As warm weather arrives and the great outdoors beckons, more and more men and women will be taking to the trails, the beaches, or their yards and gardens, embarking on physical activities that may result in sore, aching, swollen joints. While it may be tempting to ignore these aches and pains or treat them with a little over-the-counter liniment, a wiser choice is to visit a physician who can determine if the symptoms are due to bursitis, inflammation of the fluid-filled bursae, or sacs, that surround and cushion the joints.
Bursitis occurs when the bursae become irritated or infected, often causing pain on movement. When infection is involved, medical intervention is necessary to fight the underlying infection and prevent it from spreading; when infection is not involved, prompt medical attention can prevent the condition from becoming worse over time.
Four of the most common types of bursitis, affecting the hips (trochanteric bursitis), knees (prepatellar bursitis), elbows (olecranon bursitis) and heels (retrocalcaneal bursitis), are examined in a new review article published in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (JAAOS).
"Bursitis is a common cause of musculoskeletal pain and often prompts orthopaedic consultation," said study author Daniel Aaron, MD, a clinical instructor in the department of orthopaedics at Brown University in Providence, R.I. "One of the challenges facing clinicians is to differentiate bursitis from conditions with similar symptoms, including arthritis, tendinitis, fracture, tendon or ligament injury and tumor. Additionally, bursitis arises from infectious and noninfectious causes, and distinguishing between the two can be challenging.
"A thorough history and physical examination is required for accurate diagnosis, and in some cases, medical tests also may be used to help the clinician identify bursitis and determine whether or not infection is involved," he added.
Trauma or infection is usually the root cause of all four types of bursitis, Dr. Aaron said.
"Hip and heel bursitis usually result from 'overuse' syndromes involving underlying structures related to the tendons," he noted. "Elbow and knee bursitis can be traumatic, due to either chronic low-level trauma or acute trauma, or infectious. Other inflammatory conditions can lead to bursitis as well."
Typical symptoms of bursitis include:pain with or without joint movement;
Hip bursitis may involve pain on the side of the hip, often radiating to the thigh. The hip area may be painful to the touch. Although range of motion of the hip may appear normal during the physical exam, the symptoms of trochanteric bursitis may be exacerbated by lying on your side, walking (especially uphill), climbing stairs and standing up from a seated position.
Knee bursitis may be due to specific predisposing factors, including a history of trauma to the area, such as repetitive or prolonged kneeling, immune system disorders, alcoholism, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), kidney failure, prior use of local corticosteroid medication and previous inflammation of the bursa. Pain with movement is uncommon, except when the joint is significantly flexed.
Elbow bursitis typically involves a history of minor or repetitive local trauma. Although swelling is often involved in patients with olecranon bursitis, usually this swollen area is only tender when infection is involved.
Heel bursitis often involves pain surrounding the Achilles tendon and heel areas, which are often tender when squeezed. This type of bursitis is typically associated with overuse and is especially common in runners, especially those who regularly train on inclines.
All types of bursitis often can be successfully managed non-surgically, and possible treatments include:use of ice packs or compressive dressings;
Dr. Aaron said in most cases, the best way to prevent bursitis is to vary physical activity, avoiding repetitive activities that may increase stress and trauma on the joints. Padding surrounding the knee or elbow joints may help prevent repetitive trauma which could lead to bursitis in those areas. Finally, losing extra weight which may be causing stress on joints, particularly of the hips and knees, is also recommended.
"By recognizing the presence of bursitis and determining whether or not infection is involved, clinicians can identify the best mode of treatment which will resolve symptoms and help the patient regain mobility," Dr. Aaron said.
About JAAOS (www.jaaos.org)www.facebook.com/AAOS1
Lauren Pearson | EurekAlert!
Study tracks inner workings of the brain with new biosensor
16.08.2018 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Foods of the future
15.08.2018 | Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
There are currently great hopes for solid-state batteries. They contain no liquid parts that could leak or catch fire. For this reason, they do not require cooling and are considered to be much safer, more reliable, and longer lasting than traditional lithium-ion batteries. Jülich scientists have now introduced a new concept that allows currents up to ten times greater during charging and discharging than previously described in the literature. The improvement was achieved by a “clever” choice of materials with a focus on consistently good compatibility. All components were made from phosphate compounds, which are well matched both chemically and mechanically.
The low current is considered one of the biggest hurdles in the development of solid-state batteries. It is the reason why the batteries take a relatively long...
New design tool automatically creates nanostructure 3D-print templates for user-given colors
Scientists present work at prestigious SIGGRAPH conference
Most of the objects we see are colored by pigments, but using pigments has disadvantages: such colors can fade, industrial pigments are often toxic, and...
Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...
Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.
When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...
Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.
Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....
17.08.2018 | Event News
08.08.2018 | Event News
27.07.2018 | Event News
20.08.2018 | Life Sciences
20.08.2018 | Information Technology
20.08.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering