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Definition of Bursitis disease
Bursitis is inflammation of the fluid-filled sac, called a bursa, that serves as a cushion between bones and tendons, muscle, or skin. The condition most typically occurs in the shoulders, elbows, hips, or knees and is more common in women. Bursitis can occur at any age but it is more likely to develop with aging.
Repetitive motion can increase the chances of developing bursitis; accordingly, athletes, musicians, and manual laborers are all at increased risk. Rheumatoid arthritis and gout increase the chances of developing bursitis, as does injury to the joint or any kind of infection.
Symptoms of Bursitis
The most common symptoms of bursitis are pain and swelling at the joint. Patients may also experience stiffness. Some patients experience redness as well as tenderness of the affected joint.
Pain may radiate outwards and may be worse at night or during any prolonged period of activity. Symptoms of bursitis are typically relieved through treatment, but future flare-ups are possible. Physicians may use x-rays, bone scans and MRIs to diagnose bursitis.
Bursitis may go away after time. The most common recommendation is “RICE” – rest, ice, compression, elevation. The use of sprints or braces may be recommended. Analgesics such as acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen are also commonly used to treat bursitis. Steroid injections may be used in more serious cases as the injections provide more immediate (if temporary) relief.
Prevention of bursitis involves awareness of repetitive motions at work, or in sport, and a conscious effort to reduce force. Paying attention to posture, form, and technique may help reduce the risk of developing bursitis. Taking breaks and stretching can also help, as can maintaining a warm work environment. Maintaining a healthy weight through diet, exercise, and rest is also important.