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Knee Bursitis

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Knee Bursitis

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Knee Bursitis Treatment in Dubai at Emirates Hospitals Group. Our orthopedic department is home to some of the best orthopedic surgeons in Dubai, having UK and German board-certifications. These specialists bring unparalleled expertise to the diagnosis and treatment of various orthopedic conditions, including knee bursitis, ensuring our patients receive the highest standard of care.

Knee Bursitis: Understanding the Problem

The knee joint is surrounded by several bursae, each located at specific points where friction is high. Inflammation of any of these bursae can lead to knee bursitis. Commonly affected bursae include:

  • Prepatellar bursitis (kneecap bursitis): This occurs over the kneecap (patella).
  • Infrapatellar bursitis (baker’s cyst): This bursitis develops behind the knee and can sometimes present as a Baker’s cyst.
  • Pes anserine bursitis (pes anserine bursitis): Located on the inner side of the knee below the joint.
  • Iliotibial band friction syndrome (ITBFS): This involves inflammation of the bursa on the outer side of the knee.

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Causes of Knee Bursitis

Several factors can contribute to knee bursitis, including:

  • Overuse: Repetitive activities like kneeling, squatting, or running can irritate the bursae.
  • Direct injury: A blow to the knee can inflame the bursa.
  • Improper form: Incorrect technique during exercise can put excessive stress on the bursae.
  • Underlying conditions: Rheumatoid arthritis, gout, and certain infections can also cause bursitis.

Symptoms of Knee Bursitis

The symptoms of knee bursitis vary depending on the location of the inflamed bursa. Here are some general signs to watch out for:

  • Pain: Pain is the most common symptom, typically localized to the area of the affected bursa.
  • Tenderness: The area around the inflamed bursa will be tender to the touch.
  • Swelling: Swelling may be noticeable, especially over the inflamed bursa.
  • Redness: In some cases, the skin over the affected area may appear red and warm.
  • Stiffness: Bursitis can cause stiffness in the knee, limiting your range of motion.

When to Seek Medical Attention

While knee bursitis often improves with conservative treatment, some situations require medical attention from the Knee Injury Clinic at Emirates Hospitals Group:

  • Severe pain: If the pain is unbearable and interferes with daily activities, a doctor’s evaluation is crucial.
  • Persistent symptoms: If symptoms persist for more than a few weeks despite home care, a doctor’s visit is recommended.
  • Redness or warmth: These signs could indicate an infection in the bursa.
  • Fever: Fever in conjunction with knee pain can be a sign of an underlying infection.
  • Inability to bend or straighten the knee: Significant loss of movement in the knee joint warrants medical attention.

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Diagnosis of Knee Bursitis

Our experienced doctors at the Knee Injury Clinic will conduct a thorough evaluation to diagnose knee bursitis. This typically involves:

  • Detailed Medical History: Your doctor will inquire about your symptoms, daily activities, and any history of injuries or conditions that might contribute to bursitis.
  • Physical Examination: The doctor will visually examine the knee and assess for swelling, tenderness, range of motion, and stability.
  • Imaging Tests: X-rays are often used to rule out bone fractures. In some cases, an ultrasound may be used to visualize the bursa and assess the extent of inflammation. An MRI scan may be necessary if an infection or other underlying conditions are suspected.

Treatment Procedures

Non-Surgical Treatments

Most cases of knee bursitis can be effectively managed with non-surgical treatments:

  • Rest and Activity Modification: Avoiding activities that aggravate the condition and allowing time for the knee to heal.
  • Ice Application: Applying ice to the affected area to reduce pain and swelling.
  • Compression and Elevation: Using a compression bandage and elevating the leg to minimize swelling.
  • Medications: Anti-inflammatory medications, such as ibuprofen, to reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Physical Therapy: A tailored physical therapy program to strengthen the muscles around the knee, improve flexibility, and reduce stress on the bursa.
  • Aspiration: Draining excess fluid from the bursa to relieve pain and reduce swelling.
  • Corticosteroid Injections: Corticosteroid injections may be administered to reduce inflammation and provide longer-term relief.

Surgical Intervention

Surgery is rarely needed for knee bursitis but may be considered in severe or chronic cases:

  • Bursa Removal: Surgical removal of the inflamed bursa may be necessary if the condition does not respond to other treatments or if there are recurrent infections. This procedure, called a bursectomy, is performed to alleviate symptoms and prevent recurrence.

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Recovery Process and Protocols

Post-Treatment Recovery

Recovery from knee bursitis treatment varies depending on the method used:

  • Non-Surgical Recovery: Typically involves several weeks of rest, activity modification, and physical therapy. Patients are encouraged to gradually resume normal activities as symptoms improve.
  • Post-Aspiration/Injections: Recovery is relatively quick, with most patients experiencing relief soon after the procedure. It is important to follow up with physical therapy to prevent recurrence.
  • Post-Surgical Recovery: Surgical recovery involves a structured rehabilitation program. Initial stages focus on pain management and swelling reduction, followed by physical therapy to restore strength and range of motion. Full recovery can take several weeks to months, depending on the individual’s condition and the extent of the surgery.

Rehabilitation Protocols

  • Phase 1 (Acute Phase): Emphasizes pain and swelling reduction through rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE).
  • Phase 2 (Subacute Phase): Focuses on restoring range of motion and beginning gentle strengthening exercises. Physical therapy sessions are crucial during this phase.
  • Phase 3 (Strengthening Phase): Involves more intensive strength training and stability exercises to rebuild muscle strength and improve knee function.
  • Phase 4 (Functional Phase): Prepares patients for a return to daily activities and sports. Exercises focus on agility, balance, and coordination.

Frequently Asked Questions

Knee bursitis can result from repetitive movements, prolonged pressure on the knee, or direct trauma. It is often seen in individuals who engage in activities that place stress on the knees, such as athletes, gardeners, carpet layers, and people who frequently kneel.

Our orthopedic specialists diagnose knee bursitis through a combination of medical history review, physical examination, and imaging tests. During the physical exam, the doctor checks for pain, swelling, and range of motion. Imaging techniques like X-rays, MRI, and ultrasound help confirm the diagnosis and rule out other conditions. In some cases, fluid aspiration from the bursa may be performed for analysis.

Non-surgical treatments for knee bursitis include rest, ice application, compression, elevation (RICE), anti-inflammatory medications, and physical therapy. Aspiration to drain excess fluid and corticosteroid injections to reduce inflammation may also be recommended. These treatments aim to alleviate pain, reduce swelling, and improve knee function.

Surgery is rarely needed for knee bursitis but may be considered in severe or chronic cases that do not respond to non-surgical treatments. Surgical removal of the inflamed bursa, known as a bursectomy, may be performed to alleviate symptoms and prevent recurrence. Our orthopedic surgeons will evaluate your condition and recommend the most appropriate treatment plan.

Recovery from knee bursitis treatment depends on the method used. Non-surgical recovery typically involves several weeks of rest, activity modification, and physical therapy. Recovery after aspiration or injections is relatively quick, with most patients experiencing relief soon after the procedure. Post-surgical recovery includes a structured rehabilitation program focusing on pain management, swelling reduction, and physical therapy to restore strength and range of motion. Full recovery can take several weeks to months, depending on the individual’s condition and the extent of the treatment.

Last update date: 27-06-2024

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