Knee Bursitis - Health Center

Knee Bursitis

By Refadoc, Posted on : Tuesday, 15 September 2015 - 10:46 am IST

Knee Bursitis:

Knee Bursitis is a condition which causes inflammation of the bursa around the knee joint. A Bursa is a small fluid filled sac which helps to reduce the friction and helps to cushion the pressure exerted by the bones and the tendons near the joints.

Each knee contains around 11 bursae. Though any bursae can become inflamed, usually, the knee bursitis is caused when the kneecap or any other bursae on the inner side of the knee below the joint become inflamed.

Knee Bursitis can result in pain and can limit the mobility of the affected person. The treatment options for Knee Bursitis include self care practices and medications in order to decrease the pain and the inflammation.  

Causes of Knee Bursitis:

The following are the major causes of Knee Bursitis:

  •             A frequent and sustained pressure caused due to kneeling or any other repetitive activity.
  •             A direct blow or injury to the knee
  •             Bacterial infection of the bursa
  •             Additional complications arising due to osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis or gout of the knee. 

Signs and Symptoms of Knee Bursitis:

The signs and symptoms of the condition may vary from one person to the other depending on the bursa which has been affected. The affected portion of the knee often feels warm, tender and inflamed upon the application of pressure. Often, the patient also experiences pain during moving the affected region.

Knee Bursitis is caused due to the repetitive injuries as well as repeated kneeling. Therefore, the symptoms of the disease tend to worsen with the passage of time.

It is recommended to see a doctor if your bursa becomes severly infected. Also, if you experience pain and fever along with the swelling, it is recommended to visit a doctor and seek medical attention.

Diagnosis and Tests for Knee Bursitis:

The doctors can make a diagnosis of the condition with the help of a physical examination. The doctor often inspects the knee comparing the condition of both the knees. Often, gentle pressure is applied onto the different areas of the knee in order to look for signs of inflammation and swelling. The doctors move the legs onto different positions in order to determine the range of the knee motion.

Apart from physical examination, Imaging Tests can also be conducted in order to rule out the signs and symptoms of other conditions, similar to Bursitis.

X Rays and MRI Scans are done in order to produce detailed images of the knee structures. This technique is used in order to visualize the soft tissues such as the bursae.

In case the patient is suffering from an infection or gout around the Bursa, the doctor may draw a small sample of the fluid with the help of a needle and by draining some fluid.

Treatment and Drugs for Knee Bursitis:

Depending on the part of the knee that has been affected, the treatment options are as follows:

Medications: If an infection is the cause of Knee Bursitis, an antibiotic treatment is prescribed for the same.

Therapy: A physical therapist can help the patient to learn certain exercises in order to increase the flexibility and the strength of the muscles. The therapy helps to reduce the pain.

Corticosteroid Injection: These injections are prescribed to the patients who are not responding well to basic treatments. A corticosteroid injection is inserted right into the affected region to remove the inflammation.

Surgery: If the patient is suffering from chronic Bursitis and is not responding to other treatment options, then surgery may be recommended in order to remove the infected bursa. 

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