A Guide to Shoulder Bursitis & How to Treat it.

What is Shoulder Bursitis?

Shoulder Bursitis

Shoulder Bursitis

Shoulder bursitis is a condition that affects the small fluid filled sac called bursae. Most often they are located between the joints in the shoulder, elbows, and hips. It often is found in joints that are used repetitively. This means that doing something over and over again at work or home can give a person shoulder bursitis.


When you throw a baseball over and over again during a game this often results in shoulder bursitis. Kneeling while laying tile for floors or carpets on floors is another way to injure the shoulder. Sitting for long periods of time on very hard surfaces like chairs or even on the floor watching TV is another way to aggravate this condition.


Shoulder Bursitis Symptoms

When you get older this increases the risk of developing this disease. There are many different symptoms for the shoulder pain that signals this condition. The shoulders may feel achy and stiff, a person may ache when moving or touching the spot, and the shoulder becomes red and swollen. A doctor should be consulted when joint pain becomes unbearable. When pain lasts more than two weeks its time for a checkup. A fever and sharp shooting pains signal that treatment for shoulder bursitis is needed.


Symptoms often are pain in the shoulder on the outside area, pain that spreads down the arm, and inability to put arms over shoulders. Often simple tasks like putting something on the shelf or washing hair will cause shoulder pain.


Shoulder Bursitis Treatment

The doctor when treating shoulder busitis and shoulder injury will take a medical history and perform a physical exam. Ultrasound or MRIs are often used when the locations cannot be determined by regular physical exam. The doctor may order blood tests and analysis of fluid from shoulder joints to find the locations of the pain.


Often treatment of shoulder bursitis can be rest, ice pack applied to the shoulders a few times a day and an antibiotic medication. Many doctors will give you exercises to perform to reduce pain in the joints and promote flexability. Sometimes physical therapy is recommended when the condition is more serious.


Sometimes the doctor injects a cortiscoid drug at the site to relive pain. This often results in quick pain relief. Sometimes a condition called chronic bursitis is treated with injection in combination with exercise. Often the doctor will stop you from doing the movement that caused pain in the shoulder.


The doctor sometimes has your shoulder put in a sling or tapes the shoulder to provide relief from pain when you sleep or work. Ice is another treatment often prescribed that is used for periods of 20 to 30 minutes. This is done every two to four hours. After ice treatment patients often apply a heating pad to the area. It will help increase blood circulation to the shoulders.


Often topical medicine can be applied to painful shoulder joints like analgesics such as wintergreen and brand names like BenGay or Ice-Hot. Liocaine patches are patches with a numbing agent that stops the signal of pain to the brain. These patches can only be prescribed by the physician.


A minimally invasive surgery is called an antroscope. It is a tiny instruments shaped like a pen that has a small video camera attached to the end. It is inserted through an incision in the shoulder. The camera relays images to a computer screen. It can be used to make a diagnose and carry out surgery on the person.



During surgery several incisions are made so that the instrument can be inserted into the shoulder and instruments. The camera is used to view the bones, ligaments, and tendons of the shoulder. After that using small surgical instruments the surgeon make the repairs to the shoulder. This type of surgery helps cut down on pain and scarring.


This type of shoulder bursitis surgery has less risk and complications, a quicker recovery, and most often is done as an outpatient. These are some of the treatments for shoulder bursitis and shoulder pain for patients.



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