Knee Bursitis.Knee bursitis occurs most commonly in carpenters, builders, gardeners and cleaners. Let me explain further.
The reason for this is that the cause of knee bursitis is often due to kneeling for excess periods of time. The most common form of knee bursitis is pre-patellar bursitis. This is when the bursa at the top of your knee becomes inflamed, swollen and sometimes infected. It is also called "housemaids knee", as it is associated with kneeling occupations. However, some of my male patients dont like being labelled with "housemaids knee"!
Knee bursitis is painful. It is usually associated with pain at the top of your knee when kneeling, climbing stairs, getting up from sitting and when direct pressure is placed on the top of your knee cap. It can occur in conjunction with tendonitis and can often be missed in diagnosis. If you have a swelling localised to the top of your knee, bursitis is a possible cause.
Knee bursitis means that the bursa in your knee is red hot and swollen. It is usually visible but not always. So if you have localised pain and tenderness to the top of your kneecap seek a medical opinion immediately. Early intervention can save you weeks of pain and weeks off work!
Treatment of knee bursitis involves treating the bursitis as well as treating the cause. Treating the bursitis starts with ice and rest. If your bursa is infected you may require antibiotic treatment quickly.
Usually, bursitis settles with ice and rest but in some cases surgery is required. This is where the bursa is removed. In my opinion surgery should be avoided unless all else fails. If your bursitis does not respond to ice and rest I recommend a cortisone injection. Cortisone is a local but strong anti-inflammatory drug. It is very effective in the treatment of bursitis.
Treating the cause of knee bursitis is a different story. You must attend a good physiotherapist who will identify the cause of your bursitis. Common causes of knee bursitis are muscle imbalances where one muscle is too strong and another too weak. Exercises will resolve this problem. If the cause of your bursitis is due to kneeling on your knees for too long your physiotherapist will advise you on the need for regular breaks from kneeling in conjunction with administering kneeling pads. These are pads which attach to your knee and protect your knees against the hardness of the floor. They can be very effective indeed.
If you do not address the cause of your knee bursitis it may return again. Actually, it is almost guaranteed that it will return again. Do not take this risk as the more often that you suffer from bursitis the more damage that is being done to your knee. Do your exercises and take your physiotherapist advice seriously.
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