Ischiogluteal bursitis



What is ischiogluteal bursitis?

Ischiogluteal bursitis, also known as ischial bursitis, is a condition that causes pain in the buttock and is characterized by tissue damage and inflammation to the ischiogluteal bursa. A bursa is a small sac filled with lubricating fluid and is designed to reduce friction between adjacent soft tissue layers. The ischiogluteal bursa is located at the base of the pelvis, at the level of the bony prominence known as the ischial tuberosity.

The hamstring muscles originate from the pelvis (ischial tuberosity) and insert into the top of the lower leg bones. The hamstring muscles attach to the pelvis via the hamstring tendon. The ischiogluteal bursa lies between the hamstring tendon and the pelvic bone (ischial tuberosity).

The hamstring muscles are responsible for bending the knee and straightening the hip during activity and are particularly active during running, jumping and kicking. During contraction of the hamstrings, tension is placed through the hamstring tendon which in turn places friction on the ischiogluteal bursa. Pressure may also be placed on the ischiogluteal bursa during sitting. When these forces are excessive due to too much repetition or high force, irritation and inflammation of the ischiogluteal bursa may occur. This condition is known as an ischiogluteal bursitis.

How common is ischiogluteal bursitis?

Please discuss with your doctor for further information.


What are the symptoms of ischiogluteal bursitis?

The symptoms of ischiogluteal bursitis are identical to hamstring tendon inflammation and include pain and tenderness at the ischial tuberosity, pain when stretching the hamstring muscles. Pain may gradually come on following a sprinting training session and is aggravated by sitting.

There may be some symptoms not listed above. If you have any concerns about a symptom, please consult your doctor.

When should I see my doctor?

If you have any signs or symptoms listed above or have any questions, please consult with your doctor. Everyone’s body acts differently. It is always best to discuss with your doctor what is best for your situation.


What causes ischiogluteal bursitis?

Ischiogluteal bursitis is caused by performing prolonged and repetitive activities that place stress on the ischiogluteal bursa. Ischiogluteal bursitis is frequently caused due to prolonged sitting, specifically on hard surfaces and by performing sports that involve repetitive jumping, kicking and running in which stress is placed on the ischiogluteal bursa through the hamstring tendon. In some cases, individuals may also develop ischiogluteal bursitis suddenly followed by a direct blow to the ischiogluteal bursa such as falling down onto a hard surface.

Other causes may include:

  • Inappropriate and excessive training.
  • Poor core stability.
  • Joint stiffness, specifically of the hip.
  • Muscle weakness particularly the gluteals and hamstrings.
  • Chronic gout and ischial pain (Also Read: Disability Benefits for Gout)
  • Neural tightness.
  • Poor biomechanics such as excessive stride length.
  • Muscle tightness specifically the gluteals and hamstrings.
  • Inadequate rehabilitation followed by a previous buttock injury.
  • Leg length discrepancy.
  • Inadequate warm up.

Risk factors

What increases my risk for ischiogluteal bursitis?

Please consult your doctor for further information.

Diagnosis & treatment

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. ALWAYS consult with your doctor for more information.

How is ischiogluteal bursitis diagnosed?

A thorough subjective and objective examination from a physiotherapist may be sufficient to diagnose ischiogluteal bursitis. Further investigations such as an Ultrasound, X-ray, CT or MRI scan are often required to assist with diagnosis and assess the severity of the condition.

How is ischiogluteal bursitis treated?

Based on your condition, your doctor may suggest the suitable treatment, including:

  • Rest
  • Cold therapy helps in reducing inflammation and pain.
  • Avoiding activities that aggravate the symptoms.
  • Avoid massage.
  • Corticosteroid injections, where the medication is injected into the bursa, not only helps in reducing the inflammation but also alleviates the symptoms.

Physical therapy for ischiogluteal bursitis is important in speeding up the healing process. Physical therapy also decreases the likelihood of recurrences in the future. Physical therapy may include:

  • Application of heat and ice.
  • Electrotherapy like TENS and ultrasound.
  • Soft tissue massage.
  • Stretches
  • Dry needling.
  • Joint mobilization.
  • Using crutches.
  • Correction of abnormal biomechanics such as using orthotics.
  • Anti-inflammatory advice.
  • Exercises for improvement of the strength, flexibility and core stability.
  • Activity modification and training.
  • Appropriate plan for return to activity.

Lifestyle changes & home remedies

What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies that can help me manage ischiogluteal bursitis?

The following lifestyles and home remedies might help you cope with ischiogluteal bursitis:

  • Rest
  • Apply ice or cold therapy to reduce pain and inflammation.
  • See a doctor or physiotherapist if symptoms persist.
  • Carry out hamstring strengthening and rehabilitation as pain may have caused weakness through muscle inhibition.

If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.


Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Review Date: October 31, 2017 | Last Modified: October 31, 2017

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