis anyway. In fact, cortisone injections can actually make the problem worse. I have read cases where people say it fixed their problem but it appears to me (in my non-medical opinion) most or all of those were acute cases. Many other accounts describe no help from cortisone injections or only a few weeks of help over years of suffering.

Why Can’t I Just Get A Cortisone Injection for Bursitis?

You certainly can. If it works for you, great! I would love to hear that you got relief. I have to admit I have not had a cortisone injection myself once I read about so many failures and learned about the side effects.

Cortisone injections can cause weakening of cartilage, tendon and bone (osteoporosis). Of course this risk is increased with repeated cortisone injections.

Cortisone can also cause raised blood sugar, weight gain, changes in mood and other serious conditions like Cushing’s Syndrome. The SoCal Regenerative Medical Clinic web page explains cortisone injection side effects. They offer new methods of treatment using stem cells and other modern options.

Another Treatment that Doctors may suggest is surgical removal of the bursa. This may work for some people but the problem is the bursa can just grow back. As with cortisone injections, if you have chronic bursitis, it could crop up in other joints over time. Surgical removal would only potentially help the location in which it was removed. You would probably not want to have multiple surgeries to remove multiple bursas over time, though I am sure someone has.

So How Can I Get Relief of Hip Bursitis and All Bursitis?

There are many possibly aids in getting relief of bursitis but here are the ones that I have found successful. This is NOT a complete list. Due to the root causes of inflammation being potentially large, there are many possible solutions as well. That is the good news!

I have tried the following methods with some success.

Ice and Gel Ice Packs

This is doctor recommended but they don’t do a good job of offering practical methods of applying it. Doctors may recommend holding a paper cup of ice (after you filled the cup with water and froze it solid) over the bursa. I am not joking. When a doctor recommenced this to me it sounded messy, wet and impractical. When I am at work how am I supposed to hold a wet, dripping paper cup of ice on my hip!

I use cold every single day for my bursitis and it is the single most effective method way to get relief. It is not the most practical but it can be implemented in many ways if you plan for it. For example, I sleep with cold gel packs under my hips (at the side where the bursa is located) every night. This combats the heat build up from the bed and blankets that trap your own body heat and aggravate a bursa. There are soft gel packs that don’t freeze solid and those that do freeze solid. The soft ones are flexible and very comfortable. You won’t even feel them there except for the soothing cold on your burning hips. The downside is the soft gel packs don’t stay cold as long as those that freeze solid. I have learned to use the solid ones but I lay them out in the freezer so they will freeze in a comfortable shape before they freeze. This takes a bit of practice but basically, I make sure they have a rounded depression and a sloping angle on the side that goes down to a fine edge that will comfortably fit under my hip. These will last most of the night. The same methods can be used for bursitis in the knee, elbow etc. If you don’t mind swapping them out you can use the soft ones that are more flexible.

You can get small gel ice packs to take with you during the day if you need them for sitting in a car seat or at work. For travel I am still learning what is allowed through airport security in this regard but you can use a zip lock bag and fill it with crushed ice at the airport after you go through security and before you get on the flight or ask for ice on the plane. Then you don’t have to worry about getting the gel packs through security (they likely have to be frozen solid but if they are not you may risk losing them as gel is not allowed).

I now keep some gel ice packs in the freezer and refrigerator at work just in case I need them.

Adjust Your Seating

This is tricky but basically you need to combat pressure and the build up of body heat wherever you sit if you have severe, chronic bursitis. Over time mine has finally gotten better so this is not so bad but when it was bad I had to be very careful where I sat.

  • Pick chairs that are not squishy and excessively padded. You don’t want to sink down into anything where body heat will build up. Most couches are too soft.
  • Don’t sit in chairs that are too narrow or have contoured sides that push on the side of your hip where the bursa is located. Pressure just like heat will trigger a flare and make it much worse.
  • Use a seat cushion to boost yourself up. I used a stadium cushion in my car for years to boost myself up and keep my hips away from the contoured sides of the seat. Contoured seats are the bane of my existence! Try finding a car without them now!  You can use a cushion on any chair to keep your hips away from contoured or soft edges.

Don’t Wear Tight or Stiff Pants

This is a big one too. Tight pants apply both pressure and encourage the build-up of body heat. These are the 2 big enemies of anyone with bursitis. They can also cause rubbing and irritation of seams over the sensitive area. It is really hard to give up jeans or other pants if you are used to them. I used to live in jeans and could not imagine not being able to wear them. Now I never wear jeans or stiff dress pants or any tight, stiff pant.

  • The loose trends in pants now (like the palazzo pant and other bohemian, loose, flowey styles for women) are a godsend! Men could find relief in loose shorts or other loose pants. That is generally easier for men since they can just wear a belt.
  • If you can wear skirts you will be set!
  • If you have to wear fitted pants make sure they are a light, breathable fabric that has considerable stretch so there is less pressure and heat on the bursa.

Don’t Sleep on Your Side

This may be hard for some and easy for others but if you can learn to sleep on your back instead of your side you will probably be more comfortable in the end. The pressure of sleeping on your side will likely aggravate hip bursitis. I used to sleep on my sides all the time but now I am strictly a back sleeper.

Topical Pain Relief For Bursitis

If you need some relief now, there are topical gels and lotions that can help. Some are so great I can feel instant relief and use them every day.

Arnica Gel

This is my number 1 recommendation for bursitis relief. I use arnica gel morning and night every single day. It works, has no side effects, is safe and all natural and doesn’t have the strong smell or potential for skin irritation of all the menthol products. This is a brand I have used for years.

Arnica is a flower that looks like a daisy. It grows wild in many mountainous areas including in Europe and the U.S. It is naturally anti-inflammatory.

To read more about arnica, how it works and about these two brands, here is my review of best arnica gel and cream for bursitis.

Menthol Lotions

These are so common you can find them anywhere. They may give you some relief and a cooling sensation.

Osmo Patch

These patches are very unique and work while you sleep. They actually draw the fluid out of the bursa! I know it sounds crazy but by using the concept of osmotic pressure, they draw fluid out and into the waterproof patch. In the morning you take the patch off and throw it away. The size of your bursa will actually go down as the fluid is drawn out.

There are some serious pros and cons with this method however.

Pros of the Osmo Patch:

  • Unlike any other home treatment it draws the fluid out of the bursa and relieves swelling and pressure.
  • It works while you sleep.
  • It is not a medication, there is nothing to take internally.
  • You don’t need a prescription though this was developed by a doctor to treat his own family.
  • Contains no steroids or other drugs.

Cons of Osmo Patch:

  • They are expensive.
  • They are smelly. The smell is like charcoal or creosote and gets pretty strong. It can make your clothes and bedding smell but it does wash out.
  • They can cause irritation if you have sensitive skin. I found I can be sensitive to the adhesive that sticks the edges to the skin. I position them so they are not underneath me where they will build up too much heat overnight and that helps but if you have really sensitive skin this might not work.
  • They can’t be used during the day since you don’t want them to come off and they also need to be in close contact with the skin to work.

Supplements for Relief of Bursitis

There are many supplements that may help with bursitis because there are many potential causes of chronic bursitis including wide spread inflammation as well as overuse of a joint, deformity causing irritation with movement etc.

Here are the supplements that have helped me.

Zinc for Bursitis

Zinc is a natural anti-inflammatory. It is a mineral required by the body but many of us have low levels. Zinc can be supplemented in many different forms including pills, capsules, drops and more.

Pros and Cons of Zinc

Pros:

  • Natural anti-inflammatory
  • Comes in many forms
  • Natural anti-viral that helps fight colds and other infections

Cons:

  • Can cause upset stomach if taken in high doses or without food

How To Use Zinc Supplements

I now use elemental zinc drops since I can more easily adjust the dose. Also, supplements in pill form are not absorbed well so much of the zinc probably goes to waste. I have no idea how much I am actually absorbing from a pill or capsule. With the drops I should be absorbing a higher proportion of the zinc.

The drops don’t taste good but they are not the worst. I just put them in water but you could add them to other beverages to help mask the taste. I am currently using much less than the recommended dose. I use 6 to 10 drops twice per day.

Incidental Discovery of Great Zinc Benefits

I discovered the benefits of zinc by accident since I noticed I always felt much better when I took Zicam. I took Zicam to fight off cold viruses but eventually I noticed when I used it my bursitis was feeling great! I looked it up and learned that zinc is an anti-inflammatory! Who knew! It would sure be useful if regular doctors could tell us things like this. They are not training in nutrition however and likely don’t even know this. I have some open minded doctors who are supportive of my discoveries but they admit they are not training in nutrition. If you have a naturopathic doctor they may be more informed about these kinds of treatments.

Here are the reasons many of us are deficient in zinc and other nutrients.

Natural Progesterone Cream

This is a complex issue but basically a lack of progesterone (or too much estrogen or estrogen mimickers) can cause inflammation. Supplementing with NATURAL progesterone can combat this effect and provide relief of hot flashes, night sweats, itching, rashes, bursitis and more.

WARNING: You should not experiment with natural progesterone if you don’t know what you are doing. Ideally you should find a doctor that specializes in hormone balancing. The trick is to find someone who uses natural progesterone like that from the wild yam which is used in several brands of progesterone creams on the market. I use this one and LOVE it. The key is to use enough to be effective. Using just a small amount can cause the level of estrogen to increase in response and actually aggravate your condition. I did a lot of research and learned that starting with a high dose right away can prevent this miserable effect that many people suffer due to using too low of a dose or out of an abundance of caution. I have never had a bad effect.

I have to say this stuff changed my life. It totally cured my night sweats and helps greatly with many other conditions including bursitis and itching caused by nerve issues. It also helps alleviate general aches and pains and tenderness caused by the hormone imbalance. I cannot manage without this product. I probably would not be able to keep my job if I did not have this.

I use about 6 pumps per day but how much you need is highly variable and I cannot recommend a dosage. You could get your levels checked and consult with a doctor before use. Beware however, many doctors do not understand hormones well and are likely to recommend a dose that may be too low in my observation.

Magnesium for Bursitis

Magnesium has over 300 uses in the human body. It is the most widely used mineral and crucial for life. Many people don’t get enough magnesium nowadays. This occurs for many reasons which you can read about here: Causes of Low Magnesium. In addition to helping prevent diabetes, heart disease and help the body deal with stress, magnesium can also help bursitis. Here is my review of different magnesium mineral forms, which ones you may want to use and which products I recommend. There are a range of options to suit different needs including supplement and topical formulas. What Form of Magnesium Should I Use?

There are a number of people who claim old-fashioned Milk of Magnesia cured their bursitis. There are better forms of magnesium to take for everyday use that don’t have the laxative effect of Milk of Magnesia. I have not tried regular Milk of Magnesia however so there may be something especially useful in it. I do not know if these people had acute or chronic bursitis.

Diet Change for Bursitis

Bursitis is an inflammatory condition and can be triggered by eating certain foods. Some foods are generally inflammatory and some may cause inflammation in certain individuals due to food allergies or sensitivities.

Inflammatory Causing Foods for Most People

  • Fried foods
  • Sugar
  • Spicy foods
  • High fat foods

Inflammation Causing Foods for Certain People

  • The Nightshade Family-Tomatoes, Peppers, Eggplant
  • Any food that you are allergic to that causes an inflammatory response. This could be certain proteins for some people, grains, nuts, strawberries, citrus, red wine (very common), pineapple and many more.  Some people including myself are sensitive to spices like turmeric (which is very popular right now) as well as cinnamon, cloves, ginger and paprika.

Healthy Foods May Cause Inflammation

There are many “healthy” foods that are touted as super foods with amazing benefits. They are great but if you are allergic to them they may do you more harm than good. Generally eating more fruits and vegetables is good for inflammation and it should always be our goal in general rather than eating lots of fried food or fast food with high fat. Just because something is a fruit or vegetable does not mean it won’t cause inflammation however.

These are just a few of the foods that can cause inflammation in certain people:

  • Pineapple (contains bromaline which is generally an anti-inflammatory). If you are allergic to it, pineapple can cause immediate swelling in joints with bursitis.
  • Turmeric (curcumin). This is one of the latest superfoods that is promoted for many health benefits. If you are allergic, as with any other food or spice, it can cause you much more pain than benefit.
  • Garlic. Great stuff but for some people it can cause inflammation.
  • Nuts. Once again, healthy but not if you are allergic or sensitive to them.
  • Red Wine. Great if you can have it but the tannins are one of the most potent inflammatories for people with histamine intolerance and just a sip or two can cause bursitis to flare.
  • Tea and Green Tea. Same story as above. Tea is very healthy in general but the tannins (like those in red wine) can cause inflammation for certain people like those with histamine intolerance.
  • Gluten. Even if you don’t have celiac disease you may have an inflammatory response to gluten.

You Need to Find the Diet for YOU

As you can see from the list above, there are many “healthy” foods that may be terrible for certain people. You have to find the foods that work for you personally. Just because turmeric is a miracle spice for some people does not mean you should have it.  You may love red wine but find that it is a trigger for inflammation. Don’t feel pressured to follow any specific diet based on other criteria. Find what works for you.

Summary Tips For Relief of Hip Bursitis

  • Avoid heat and pressure on the affected area. Heat and pressure trigger chronic bursitis to flare up. This includes avoiding tight fitting and stiff clothing and adding cushions to boost hips above chair seats.
  • Use cold to reduce inflammation. Ice, gel ice packs and any other source of cold can feel amazing and really help bring down swelling.
  • Use products for topical relief of bursitis such as arnica gel and Osmo patches reviewed here.
  • Try supplements for bursitis such as zinc which is a natural anti-inflammatory but don’t take it on an empty stomach.
  • Try changing your diet to avoid common inflammatory foods like fried food and eat more fruits and vegetables. Beware that many healthy foods can cause inflammation in certain people. Some examples are pineapple, tea, turmeric and ginger.

What Works For You?

There are many other vitamins and supplements that can help with bursitis but these are the ones that help me the most.

I hope this post has given you some help in finding relief of hip bursitis or any other bursitis. All the products listed here work for bursitis in general so it does not matter if your bursitis is located in your knee, shoulder or any other body part. I highly recommend you give these products a try and hope they provide great relief for you.

Please tell me what works for you and any thoughts or recommendations you have in the comments below. I would love to hear from you.

Note: I am not a doctor or medical professional. These recommendations are based on personal experience and research. Consult a doctor for a diagnosis and treatment options. 

Jessica

NutrientCures only offers honest reviews and never recommends a product we wouldn’t use ourselves everyday.  NutrientCures makes use of affiliate relationships with merchants such as Amazon Associates for monetization. This means when you click on links to various merchants on this site and make a purchase, this can result in a small commission that is credited to this site.

 

 

62 Comments

  1. Jim

    Hi Jessica. What an amazing informative article you have written. Unfortunately I suffer from Hip Bursitis and Osteoarthritis . It’s not much fun trying to get comfortable at night, particularly at bed time. I have a terrible issue with sleeping on my back, my doctor did tell me to do this however all my life I have suffered from terrible nightmares if I sleep that way, so inevitably I end up on my side and i pain. Sometimes I get out of bed at around 1 am in the morning and just sleep sitting up in the arm chair. I currently just take osteopanadol for my pain, But i’m inclined to try out some of the other brands you mention in the blog. All the best. Jim

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Jim,

      I have a few more tips and products to add to this post. I agree. I had to get used to sleeping on my back as well. I can only do it with a pillow under my knees, otherwise it hurts my back. You really need to find the right pillow as well (I am sure you know what I mean). I still have not found a brand I like and resort to using small, soft, throw pillows meant for couches since they fit better than regular pillows. 

      I will add an internal link on this post to my review of magnesium supplements since magnesium really helps bursitis as well. Here is the link in case you are interested. It discusses the different forms of magnesium (different mineral forms) as well as the supplement forms such as capsule, liquid, lotion etc. 

      https://nutrientcures.com/what-is-the-best-magnesium-supplement

      I hope you find relief one way or another. Bursitis is the pits. 

      Jessica

      Reply
  2. Rina

    It seems to be the case that some treatments of bursitis is not the same for everyone. Thank you for expaining a few things for me. I have been searching the internet for articles on the subject and came across your article. I am not sure what I am suffering from yet but I will be talking to my doctor about it soon. However, there are alot of similarities to my ailment that you have described here, so will be interested in what my doctor will say about it in a few days.

    Thanks again for sharing

    Rina  

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hi Rina, 

      Bursitis is more common in women than men and more often occurs in middle age but can occur at any point in life. I hope you find a solution! I will be adding a bit more information to the post including the use of magnesium for bursitis with a link to another post on my site. Here it is in case you are ever interested: 

      https://nutrientcures.com/what-is-the-best-magnesium-supplement

      Thank you for stopping by and I hope you get better soon!

      Jessica

      Reply
  3. TimMoto

    I have either Bursitis or Arthritis in my right hip and apparently am doing all the wrong things.  I drink red wine and drink lots of green tea.  So my diet is not conducive to healing, at least not at present.  I’ll  need to get a good diagnosis from a local doctor before deciding what path to take.  

    Controlling the pain without surgery would be optimal of course, so I’ll follow up with the doctor and take this information with me for reference.  This post comes at the perfect time for me.  I’ve been plagued with this condition for over a year and it tends to flair up then go into remission for a short time. I’ve been taking anti-inflammatories but they are costly without decent prescription coverage.  

    I did get a cortisone injection about 3 months ago but it’s effectiveness wore off very quickly.

    Thank you again for this timely article.  I’m grateful for the detailed information and treatments recommended. 

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hi Tim,

      I am sorry you are dealing with bursitis or arthritis. I should clarify that red wine and green tea can make it worse if you are someone who is sensitive to them but that is not the case for everyone. Do you notice it getting worse if you have wine? Hopefully you just have the hip pain but not the histamine/food sensitivities as well. 

      I am curious how long the cortisone helped you. Did it give you much relief? How long did it last?

      Thanks for stopping by and for your comments,

      Jessica

      Reply
  4. Todd Matthews

    I would meet people at the gym who have bursitis, either in the hips or elsewhere and they’re the first to tell me what kind of chronic issues they’d be going through. Many have used gels to remedy the condition, which greatly improved their performance in the gym. Chronic bursitis doesn’t have to hold people back, especially if they’re active. It’s really amazing what gels can do. 

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thanks Todd. 

      Yes, the arnica gel is great. Menthol can help as well. Thanks for your comments here. 

      Jessica

      Reply
  5. RoDarrick

    Hello, this is a golden piece of information and I will surely share it to as many social platforms as possible. My niece suffers from hip bursitis and she has been having a hard time living with it so I decided to carry out a little research to help her with the knowledge about it and how best to cope with it and fortunately I came across this post. So glad I did. I’ll suggest this post to her and I’m sure it will help her out. Thanks

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello and thank you. I am so glad you found this and that it may help your niece. This is the compilation of years of research in order to help deal with my own bursitis so I hope helps her too. 

      Jessica

      Reply
  6. Aly

    This is really interesting and could be helpful for a couple of my family members. It’s very surprising to learn that there are “healthy” foods that can make things worse and cause inflammation!! I guess it’s a matter of trial and error, as each person is going to have their own unique response to different treatments. Ice can be a hassle to keep around and apply, but fortunately, it is a simple remedy that can be found about anywhere, and it does usually provide some relief! Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Aly,

      Yes, ice is a mess. I stopped using real ice and now only use gel ice packs since they are reusable and not messy. 

      I was surprised to learn just how bad some “healthy” foods were to me too.

      Thanks for stopping by,

      Jessica

      Reply
  7. Eddie

    Hey Jessica,

    This is a great article. Very informative and thorough. I never realized that hip bursitis was so common. Is this something I can develop over time? Are there certain activities that I can do that will can induce it? Thankfully, I came across your site. I’ll bookmark it Incase i need to access this as a resource in the future.

    Thanks,

    Eddie

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Eddie,

      Lucky for you hip bursitis is more common in women than men. I don’t think it is very well understood however. Some causes are:

      *Injury (trauma to the hip like falling on it)

      *Overuse such as repetitive use from running or bicycling if you are prone to get bursitis.

      *Having one leg be longer than the other creating an imbalance and strain on the hip and tendon.

      *Widespread inflammation that can affect any part of the body. Some people have migrating bursitis that pops up in different parts of the body. 

      *Arthritis

      Hopefully you never get it!

      Thanks for stopping by and for your question. 

      Jessica

      Reply
  8. SeunJeremiah

    Thanks for this informative article,  well I have a friend who complain of swelling  and pain to the outer thigh that spreads down to the knee. Walking intensifies the pain, limping is common, and climbing steps can become difficult, is this an acute bursitis or a chronic one and what treatment would you recommend to be given to such? 

    Reply
    1. admin

      What you are describing could be either acute or chronic bursitis. The difference is in how long it lasts. How long has your friend had this?

      All the things I recommend here can benefit both acute or chronic bursitis. 

      Thank you for stopping by,

      Jessica

      Reply
  9. Christine

    My mum suffer from hip bursities and she does not like to see doctor. She uses gel to relief the pain. This is the reason why I search the internet for more information.
    Thank you for sharing so much information about hip bursities. There are a few things I would like my mum to try. I will tell her sleeping on her back will reduce the pain. You mentioned about Zicam, I will buy for her.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Christine,

      I am so glad you found some information to help your Mom. I hope she gets relief soon.

      Thank you,

      Jessica

      Reply
  10. Michel

    I have had Bursitis on the hip and it was no fun. It lasted about a year, and at first, I was worried that it was arthritis. The doctor said it was caused by overworking that area, so I had to take it really carefully for a long time.

    I got one cortisone injection, but it didn’t last long, and I realized it was just masking the symptoms.

    Luckily the condition did get better by managing my exercise regime better, sleeping on the other side and not putting any pressure on the side of my leg. I am glad it hasn’t returned again, and this article brought back bad memories, but I wish I had read it back then, as I didn’t even think of applying ice back then.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thanks for sharing your experience with bursitis Michel. I don’t understand why some of these basic tips are not given out. I see endless recommendations to use compression but in my experience compression makes bursitis worse. Perhaps it is different for acute bursitis whereas I had chronic. 

      I am seeing many comments from people who said cortisone injections didn’t work for long. I am glad yours cleared up.

      Jessica

      Reply
  11. Harry

    My mother is currently suffering from a mild case of hip bursitis and she is in a lot of pain when she tries to sit down on a chair and sometimes even the bed…

    We are going to visit the doctor tomorrow but it’s nice that I could find such an amount of information in order to know what we might be dealing with as well as cress reference some of your information with our doctor.

    Thanks a lot!

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Harry,

      I hope your mother finds relief soon. Thank you for your comments.

      Jessica

      Reply
  12. water life

    Hello

    I always thought that bursitis and arthritis were the same. Your topic was an eye-opener for those who suffer from inflammations of the isch, as they can understand the difference after reading your article, which is highly informative and enlightening. I even didn’t know that some healthy foods, such as tea and curcumin may cause inflammations. 

    Thank you for your tips in order to relief from pain. 

    Thodoris

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thank you Thodoris. I am glad this information is useful for you.

      Jessica

      Reply
  13. Sondra M

    Hi Jessica, a friend of mine has become concerned that she may have chronic bursitis.    Her husband is super frustrated because the doctors are not sure what is causing the swelling and pain.   She is frustrated also.   Arthritis was one suggestion. 

    Since they live in an area with limited internet connection, I was trying to do some online research for ways to alleviate the pain.   Thank you for taking the time to share some suggestions of what may or may not work to prevent the swelling and to alleviate the pain.    

    It sounds like this is a condition that you have to patiently figure out the best way to manage.    I hope that you can minimize the pain that you are suffering.  

    Maybe someday medical research will figure out a more definitive way to prevent or resolve chronic bursitis.    

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Sondra,

      Medical understanding of bursitis seems very limited at this point. Cortisone injections are the only generally recommended treatment that I have seen. I have heard from many people that their cortisone injections for bursitis gave very brief relief. They all want to find better solutions. 

      I cannot imagine being without these products such as the arnica gel I review here. 

      Thank you for your comments,

      Jessica

      Reply
  14. Alblue

    Thank you for this valuable information. My aunt suffered from Hip Bursitis and didn’t take any real medical treatment because the doctor said it will be cured after some time. It took around two years to fully cure it after my aunt use certain gel regularly (forgot the brand name). 

    Reading this article make me want to change my chair into ergonomic one. I feel a bit uncomfortable sitting in my current home chair. I want to ask a question. For people who don’t suffer from Hip Bursitis, is it safe to sleep on their side? Thank you in advance for your answer.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Yes, it should be fine to sleep on your side if you don’t have bursitis. Many people only have bursitis in one hip so they can sleep on the opposite side anyway. 

      I am glad your aunt got better and no longer has bursitis. 

      Reply
  15. Pentrental

    Your experience and knowledge is invaluable for those who are affected by bursitis. I know now the symptoms of bursitis. It sounds pretty uncomfortable. So relief would definitely be something I’d seek out. It’s good to know in advance, in case I or someone I know comes up with bursitis. The Arnica Gel products look pretty solid. I think I’d choose the Hyland’s Muscle since it has a 6 pack. I’ll keep your post saved in case I find out if anyone has bursitis, now that I know what to look for, thank you!

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thank you Pentrental. I am just about to order more of the Hyland’s Muscle Therapy gel myself. I am glad this is useful information for you.

      Jessica

      Reply
  16. Riaz Shah

    Arnica gel, I’ve heard of that! And I live halfway across the world in Malaysia, my uncle travels a lot and he’s mentioned of it before although I never actually focused much on it until a close friend of mine fell ill with possible Bursitis with his huge marks. I love the fact that they use natural ingredients, does Arnica Gel has any odour we should know of?

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Riaz,

      There is a bit of a odor from arnica gel but the specific smell depends on which brand you get. They both have a slight odor that is not strong but more like a mild plant smell. There are no scents added. 

      These arnica gels do not have the strong smell that you get with menthol products. 

      Thanks for stopping by,

      Jessica

      Reply
  17. Charles

    Thanks for this article. I never had hip bursitis before but I believe I had shoulder bursitis. Like you said about the ice, the ice helped my shoulder a lot too. One thing I do is I take cold showers. I would go in a tub or a pool of cold water if that were more convenient for me. Do you think that would help with hip bursitis? I would think that using the Frozen cup of water would be kind of tricky. That kind of thing works well for me on my medial epicondylitis. I had a solid ice pack thing that I would massage in the elbow. But for my shoulders I needed more of a ice pack that went around them. I don’t know what I would do for hips but you gave some good suggestions. Do we have any kind of ice pack pants?

    I like what you said about becoming a back sleeper. I did the same thing for my shoulder, switching from sleeping on my side which hurt my shoulder to sleeping on my back now and my shoulders are a lot better from that too. Sometimes it’s harder to sleep that way but you’re right it’s worth making the transition.

    I never knew that about zinc. I will have to look into my zinc levels. Thanks a lot Jessica good article you really put a lot into it.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thank you Charles. There are some ice pack products that can be strapped on around the hips, knees etc. but I have not seen pants. That would be a great invention. 

      I am glad you found this information useful and I hope your shoulder bursitis improves. 

      Jessica

      Reply
  18. gr8megawinner

    The Nutrient Cures blog on Relief of Hip Bursitis. It is very similar to Arthritis the first one is short term and arthritis is usually long term. However, there is also bursitis which could not be determined by even medical doctors and only those who suffered from it could differentiate like the author in this blog. It is still not so clear to me but what is amazing is she has spelled out the do’s and dont’s like Don’t wear tight clothes, don’t sleep on your side, Adjust seats and sitting positions. There is some relief like topical cream, menthol lotions progesterone cream zinc, but zin has pros and cons. I would rather suggest using other remedies such as arnica gel. There are the medical terms to different parts of Bursitis such as  Ischial. basically, bursitis affects hip, knee and shoulder areas. although iliopsoas Bursitis affects the groin areas. Overall it is good to understand a little of this ailment as it would be preponderance among the aged. I am still relatively young although to be honest, it is my first encounter with Bursitis. I am grateful because knowing is the first defense of prevention. 

    Reply
    1. admin

      I am so glad you found this useful. 

      Thank you.

      Reply
  19. Jordan Smith

    Thanks for taking time to write on this Jessica; I lived with my cousin, and she has this excruciating pain in both hips from hip bursitis. she cannot walk or climb stairs, she made me realize how difficult it is to live with. She tried some drugs and Injections, but they had no effect on her. she’s so demented with the pain. A little research about the way forward brought me here. I will make sure she try this methods together with the Arnica Gel/Osmo Patch and I will definitely give you feedback. Thanks again.

    Jordan.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Jordan,

      Bursitis is awful but once you understand it and how to work around it and manage the swelling it becomes a little easier. I hope your cousin can try the products and tips I suggest here and that she feels better soon!

      Jessica

      Reply
  20. Feochadan

    I have no experience with bursitis but I always find it so interesting when natural remedies work oh so much better than prescription drugs.  Cortisone sounds like something to seriously steer clear of with all of the side effects.  Thank you so much for suggesting a combination of no-cost remedies to natural remedies for those suffering from this debilitating disease.  I can imagine how bad it must be after watching my mother go through rheumatoid arthritis and all of the things the doctors did with her that ended up making it worse.

    Reply
    1. admin

      I agree. I have known so many people with arthritis and the drugs don’t seem to do much! They can have terrible side effects as well. I am glad that by the time I am old enough to have arthritis I will have already learned how to treat it myself due to my experience with bursitis. 

      Thank you for your thoughts and for stopping by,

      Jessica

      Reply
  21. Gomer

    I appreciate the tips and suggestions here. You’re right, maybe I need to consult a physician and have a blood test to determine whether I am suffering from Bursitis or Arthritis with this pain. I’ve got a lot of pains, and I suspect the energy drinks and coffee that I’ve been drinking while blogging are the culprits of this. I really feel bad, as I am still single, dating a girl, and now feeling old I’m only 39.

    About your suggestions of nutrients, that Zinc can help, currently I’m taking multivitamins + minerals supplement which contain Zinc. I’m taking Centrum, will that help alleviate this?

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello, 

      I don’t think a blood test will tell if you have arthritis or bursitis. This is not something that can be seen in the blood. A doctor might ask you questions and help determine which it is however based on your answers and an exam. 

      The multivitamin you are taking may help but the problem with many vitamin pills is that they are not absorbed well in the body. That is why I use liquid zinc drops. I have not taken Centrum myself and I really can’t say if it will help. 

      I hope you find something that helps you feel better.

      Jessica

      Reply
  22. Henderson

    Hello and I’m glad to meet you. This information is very helpful and I’m so glad I found your post. My mum has hip bursitis and I feel it has to do with old age but you have clarified that some foods are inflammatory and that might be the cause, she finds it hard to walk around sometimes and feels pains around her waist. Thank you for all the tips to eradicate it. Through your educative post, I will educate her on what to do. Thank you!!

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello,

      I am glad your found this useful. There is usually some underlying physical reason for bursitis but once you have it something like a food allergy can exacerbate it and cause it to flare up. 

      I hope your Mom feels better. 

      Jessica

      Reply
  23. Dane

    Thanks for this educational post. I have heard quite alot about bursitis from friends, but I really don’t get as much information as I want about it. I’m glad to have come across this post which have given me so much details about it and useful suggestions on how to manage it. Now I’ll be able to tell people about it with details

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Dane,

      I am glad this post has useful information for you. It seems most websites have the same few bits of information over and over but nothing else that is unique. I hope to always offer as much useful information as possible to help people find real solutions. 

      Thank you for stopping by,

      Jessica

      Reply
  24. Linda

    It is such a blessing when navigating online; one never knows what content they’ll find. This is information I had no idea about; cmpletly new to me. I hadn’t heard of bursitis before. However, am oh so very glad to have read this. It seams very imprtant to take precautions; this ice tip is good t consider. Will totally take it. 

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thank you Linda. I am glad this is useful information for you. 

      Jessica

      Reply
  25. Tania Halpin

    Hi Jessica,

    This is an excellent and informative post. I had never heard of bursitis until I read this and now understand a whole lot more about it. I was on the hunt for the pain in my partners hip and now feel fully informed. He’ll be heading off to the doctors pronto now!

    Thanks again.

    Tania.

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thanks Tania. Did you get a diagnosis for your partner’s hip pain?

      Jessica

      Reply
  26. Tania Halpin

    Hi Jessica,

    This is an excellent and informative post. I had never heard of bursitis until I read this and now understand a whole lot more about it. I was on the hunt for the pain in my partners hip and now feel fully informed. He’ll be heading off to the doctors pronto now!

    Thanks again.

    Tania.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Tania,

      I am so glad this was useful for you. 

      I hope your partner’s pain gets better. 

      Thanks for stopping by,

      Jessica

      Reply
  27. jpaliskis

    Hello,

    What an informative article! I think I have arthritis in my right hand two fingers ( maybe bursitis?) The joints of one of my fingers are very painful and swollen. But, I want to share the story: one lady ( mom’s friend ) had big bumps on both hips, and they were huge and swollen; also, these bumps were moving up and down. I didn’t know what are they.  Now, I understand they were bursitis.

    Anyway, your article has a lot of tips, prons, and cons, also, suggestions. How to use supplements, cream, gel, lotion, even what kind of clothes to wear. I was surprised, people who have bursitis can’t eat spicy food or vegetables, like tomatoes, eggplants and etc

    Thanks for the helpfull post.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Yes, it is a complex issue. It does sound like you may have arthritis and your mom bursitis. 

      I am glad you found this useful. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your story. 

      Jessica

      Reply
  28. Christine

    I have never heard of bursitis … This was a very informative post. Chronis bursitis sounds like a painful thing to live with, and although there seems to be treatment, it doesn’t really get cured, does it …? It is sad that it is not greatly understood by the medical community when they are the ones who are supposed to help … I can imagine how frustrating that can be …

    At least you can get some relief with ice packs, adjusting your seating, and wearing proper clothing (not wearing tight pants is kind of a no-brainer, right?) Arnica gel is indeed very effective, for many things, so I am glad that it helps provide relief for bursitis. 

    I think it’s wonderful that you have written such an extensive and informative article about hip bursitis, which is much needed since doctors do not seem to be that informed about chronic bursitis, as I understand. This should be shared on social media, to reach other people who suffer from this condition. 

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Christine,

      Thank you for your thoughts here. I don’t know if it can be “cured”. It seems that over time you can eventually get better if the conditions in your body and externally (not putting pressure on the affected area, avoiding heat etc) are improved. I do not know of any medical “cure” except possibly removing the bursa surgically. That is not always a “cure” overall however because another incidence of bursitis may just pop up in a different part of the body. That is why I am not a fan of the modern medical approach to treating bursitis! Why cut something out if it won’t solve the problem?

      Thank you for your support.

      Jessica

      Reply
  29. Happier At Home

    I never knew that bursitis is so closely related to arthritis.  Either way, they both sound painful.  There are is an incredible amount of different kinds of bursitis as well (all new to me)!  I can appreciate your stance on cortisone shots; I, too, would try other natural ways first before exploring other options. I am sorry that you suffer from this, but on the flip side of the coin, you have experienced it and can offer sound advice.  I like all of your suggestions, and something I’m walking away with is that even though I’m not affected by bursitis, I should try to sleep more on my back, for preventative measures.  Thank you for putting this informative article together!  I learned a lot!

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thank you. Yes, I have this myself and have for many years but it is much better now due to all of these methods I have employed. I am very pleased with the progress I have made and really want to share this with others. 

      Thanks!

      Jessica

      Reply
  30. Christopher Harvey

    Thanks for the article.  I usually find myself searching for a random article online, but this one helped to realize I do not have Hip Bursitis.  I thought It may be because my hip from my back to my knees is always hurting.  I think it’s more of a nerve issue.  It’s good to read your article though because of the more information the better.  You have clearly done a lot of research on the topic.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Christopher,

      Yes, more information is always better. I am glad you gained something useful from this and hope your nerve issues improve!

      Thanks for stopping by,

      Jessica

      Reply
  31. Robin Rasmussen

    Hi Jessica, upon reading your article I wonder if my chronic pain in my hip area as well as shoulders and spreading down into my arms and legs could be caused by Bursitis. I was beginning to believe it was sciatica or some form of arthritis. The pain can be unbearable at times then I’ll have a day or 2 with almost no pain. Thanks for the very insightful information on Bursitis. I will have to keep this in mind. 

    Reply
    1. admin

      Hello Robin,

      If the pain is going down your arms it is likely tendonitis but in the hip area it could be sciatica. It is hard to say without seeing you in person. The arnica gel is useful for bursitis, tendinitis and sciatica. The supplements should help all of those as well since those are all inflammatory conditions. 

      Good luck,

      Jessica

      Reply

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