Routine laboratory blood work is generally not helpful in the diagnosis of noninfectious bursitis but is appropriate when septic bursitis or underlying autoimmune disease is suspected. Aspiration and analysis of bursal fluid should be done to rule out infectious or rheumatic causes, and may also be therapeutic.
MRI is usually unnecessary but if needed is very sensitive for identification of bursitis, and can rule out suspected solid tumors and define pathology for possible surgical excision. Ultrasonography is useful for further imaging of the bursa when the diagnosis is uncertain and can guide diagnostic aspiration or therapeutic injections.Show Less
Carpet and floor layers, painters, tile setters, and gardeners/landscapers that require kneeling are at risk for bursitis to the knees. Working with the arms above shoulder level can give rise to shoulder bursitis.Show Less
The treatment of bursitis includes anti-inflammatory medication. It is also important to avoid or reduce any work activities suspected of causing bursitis. Most patients respond to treatment, and they usually go back to work without any restriction.Show Less
The main symptom of bursitis is pain and swelling in or around the joint. In some cases, especially for shoulder bursitis, people may experience some restriction of movement and stiffness.Show Less
While not all types of bursitis can be prevented, you can reduce the risk and the severity of flare-ups by changing the way you do certain tasks. Examples include:
- Using kneeling pads. Use some type of padding to reduce the pressure on your knees if your job or hobby requires a lot of kneeling.
- Lifting properly. Bend your knees when you lift. Failing to do so puts extra stress on the bursae in your hips.
- Wheeling heavy loads. Carrying heavy loads puts stress on the bursae in your shoulders. Use a dolly or a wheeled cart instead.
- Taking frequent breaks. Alternate repetitive tasks with rest or other activities.
- Maintaining a healthy weight. Being overweight places more stress on your joints.
- Exercising. Strengthening your muscles can help protect your affected joint.
- Warming up and stretching before strenuous activities to protect your joints from injury.
Anyone can develop bursitis, but certain factors can increase the risk:
- Age. Bursitis becomes more common with aging.
- Occupations or hobbies. If your work or hobby requires repetitive motion or pressure on particular bursae, the risk of developing bursitis increases. Examples include carpet laying, tile setting, gardening, painting and playing a musical instrument.
- Other medical conditions. Certain systemic diseases and conditions — such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout and diabetes — increase the risk of developing bursitis. Being overweight can increase the risk of developing hip and knee bursitis.
The prevention of bursitis should focus on the avoidance of kneeling that causes friction and mechanical trauma on the knees. If kneeling is necessary, knee pads and sitting/kneeling support should be used.
Working for prolonged periods with arms above shoulder level causes friction on the bursa of the shoulder. To avoid bursitis in the shoulder, it is necessary to raise the worker by using a platform or to lower the work object.
General prevention steps include:
- Strengthen muscles around the joint, but begin new exercises or activities carefully.
- Take breaks from repetitive tasks. Stop activities that cause pain.
- Use foam for kneeling or elbow pads.
- Increase the gripping surface of tools with gloves or padding. Apply grip tape or an oversized grip.
- Use two hands to hold heavy tools.
If you have a history of bursitis or tendinitis, ask your doctor or therapist before beginning new exercises and activities.Show Less
Conservative treatment to reduce inflammation is used for most patients with bursitis and includes the following:
- Cold and heat treatments;
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs);
- Bursal aspiration;
- Intrabursal steroid injections (with or without local anesthetic agents).
Patients with suspected septic bursitis should be treated with antibiotics while awaiting culture results. Surgical excision of bursae may be required as a last resort for chronic or frequently recurrent bursitis.Show Less
Most football players who dislocate their shoulder for the first time can usually return to play within six weeks after the injury once they reestablish full range of shoulder motion and strength. They must be able to perform all the actions necessitated by their position prior to returning to play. Those players who undergo surgery often require five to six months of rehabilitation before they are able to resume contact and collision sports.Show Less