Monday, 21 August 2017

Ultrasound Therapy for Hip Bursitis - My experience

(TW: Mention of weight and exercise)

A little while ago, I noticed I was getting a different kind of pain in my hips. The pain radiated over my hips and halfway down the sides of my thighs. It did feel different to my usual pains from the Hypermobility Syndrome and Fibromyalgia. I mentioned this at a medication review, and made an appointment with my GP. She examined my hips and asked me to do a couple of things to see if it affected my movement. Being hypermobile though, I still had a large range of movement. The GP said she suspected Hip Bursitis and referred me for physio.

Hip Bursitis ₁ is basically inflammation of the hip/s. There is a build-up of fluid and, with that and the inflammation, pain and tenderness occurs. It can be caused by a number of things; including injury or trauma. I don't remember knocking my hips on anything, so think mine was caused by the regular subluxations I have. My hips are very hypermobile, and apparently this is quite noticeable when I walk.

It was only a couple of weeks before my first physio appointment, thankfully, and I saw a lovely woman who knew about my conditions. She examined my hips and showed me an exercise I could do; in order to strengthen the muscles round them. She said it's quite rare to get bursitis in both hips (I guess I was just very unlucky!) but both my hips are equally hypermobile, so this is probably why.

She also booked me in for ultrasound ₂ sessions. I asked about this, because I'd never heard of it. I thought physiotherapy mainly involved exercise, but apparently there are other types of therapy that can be used. The physiotherapist told me that cold gel is put on my hip, then the ultrasound device is rubbed on both for 5 minutes each. It should help with reducing the inflammation. Some people only need one or two sessions to feel any sort of benefit, some need more.

I found the ultrasound very gentle, and relaxing to be honest. We started with me lying on my side, but this proved too painful, so I would have the sessions sitting down. The ultrasound device reminded me of the ones used for scans. Of course there's no screen, however. I found it a bit difficult to sit completely still; due to muscle twitches I experienced. I think this may be because of the Fibromyalgia. The physio understood though, and this didn't disrupt the sessions too much.

I had about 4 sessions, and although I still have a bit of the bursitis pain, it is a lot less painful than it was, when I started physio. I made sure I did the exercises too, which I think have also helped.

I've decided to see what kind of exercises I can tolerate, as well as the physio. I want to do this for general health, and to help me manage my weight. Since being on mood stabilisers, I've found my weight increasing and I want to try and lose that. Wish me luck!

Resources

1. https://www.arthritis-health.com/types/bursitis/hip-trochanteric-bursitis

2. http://www.mybursitis.com/bursitis-ultrasound.html

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