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Bursitis is a painful and debilitating problem which involves tiny fluid-filled pads named bursae or bursa, hence the term, bursitis.
These tiny bursae cushion the bones, muscles and tendons near joints. Bursitis is a condition which occurs when bursae get irritated and inflamed.
Bursitis typically occurs in the elbows, shoulders or hips. However, bursitis in the heel, knee and big toe are also highly possible. Bursitis is common in regions which frequently undergo repetitive motion.
The signs and symptoms of bursitis include:
Bursitis is commonly causes by repetitive movement of a joint or taking up positions which irritate the bursae at a particular joint.
Some examples of movements that irritate bursae include:
There are certain bursae that lie right underneath the skin, such as in the case of your knee or elbow. These regions are most susceptible to puncture wounds which can result in infections of the bursae – a condition called septic bursitis.
Shoulder Joint With Normal Size Bursa
Shoulder Joint With Swollen Bursa
Make sure you see a healthcare provider as soon as possible if you experience any of the following:
Treatment for bursitis typically involves conservative approaches:
In case an infection inflames a bursa, see your doctor to be prescribed with antibiotics.
Your doctor may inject corticosteroid drugs to the affected bursa to reduce inflammation and relieve pain
Physical therapy and exercises may be recommended to strengthen muscles and restore range of motion of your joints in order to prevent the condition from recurring and to ease pain
Surgery is often a last resort in most cases but if the above-mentioned treatments won’t work, it would be the only option left. The surgeon will surgically drain the inflamed bursa or in rare occasions, surgically remove it.
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