The shoulder joint contains three bones, the rotator cuff and various ligaments that all must move freely to allow function. Inside the ball and socket joint of the shoulder is a bursa, a fluid-filled sac that cushions the rotator cuff tendons from the surrounding bones. When the bursa becomes inflamed, it is called bursitis, which can cause shoulder pain and impingement. Dr. Steven Struhl at Shoulders & Knees offers shoulder bursitis treatment at our medical facilities in Westchester, NY, and NYC.
Causes and Symptoms of Shoulder Bursitis
Unlike most joints, tendons that create the rotator cuff in the shoulder are surrounded by bone. The bursa offers a soft barrier between tendons and bone, allowing smooth movement. Injuries, infection, bone spurs or overuse can cause irritation to the bursa and tendons in the shoulder joint, causing swelling and inflammation. Since the bursa and rotator cuff tendons are trapped under bone, this swelling can restrict the joint. Those with shoulder bursitis may have the following symptoms:
- Swelling and redness around the shoulder joint
- Restricted movement of the shoulder
- Pain and tenderness on the tip or outside of the shoulder
- Pain when reaching upward
While mild cases of shoulder bursitis can be overcome with rest and OTC anti-inflammatory medications, more severe cases may need treatment. The bursa and tendons can thicken over time, resulting in shoulder impingement. Cortisone injections may be used to relieve inflammation and pain. For chronic shoulder bursitis, surgery could be required to increase space by removing bone spurs or bone. This can usually be performed through minimally-invasive arthroscopic surgery for quicker recovery.
If you suffer from shoulder bursitis that is causing pain and limiting your mobility, contact us at Shoulders & Knees. We can schedule a consultation and exam with orthopedic surgeon and shoulder specialist Dr. Steven Struhl at our clinic in NYC or Westchester.