Bursitis is an inflammation of the fluid filled sac that sits between tendons and bones. The purpose of the bursa is to minimize friction when the tendon pulls on the bone during movement. If muscles and tendons are tight, they can compress the bursa and cause irritation. The bursa is a passive structure so oftentimes you will feel more pain at rest versus with movement.
Treatment for bursitis is to reduce the irritation and inflammation in the bursa. Modalities that reduce inflammation and swelling will help reduce the pain. A physical therapist will determine if the overlying muscles need to be stretched or strengthened to reduce pressure on the bursa. Kinesiology tape, ultrasound, soft tissue mobilization, stretches and strengthening exercises will be utilized to help reduce the pain.
Bursitis can resolve in a few days to a few weeks. Rest is also commonly prescribed and patients will be educated about their condition and what activity modifications are required.