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Iliotibial band syndrome is pain and swelling of the iliotibial band (also called the IT band). This is a band of tissue that runs down the outside of your thigh. It connects the side of your hip to the side of your knee. It helps keep your knee and hip stable and in their normal position.
When you have IT band syndrome, you may feel pain on the outside of your hip. It happens as your IT band snaps back and forth over the bony point of your hip. Sometimes you may only feel pain on the outside of your knee.
You can get this syndrome if the IT band is too tight or if you do certain activities over and over that put pressure on your hip or knee. This is a common problem in runners, cyclists, and people who do other aerobic activities.
IT band syndrome is treated with rest and medicines. These relieve swelling and pain. Physiotherapy is also used. It may include stretching or doing certain exercises that can help strengthen your IT band and hip muscles. Sometimes a steroid shot is given to help relieve pain at the spot that is most sore.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse advice line if:
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Current as of: March 9, 2022
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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