A bursa is a small sac filled with fluid. You have many bursae (the plural of bursa). Bursae cushion your muscles, tendons, and ligaments around joints and keep them from rubbing against each other.
Bursitis is inflammation of a bursa.
The bursa swells up with fluid
Sometimes the swelling is red and tender to touch
Bursitis may not hurt, it may hurt only when you move the joint, or it may hurt all the time
Bursitis happens most often in the shoulder, elbow, and hip but can also affect your knee, toe, or heel
Doctors treat bursitis with rest, splints, pain medicine, and corticosteroids
The most common causes of bursitis are:
Other causes of bursitis include:
Symptoms of bursitis can come on suddenly or build up over time. They may come and go. They can include:
Doctors can often tell you have bursitis based on your symptoms and examination. They may:
Most of the time you don't need any other tests, but sometimes doctors will:
Do x-rays Plain X-Rays A plain x-ray is an imaging test that takes a picture of the inside of your body. It uses a low dose of x-ray radiation. X-rays show body parts according to how dense (solid) they are. Doctors... read more , MRI Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) MRI is a test that uses a machine with a powerful magnet to make pictures of the inside of your body. A computer records changes in the magnetic field around your body. The computer then uses... read more , or ultrasound Ultrasonography Ultrasonography is a safe imaging test that uses sound waves to create a moving picture of the insides of your body. Ultrasonography doesn't use radiation (x-rays). Ultrasonography is also called... read more
Do blood tests to check for other diseases
If your bursitis isn't caused by an infection, doctors will have you:
Sometimes doctors will drain the fluid in the bursa with a needle. They may inject the bursa with medicines such as corticosteroids to lessen the inflammation. If the bursitis doesn't go away or keeps coming back and is still causing problems, doctors may suggest surgery to remove the bursa.
If a bursa is infected, doctors will:
Doctors will treat the cause of your bursitis. It's important to do this so your bursitis doesn't come back.