About Shoulder Bursitis
The bursa is a small fluid filled sac that sits between tissues to allow for smooth gliding. The subacromial-subdeltoid bursa (shoulder bursa) sits above the rotator cuff tendons and below the acromion, the outermost bony prominence of the shoulder blade. Shoulder bursitis occurs when there is acute inflammation of the bursa that can lead to pain and limited range of motion. Sometimes if the bursitis is chronic it can cause a thickening of the bursa which may lead to even more impairment.
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Symptoms of Shoulder Bursitis
The subacromial-subdeltoid bursa can become inflamed or become irritated secondary to a rotator cuff injury or trauma. The bursa can also become irritated if there is a calcific deposit within the rotator cuff tendon which can happen from overuse. The bursa can become repetitively irritated by the “impingement” that occurs when a calcium deposit catches as it slides underneath the acromion when raising your arm. These factors may all contribute to tenderness and pain in the shoulder bursa.
How Is Shoulder Bursitis Diagnosed?
Shoulder bursitis may be diagnosed at Ospina Medical through exams and diagnostic tests. Potential methods to help verify the issue include:
- A physical evaluation to assess the range of motion, tenderness, swelling, and any signs of inflammation
- X-rays to help rule out different, more structural shoulder conditions, such as fractures or bone abnormalities
- Ultrasounds to visualize the bursa and detect signs of inflammation or fluid accumulation
- An MRI to provide detailed images of the shoulder's soft tissues, including the bursa
- Anesthetic injections to numb the bursa and verify that it is the source of pain
Treatments for Shoulder Bursitis
Cortisone injections typically work very well to help relieve patients from shoulder bursitis. The duration of relief is highly variable but may allow for a patient to more comfortably complete physical therapy and strengthen the shoulder. Ospina Medical also offers Regenexx regenerative medicine procedures such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) that can be used to treat and heal inflamed bursa. If shoulder bursitis is caused by calcific tendinosis, then debridement or removal of the calcium deposit may help as well. This can be done with a procedure that utilizes live ultrasound guidance and a needle to help break up the calcific deposit and allow for more movement in the shoulder.
If you suffer from shoulder bursitis or limited range of motion, contact Ospina Medical to schedule an appointment. We offer a variety of treatment options and our specialists are well versed in treating shoulder pathologies. Book your consultation at Ospina Medical in Midtown Manhattan today.
Shoulder Bursitis FAQ
What causes shoulder bursitis?
Shoulder bursitis can be caused by a variety of factors, including overuse, repetitive movements, an injury, the effects of aging, an infection, calcium deposits, or a genetic predisposition.
Do treatments for shoulder bursitis hurt?
No, most patients don't find the various treatment options for shoulder bursitis painful. At Ospina Medical, we offer treatments, including Regenexx injections and removal of calcium deposits. We can include an anesthetic to numb the treatment area to help make your treatment more comfortable. During your consultation, we will review your options and help you create a plan best suited for your needs.
How can I treat shoulder bursitis at home?
Some simple at-home treatments for minor shoulder bursitis include:
- Resting the affected shoulder
- Icing the area
- Taking an over-the-counter pain relievers and NSAIDs
- Doing stretching and rehabilitation exercises
- Wearing a shoulder brace
What Are the Causes of Bursitis in the Shoulder?
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