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Evaluation of the Athlete With Buttock Pain

Vasudevan, John M. MD1,2; Smuck, Matthew MD2; Fredericson, Michael MD, FACSM1,2,3,4

doi: 10.1249/JSR.0b013e3182423d71
Spine Conditions

Buttock (gluteal) pain is commonly experienced by athletes of all ages and activity levels. Evaluation of buttock pain can be challenging because the differential diagnoses are extensive. Symptoms may originate from the pelvis or hip or be referred from the lumbosacral spine or neurovascular structures. Few articles in the literature are dedicated to the primary complaint of buttock pain. The purpose of this article is to provide a clinical algorithm to assist the sports clinician in reaching an accurate diagnosis and initiating the appropriate treatment.

1PM&R Sports Medicine Service, Stanford University, Redwood City, CA; 2Division of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Stanford University, Redwood City, CA; 3Stanford Athletics, Stanford University, Redwood City, CA; and 4School of Medicine, Stanford University, Redwood City, CA

Address for correspondence: Michael Fredericson, MD, FACSM, Stanford Medicine Outpatient Center, 450 Broadway Street, MC 6342, Redwood City, CA 94063-6342 (E-mail:

© 2012 American College of Sports Medicine