Knee bursitis


Knee bursitis is acute or chronic disease, which affects synovial bursa of a joint. It has inflammation source – fluid that contained in a joint is being infected, which cause the inflammation.


Factors that cause knee bursitis:

  • kneecap trauma;
  • excess joint stress;
  • chronic or acute infectious diseases, which affect bursa;
  • scratches or minor skin damage;
  • serious bruise.

Factors of influenceKnee Bursae

Knee bursitis is a result of arthritis or gout. Additional causes are:

  • autoimmune diseases;
  • metabolism dysfunction;
  • allergy.


Knee joint consists of cartilage surrounded by three bursas. Any of these parts can be affected by pathology. The classification of the disease divided into:

  • posttraumatic prepatellar bursitis – affects kneecap bursa;
  • Baker’s cyst (picture) – affects lower part of the knee;
  • suprapatellar knee bursitis is located under the knee. Causative determinants of the disease can be various injuries of knee tendon.


Clinical situation of bursitis is presented in following symptoms:Swollen knee

  • knee bursitis can be identified by pain in affected bursa, when touched;
  • range of motion of the knee is decreased, patient experiences certain stiffness;
  • knee joint is swollen and red;
  • additional symptoms –fatigue, weakness, low workability;
  • hyperthermia (common and topical, around affected knee).

Symptoms of the disease may occur with different severity, but it’s recommended to visit a doctor as any of them appeared.

More detailed information about causes of bursitis and its symptoms on video:


To make a diagnosis doctor first analyses clinical symptoms of the disease. The most common type of bursitis is prepatellar posttraumatic bursitis, which is characterized by inflammation of kneecap in the front part of the knee.

There are no specific laboratory analyses that help to detect suprapatellar knee bursitis. That’s why orthopedist has to study all the disease symptoms, define causes of discomfort occurrence and pain in the knee joint, and detect the localization of inflammation in order to administer proper treatment.

Ultrasonography and X-ray must be administered as well.

If collection of symptoms is not enough to define chronic septic bursitis, thus magnetic-resonance tomography may detect the disease for sure. Arthrocentesis and analysis of synovial fluid of knee bursa is necessary, that may help to define an infection.

This method allow defining of the inflammation type, which is typical for septic bursitis, also detects patient’s sensitivity to certain antibiotics, type of microflora in fluid of knee sac. All the above mentioned studies help to treat bursitis more effectively.


Treatment of knee bursitis will be simple if external bursas were affected, in other words if infra-patellar or chronic septic supra-patellar bursitides were diagnosed.

It’s recommended to exclude infections, which might cause the disease – spirochete, brucella and gonococcus, in order to increase effectiveness of medication treatment.

Infections and acute phase

Infections inspected by analysis of clinical factors, bacteriological studies, and result of serological reaction of patient.Warm compress

Early stages of acute bursitis require use of tight fixing bandages and warm compresses (pic). It prevents patient from disease progression into septic chronic bursitis.

Chronic and septic bursitis

It’s recommended to needle a synovial bursa and drain an unwanted exudate, in case of complicated chronic bursitis. After the procedure, bursa is cleaned with medications like antiseptics and antibiotics.

Hydrocortisone solution can help to treat chronic septic posttraumatic bursitis of knee joint, which injected directly into the bursa. It’s important to choose proper antiseptic, in order to avoid further complication.

The doctor administers anti-inflammatory medication to remove pain – especially ointments for external use.

Effective treatment of knee bursitis depends on such factors:

  • the stage of morphological changes in joint tissue;
  • disease extension;
  • whether the disease may affect surrounding bursas;
  • patient’s immune specialties;


There are folk methods for knee bursitis treatment, which can effectively reduce symptoms of the disease.

Salt-based compress

Take 1 tablespoon of salt and 1l of boiled water. This folk method has hypertonic effect, in other words it can “remove” fluid out of skin.

Take a fragment of wool fabric and wrap around the joint, cover with polyethylene and warm scarf. Hold for 8 hours, better at night. It’s recommended to use this folk method once a day during a week.

Cabbage compresses

Remove veins from a cabbage leaf. Then soft it with rolling pin until juice comes out. Rub the affected area with honey first and then apply the cabbage leaf, wrap this compress with polyethylene and warm scarf.

This folk method has antiseptic and anti-infective effect. Hold the compress for 4-8 hours.


Supra-patellar or infra-patellar bursitis can be treated with tincture made of kerosene and walnut. It has antiparasitic effect and removes inflammation.

Spread the tincture over the knee joint and rub carefully. Cover with polyethylene and wrap with scarf. Leave the compress for night.

Some more recipes for bursitis treatment with folk methods on video:

The disease development can be provoked by various causes – from trauma to infection of synovial bursa. Whether to treat bursitis by alternative or traditional methods must be decided only by a doctor, after combined examination.


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