What Is Bursitis?

Symptoms:  Symptoms of bursitis include pain, soreness, swelling, loss of range of motion, achy or stiff sensations, and pain with direct pressure.  The pain is usually localized near a joint (where any 2 bones meet together), most commonly at the shoulders, elbows, knees and hips, which are joints that perform frequent, repetitive motions.

Causes:  Any task that requires frequent, repetitive motions can lead to bursitis.  Throwing baseballs, hitting tennis balls and repeated overhead lifting motions (i.e. painting) are all examples of activities that can cause bursitis.  If muscular imbalance is present around your hips, the abnormal pulling can lead to bursitis from excess friction.  Spending extended periods of time in one position can also cause bursitis.  Examples of this include prolonged kneeling (i.e. laying carpet, scrubbing floors) and prolonged sitting, especially when seated on hard surfaces.  Sleeping on the same side, night after night, can compress the bursae of the shoulder or hip enough to cause bursitis in either of these areas.

Background:  Bursae are small, fluid-filled sacs that provide cushioning and friction reduction between muscles and tendons, and bones in and around highly-moveable joints.  Bursitis (inflamed bursae) occurs when the bursae is taxed too heavily with friction and inflames.  Bursitis most commonly develops over the course of several weeks or months as a result of a chronic, repetitive motion, but can also be caused by a traumatic event.  In rare cases, an infection in the body can lead to the inflammation of bursae causing bursitis.

Aligned Medical Approach:  We like to treat bursitis directly so you can experience fast relief.  This is best accomplished with injections, however for patients preferring more conservative treatment, we perform cold laser treatments, massage in the nearby area of bursitis, stretching and muscle stimulation.  Taking a quality EPA fish oil, such as Nordic Naturals, helps reduce inflammation and pain quickly.  As relief occurs, we treat the area to correct any joint restrictions or muscular imbalances.  Our goal is to get you relief and correct the cause so you do not have to come back again and again with the same problem.  Strengthening the affected area is imperative to properly address the cause of bursitis, along with lifestyle modification.

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