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Gluteal Strain Symptoms & Diagnosis


Symptoms include:

  • Pain and tenderness in the buttocks
  • Stiffness in the gluteal muscles
  • Weakness of the gluteal muscles
  • Bruising on the buttocks (if blood vessels are broken)


The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history, your recent physical activity, and how the injury occurred. The doctor will also examine your buttocks for:

  • Tenderness and bruising
  • Pain when contracting the gluteal muscles, particularly against resistance

Muscle strains are graded according to their severity:

Grade 1

  • Stretching with some microtearing of muscle fibers
  • Recovery—2 weeks

Grade 2

  • Partial tearing of muscle fibers
  • Recovery—1-2 months

Grade 3

  • Complete tearing (rupture) of muscle fibers (This is rare with the gluteal muscles.)
  • Recovery—more than three months

For a severe gluteal strain, you may have an MRI scan . Professional and collegiate athletes sometimes have MRI scans to predict the length of recovery.

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