Witnesses have told officers that the woman, who is in her 60s, was getting onto the 203 bus outside the Piccadilly Tavern, when a man ran up to her and snatched her handbag.
The force the man used as he plucked the handbag from her grasp, threw the woman onto the floor, causing a shattered hip and broken shoulder, which she required surgery for.
He ran away from the scene empty handed.
Officers are working to identify the offender and are appealing for anyone who witnessed the incident to come forward.
Detective Sergeant Paddy Connell of GMP’s City of Manchester Team, said:
“This happened in a popular area on a busy Friday evening where something like this would have shocked a number of the people in the area and I’m sure some of them would have a good description of the offender, which would help us with our enquiries.
“Nobody should be put in fear for going about their daily lives, whether day or night and while we have CCTV to examine and get statements together, we need witnesses to get in touch with us.”
Anyone with information should contact police on 101 quoting reference number 2223 of 14/07/17 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.