Bursitis: Symptoms, Causes, And Treatment
As the name suggests, bursitis is a condition involving the inflammation
of the bursa, which is a fluid-filled sac present between hard connective
tissues, responsible for decreasing friction during movement. While there
are 160 “bursae” in the body, the most commonly affected ones
are those in the large joints like the hip, shoulders, knees, and elbows.
- The most common cause of bursitis is repetitive motion of a particular
joint. This is common in sportspersons, and is referred to as chronic
bursitis. For instance, repetitively throwing a baseball could cause bursitis
of the elbow, while prolonged kneeling could result in bursitis in the knee.
- Acute bursitis is caused by major trauma, such as a direct blow on a particular
joint, which is usually accompanied with swelling and bleeding.
- Septic bursitis is caused by bacterial infection in the bursae close to
the skin. Alcoholism, diabetes, cortisone medications, obesity, and certain
kidney disorders are risk factors for this form of bursitis.
- Crystal formation in the bursae could be caused by diseases like gout and
rheumatoid arthritis, leading to bursitis.
- Age is also a causative factor of bursitis, since the tendons become less
elastic and more prone to stress with age.
- Pain- Could either develop gradually, or suddenly (in case of calcium deposits)
- Immobility- Referred to as frozen shoulder, this is commonly seen in shoulder bursitis.
- Difficulty to support body pressure- This is usually experienced in hip
bursitis, making it difficult to lay on the affected side.
- Swelling accompanied with redness and warmth.
- Fever could be a sign of septic bursitis and requires immediate medical
- Pain is often worse at night, and worsens with activity.
- RICE- Rest, Ice, Compression, & Elevation, is recommended as the first
line of self treatment for bursitis.
- OTC anti-inflammatory medications can help to provide some relief.
- You might need to see a Orthopedic if the condition does not subside within
a week. The Orthopedic doctors at OrthoTexas shall evaluate your condition
and suggest the appropriate line of treatment for you.
- Corticosteroid injections can be used in case of severe pain and inflammation.
- The orthopedic treatment at OrthoTexas includes range of motion exercises
as a part of the physical therapy for bursitis.
- Prolonged cases of bursitis that are non-responsive to the above-mentioned
treatments might need surgery as a last resort.