Gluteus medius tendinopathy (GMT), also known as dead butt syndrome (DBS), is a painful health issue caused by the inflammation of the tendons in the gluteus medius muscle. The gluteus medius (GM) is one of the smallest, less-known muscles of the buttocks which ultimately functions by providing stability and support to the structures of the hip and pelvis, especially throughout weight-bearing physical activities. Although GMT most commonly affects athletes, it can also affect people starting a new exercise program, during an intense workout routine or due to an underlying health issue.
Healthcare professionals have reported an increased number of GMT cases over the past several years. While many doctors and functional medicine practitioners believe that this may perhaps be due to how many people participate and engage in exercise or physical activities after sitting down for extended periods of time, many GMT cases may actually be due to a well-known health issue called fibromyalgia. In the following article, we will discuss gluteus medius tendinopathy (GMT), or dead butt syndrome (DBS), fibromyalgia and how these two conditions can also be associated with sciatica symptoms.
The common symptoms associated with gluteus medius tendinopathy, or GMT, include pain and discomfort, stiffness, and weakness in the hip or buttocks region. The painful symptoms can generally worsen throughout weight-bearing exercises, such as walking, running, and/or climbing. For many people, the pain and discomfort associated with dead butt syndrome, or DBS, can radiate down the hips, buttocks, and legs or thighs, similar to sciatica and hamstring tendinopathy. Sciatica is a collection of symptoms characterized by pain and discomfort, tingling sensations, and numbness along the sciatic nerve.
Many patients diagnosed with GMT also report experiencing painful symptoms when lying in bed on the affected hip or buttocks region as well as pain, discomfort, stiffness, and weakness throughout the night and upon rising in the morning. Moreover, if DBS progresses past the initial stage, the hip bursa may become inflamed, another health issue known as trochanteric bursitis, which may also cause swelling, tenderness, redness or warmth in the hip. In people with fibromyalgia, the widespread pain and discomfort caused by the inflammation of the condition may also ultimately cause GMT symptoms.
The role of the gluteus medius muscle is to contract the weight-bearing hip throughout walking and running. When this small, lesser-known muscle triggers, the hip flexors release and vice versa. However, when the tendon becomes inflamed due to an injury or an aggravated underlying condition, such as fibromyalgia, the gluteus medius can fail to trigger appropriately, hence why the “dead butt” term is utilized as an alternate name for this health issue. People sitting down for extended periods of time may cause their hip flexors to become tight and failure to stretch before physical activities can cause DBS.
Furthermore, poor gluteal or buttocks and hip muscle control cause excess stress on the gluteal medius tendon and/or muscle. Several athletes, especially runners, generally avoid utilizing cross-training and weight-lifting in order to help strengthen the larger muscles which support the pelvis when running, however, the hip’s and buttock’s smaller tendons and muscles may take on the excess pressure. If left untreated, gluteus medius tendinopathy (GMT), or dead butt syndrome (DBS) may lead to complications, including trochanteric bursitis, IT band syndrome, and plantar fasciitis, among other health issues.
Fibromyalgia is widespread pain and discomfort throughout the human body. People with this painful condition can experience a variety of symptoms, including sciatica or sciatic nerve pain. Doctors and functional medicine practitioners believe that fibromyalgia can aggravate how the human body feels painful sensations by affecting how the human brain processes pain signals. Fibromyalgia and sciatica are two well-known conditions which can commonly coexist together. However, many fibromyalgia sufferers have also reported experiencing gluteal medius tendinopathy (GMT), or dead butt syndrome (DBS), a painful health issue caused by the inflammation of the tendons in the gluteus medius muscle. Because fibromyalgia is often associated with increased inflammation and painful symptoms, GMT or DBS and sciatica can commonly develop together. – Dr. Alex Jimenez D.C., C.C.S.T. Insight
People with fibromyalgia experience widespread pain and discomfort as a result of their medical condition, however, healthcare professionals have demonstrated that fibromyalgia may also cause other symptoms and health issues to manifest, such as sciatica, or sciatic nerve pain, and gluteal tendinopathy. The purpose of the article above was to demonstrate and compare fibromyalgia, sciatica and gluteal tendinopathy symptoms. The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal and nervous health issues as well as functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. To further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900 .
Curated by Dr. Alex Jimenez
Back pain is one of the most prevalent causes of disability and missed days at work worldwide. Back pain attributes to the second most common reason for doctor office visits, outnumbered only by upper-respiratory infections. Approximately 80 percent of the population will experience back pain at least once throughout their life. Your spine is a complex structure made up of bones, joints, ligaments, and muscles, among other soft tissues. Injuries and/or aggravated conditions, such as herniated discs, can eventually lead to symptoms of sciatica, or sciatic nerve pain. Sports injuries or automobile accident injuries are often the most frequent cause of painful symptoms, however, sometimes the simplest of movements can have these results. Fortunately, alternative treatment options, such as chiropractic care, can help ease sciatic nerve pain, or sciatica, through the utilization of spinal adjustments and manual manipulations, ultimately improving pain relief.
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