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Management of Bursitis

What Is Bursitis?

Bursitis is the inflammation or irritation of the bursa. The bursa is a sac filled with lubricating fluid, located between tissues such as bone, muscle, tendons, and skin, that decreases rubbing, friction, and irritation.

What Causes Bursitis?

Bursitis is most often caused by repetitive, minor impact on the area, or from a sudden, more serious injury. Age also plays a role. As tendons age they are able to tolerate stress less, are less elastic, and are easier to tear.

Overuse or injury to the joint at work or play can also increase a person’s risk of bursitis. Examples of high-risk activities include gardening, raking, carpentry, shoveling, painting, scrubbing, tennis, golf, skiing, throwing, and pitching. Incorrect posture at work or home and poor stretching or conditioning before exercise can also lead to bursitis.

An abnormal or poorly placed bone or joint (such as length differences in your legs or arthritis in a joint) can put added stress on a bursa sac, causing bursitis. Stress or inflammation from other conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout, psoriatic arthritis, thyroid disorders, or unusual medication reactions may also increase a person’s risk. In addition, an infection can occasionally lead to inflammation of a bursa.

Who Usually Gets Bursitis?

Bursitis is more common in adults, especially in those over 40 years of age.

 

What Parts of the Body Does Bursitis Affect?

  • Elbow
  • Shoulder
  • Hip
  • Knee
  • Achilles tendon

What Are the Symptoms of Bursitis?

The most common symptom of bursitis is pain. The pain may build up gradually or be sudden and severe, especially if calcium deposits are present. Severe loss of motion in the shoulder — called “adhesive capsulitis” or frozen shoulder — can also result from the immobility and pain associated with shoulder bursitis.

How Can I Prevent Bursitis?

If you are planning to start exercising, you will be less likely to get bursitis if you gradually build up  force and  repetitions. Stop what you are doing if unusual pain occurs.

How Is Bursitis Treated?

Bursitis can be treated in a number of ways, including:

  • Avoiding activities that aggravate the problem
  • Resting the injured area
  • Icing the area the day of the injury
  • Taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medicines

If the condition does not improve in a week, see your doctor.

Your doctor can also prescribe drugs to reduce the inflammation. Corticosteroids are often used because they work quickly to decrease the inflammation and pain. Steroids  can be injected directly at the site of injury.  Injections are often, but not always, effective and can be repeated . However, multiple injections in a several month period are usually avoided due to potential side effects from the injections and the possibility of masking problems that need to be treated differently.

Physical therapy is another treatment option that is often used. This includes range-of-motion exercises and splinting (thumb, forearm, or bands).

Surgery, although rarely needed, may be an option when bursitis does not respond to the other treatment options.

Warning

Consult your doctor if you have:

  • Fever (over 102 Fahrenheit) — infection is a possibility
  • Swelling, redness, and warmth
  • General illness or multiple sites of pain
  • Inability to move the affected area

These could be signs of another problem that needs more immediate attention.

Cure your Elbow Bursitis today! Call us at +65 64712744 or Email to: info@boneclinic.com.sg for Appointment

What cause elbow pain?

Your elbow is a hinge joint consisting of three bones. The upper portion of the hinge is at the end of the upper arm bone (humerus), and the lower portion is the top of the two forearm bones (radius and ulna) which are side by side. All three of these bones are in contact with each other. The joint is surrounded and lined by cartilage, muscles, and tendons that provide support and stability, and make it easy for you to move.

It’s your elbow joint that lets you bend, extend, and rotate your arm. Your range of motion is dependent upon the proper articulation of this joint.

In a healthy elbow joint, the surfaces of these bones are very smooth and covered with a tough protective tissue called cartilage. Arthritis causes damage to the bone surfaces and cartilage where the three bones rub together. These damaged surfaces eventually become painful. Ligaments (another type of soft tissue) lie along the sides and back of the elbow, holding the bones of the elbow joint in place. These ligaments work with the muscles that control the bones and the tendons that connect the muscles to the bones so you can bend and straighten your elbow. Fluid-filled sacs (bursae) cushion the area where skin or tendons glide across bone. The elbow also has a lining (synovium) that secretes a clear liquid called synovial fluid. This fluid lubricates the joint, further reducing friction and making movement easier. 

As you might expect, there are many different reasons why you could be feeling elbow pain, including injury, infection, and arthritis.

Post-traumatic arthritis

Periodically, traumatic events to the elbow region result in bone fractures and severe dislocation of the joint structures. This typically can result in surgery that attempts to heal bone fragments in their proper orientation. Periodically, this attempt is not completely successful in either addressing damage to the cartilage from the injury or in precisely rebuilding your elbow as it was prior to the injury. As a result, the cartilage in your elbow may see forces differently than before the injury occurred. This can result in premature wear of the cartilage in the area of the injury and is called post-traumatic arthritis.

Rheumatoid arthritis

In rheumatoid arthritis, the synovium (lining of the joint) becomes inflamed. The inflammation causes chemicals to be released that thicken the synovium and damage the cartilage and bone of the affected joint. This inflammation of the synovium causes pain and swelling.

The good news about arthritis in the elbow is that it can be treated. Arthritis is a disease that typically worsens over the years, so it is common for treatment to involve more than one approach and to change over time. For some people, nonsurgical treatments such as lifestyle changes, medications, and physical therapy help alleviate the pain. For others, elbow replacement surgery may be a long-term solution. Together, you and your doctor can determine the best treatment options for you.

Stop the pain and Get your Elbow checked today! Call +65 6471 2744 (24 Hours) or Email: info@boneclinic.com.sg

Patient education about elbow pain

Your elbow is a hinge joint consisting of three bones. The upper portion of the hinge is at the end of the upper arm bone (humerus), and the lower portion is the top of the two forearm bones (radius and ulna) which are side by side. All three of these bones are in contact with each other. The joint is surrounded and lined by cartilage, muscles, and tendons that provide support and stability, and make it easy for you to move.

It’s your elbow joint that lets you bend, extend, and rotate your arm. Your range of motion is dependent upon the proper articulation of this joint.

In a healthy elbow joint, the surfaces of these bones are very smooth and covered with a tough protective tissue called cartilage. Arthritis causes damage to the bone surfaces and cartilage where the three bones rub together. These damaged surfaces eventually become painful. Ligaments (another type of soft tissue) lie along the sides and back of the elbow, holding the bones of the elbow joint in place. These ligaments work with the muscles that control the bones and the tendons that connect the muscles to the bones so you can bend and straighten your elbow. Fluid-filled sacs (bursae) cushion the area where skin or tendons glide across bone. The elbow also has a lining (synovium) that secretes a clear liquid called synovial fluid. This fluid lubricates the joint, further reducing friction and making movement easier. 

As you might expect, there are many different reasons why you could be feeling elbow pain, including injury, infection, and arthritis.

Post-traumatic arthritis

Periodically, traumatic events to the elbow region result in bone fractures and severe dislocation of the joint structures. This typically can result in surgery that attempts to heal bone fragments in their proper orientation. Periodically, this attempt is not completely successful in either addressing damage to the cartilage from the injury or in precisely rebuilding your elbow as it was prior to the injury. As a result, the cartilage in your elbow may see forces differently than before the injury occurred. This can result in premature wear of the cartilage in the area of the injury and is called post-traumatic arthritis.

Rheumatoid arthritis

In rheumatoid arthritis, the synovium (lining of the joint) becomes inflamed. The inflammation causes chemicals to be released that thicken the synovium and damage the cartilage and bone of the affected joint. This inflammation of the synovium causes pain and swelling.

The good news about arthritis in the elbow is that it can be treated. Arthritis is a disease that typically worsens over the years, so it is common for treatment to involve more than one approach and to change over time. For some people, nonsurgical treatments such as lifestyle changes, medications, and physical therapy help alleviate the pain. For others, elbow replacement surgery may be a long-term solution. Together, you and your doctor can determine the best treatment options for you.

Cure your elbow pain today and get it check, call us at +65 6471 2744 (24 Hours) / Email: info@boneclinic.com.sg