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is inflammation of the bursa in your knee. The bursa is a fluid-filled sac that acts as a cushion between a bone and a tendon. A tendon is a cord of strong tissue that connects muscles to bones.
Common signs and symptoms of knee bursitis:
- Pain, swelling, or tenderness in your knee
- Decreased movement or stiffness of your knee
- Red, warm, skin over your knee
- A grating or grinding sound or feeling when you move your knee
Call your doctor if:
- Your pain and swelling increase.
- Your symptoms do not improve with treatment.
- You have a fever.
- You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.
may include any of the following:
- NSAIDs , such as ibuprofen, help decrease swelling, pain, and fever. NSAIDs can cause stomach bleeding or kidney problems in certain people. If you take blood thinner medicine, always ask your healthcare provider if NSAIDs are safe for you. Always read the medicine label and follow directions.
- Aspirin helps relieve pain and swelling. Take aspirin exactly as directed by your healthcare provider.
- Antibiotics help fight an infection caused by bacteria.
- Steroids help relieve pain and swelling. Steroid injections are given directly into the painful area. Steroid pills may be given for a short time.
- Surgery may be used to remove your bursa. Surgery is only done when other treatments do not work.
Manage your symptoms:
- Rest your knee as much as possible to decrease pain and swelling. Slowly start to do more each day. Return to your daily activities as directed.
- Apply ice to help decrease swelling and pain. Ice may also help prevent tissue damage. Use an ice pack, or put crushed ice in a plastic bag. Cover it with a towel and place it on your knee for 15 to 20 minutes, 3 to 4 times each day, as directed.
- Apply heat to help decrease pain and stiffness. Apply heat on the area for 15 to 20 minutes, 3 to 4 times each day, as directed.
- Apply compression to decrease swelling. Healthcare providers may wrap your knee with tape or an elastic bandage to decrease swelling. Loosen the elastic bandage if you start to lose feeling in your toes.
- Elevate your knee above the level of your heart as often as you can. This will help decrease swelling and pain. Prop your lower leg on pillows or blankets to keep it elevated comfortably. Do not put the pillow directly under your knee.
- Go to physical therapy, if directed. A physical therapist can teach you exercises to improve your range of motion and increase knee strength.
Prevent knee bursitis:
- Stretch, warm up, and cool down when you exercise. This will help loosen your muscles and decrease stress on your knees. Rest between workouts.
- Protect your knees. Use kneepads when you kneel on a hard surface and when you play sports. Stand and walk around every 20 minutes if you have to kneel for a long period of time.
Follow up with your doctor as directed:
Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.
Learn more about Knee Bursitis (Ambulatory Care)
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