Bursitis is a condition that causes pain and swelling in the knee. It occurs when the bursa, a small sac of fluid that cushions the joint, becomes inflamed. Bursitis is usually caused by overuse or repetitive motion.
Symptoms of bursitis include pain, tenderness, stiffness, redness, or warmth around the joint. The symptoms are usually worse when pressure is applied to the area or when moving/bending the affected joint. Severe cases may cause fever.
If you think you may have bursitis, it is important to see a doctor, so they can rule out other possible causes of your symptoms, such as arthritis or infection.
If you do get diagnosed with knee bursitis, your doctor may recommend the 6 tips below to relieve it.
Tips for Knee Bursitis Relief
- Rest and avoid activities that aggravate your symptoms. Pain is a sign that you should stop what you are doing. This will help reduce inflammation and allow your body to heal.
- Apply ice to your knee for 20 minutes at a time several times a day to reduce swelling and pain. Do not apply ice directly to the skin. Wrap it in a towel first or use an ice pack, which you can place directly on the affected knee.
- Take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen or naproxen to reduce inflammation and pain. Be sure to only take them as directed. If you have any medical conditions, check with your doctor before taking these medications. People with heartburn, ulcers, GERD, kidney disease, heart disease, or high blood pressure should use these medications only under their doctor’s supervision. Long-term use of NSAIDs may lead to gastrointestinal bleeding, therefore it should only be used in the short term.
- Use compression bandages around your knee area during periods of activity to limit stress on the knee. Compression sleeves and bandages can reduce friction between surfaces and cushion the knee.
- Elevate your leg above heart level whenever possible. This helps gravity drain excess fluid from the joint and reduce blood flow towards it, which minimizes swelling.
- Perform gentle physical therapy exercises approved by a physical therapist that strengthen the knee and keep the muscles flexible.
If knee bursitis symptoms persist, consult an orthopedic surgeon, who can perform an aspiration to drain the fluid from the bursa or perform surgery to remove the inflamed and infected bursa.
Knee Bursitis Treatment in Bismarck, ND
Seeing an orthopedic surgeon takes the guesswork out of what’s best to do with your knee problem. At The Bone & Joint Center, our board-certified orthopedic surgeons are highly experienced in bursitis treatment and regularly see patients with this problem. Our team consists not only of doctors but also physician assistants and physical therapists, who may also be part of your healthcare team.
To schedule an appointment with one of our doctors, call our office today at (701) 946-7400 / (866) 900-8650, or use our convenient online request form. We look forward to helping relieve your knee pain once and for all.