What is the best treatment for bursitis?

Rest is the primary treatment for bursitis. Avoid activity to prevent further injury and give the area time to heal. Especially stop doing the repetitive activity that irritated the bursa.

What can I do at home for pain relief?

Self-care measures at home can often help relieve pain until you’re fully recovered. You can:

  • Elevate the injured area.
  • Ice the area if sudden injury (not repetitive motion) caused the pain.
  • Apply heat to ongoing pain.
  • Use a splint, sling or brace to keep the injured area from moving.
  • Take over-the-counter medications to relieve pain and swelling, such as ibuprofen or naproxen.

What other treatment options are available?

Your healthcare provider may recommend advanced treatment options such as:

  • Antibiotics if you have an infection.
  • Physical therapy to increase range of motion.
  • Occupational therapy to learn how to move in ways that don’t stress the area.
  • Injection of a corticosteroid medication to quickly decrease inflammation and pain.
  • Surgery to repair the bursa, if other treatments don’t work after six months to a year.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 05/29/2020.

References

  • American College of Rheumatology. Tendinitis (Bursitis). Accessed 6/1/2020.
  • Arthritis Foundation. Bursitis. Accessed 6/1/2020.
  • FamilyDoctor.org/American Academy of Family Physicians. Bursitis of the Hip. Accessed 6/1/2020.
  • Merck Manual. Bursitis. Accessed 6/1/2020.
  • National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Bursitis. Accessed 6/1/2020.

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