Bursitis refers to the inflammation or irritation of the bursa, small fluid-filled sacs that act as cushions between bones, tendons, joints, and muscles. These sacs reduce friction and prevent wear and tear in the joints. When inflamed, the bursa can cause pain and restrict movement in the affected area.
At Alliance Orthopedics, we understand the discomfort and limitations posed by bursitis. Our dedicated team is committed to providing comprehensive care to help patients manage their symptoms and regain full mobility.
Understanding the Bursae
The bursae play a crucial role in the smooth functioning of our joints. These tiny, fluid-filled sacs are strategically located throughout the body, primarily around the major joints, such as the shoulders, elbows, hips, and knees. They act as shock absorbers and lubricators, facilitating smooth movement between bones, tendons, and muscles. When functioning correctly, they allow for seamless, pain-free movement. However, when they become inflamed, the result is bursitis.
Causes of Bursitis
Bursitis can result from various factors, including:
- Repetitive motions: Regularly making the same movements can irritate the bursa, leading to inflammation.
- Prolonged pressure: Sitting or kneeling for extended periods can exert pressure on some bursa, causing irritation.
- Injury or trauma: A direct blow or injury to a joint can lead to bursitis.
- Other medical conditions: Infections, arthritis, or gout can also cause bursitis.
Types of Bursitis
Bursitis can affect various parts of the body, with the most common types being:
- Shoulder (Subacromial) Bursitis: Caused by inflammation of the bursa located between the shoulder blade and the top of the upper arm bone.
- Elbow (Olecranon) Bursitis: Affects the bursa located right over the pointed bone of the elbow.
- Hip (Trochanteric) Bursitis: Involves the bursa covering the bony point of the hip.
- Knee (Prepatellar) Bursitis: Affects the bursa in front of the kneecap.
- Heel (Retrocalcaneal) Bursitis: Involves the bursa located between the Achilles tendon and the heel bone.
Symptoms of Bursitis
Common symptoms of bursitis include:
- Pain or tenderness around the affected area
- Swelling and redness
- Stiffness or aching when moving the affected joint
- Increased pain with pressure or movement
At Alliance Orthopedics, our approach to diagnosing bursitis begins with a detailed discussion about the symptoms and a physical examination of the affected area. We may also recommend imaging tests such as X-rays, ultrasounds, or MRIs to get a detailed view of the bursa and surrounding structures.
The treatment for bursitis aims to reduce inflammation and pain:
- Rest and Immobilization: Avoiding activities that exacerbate the symptoms.
- Cold compress: Applying ice to the affected area can reduce swelling.
- Physical therapy: Targeted exercises can restore strength and flexibility to the affected joint.
- Corticosteroid injections: These can provide rapid relief from severe pain and inflammation.
At Alliance Orthopedics, our commitment is to provide world-class care for bursitis. We aim to guide patients through the recovery process, ensuring they regain comfort and full mobility in the affected joint.