Bursae are the small sacs containing synovial fluid which are usually located at the junction of tendon attachment to bone. They act as gliding surface to reduce friction of tendon rubbing over the bone.

Definition: Bursitis is the inflammation of these fluid filled sacs.


  • Injury- Post injury blood or fluid collects inside the sac causing inflammation and gradual increase in size.
  • Overuse
  • Arthritis: Rheumatoid arthritis, gout, Inflammatory arthritis.


  • Swelling,
  • Pain – on movement
  • Sometimes the swelling may burst and starts leaking

Doctor examination:

  • Tender on touching or pressing
  • Local warmth
  • Ball like swelling


  • X ray to rule out bony injury
  • Blood tests: Gout patients to know the level of Sr.uric acid to rule out secondary infection
  • Ultrasound : to identify in case of deep swellings


  • Acute and small bursal swellings can be treated by rest and analgesics.
  • Anti-inflammatory medications for week to 10 days
  • Local steroid injection in case of small swellings.
  • Large swellings aspiration and local steroid injections.
  • Ice packs


Large swelling not responding to conservative management can be treated by excision of the swelling.