Howard Marans MD: What are the Treatment Options for Elbow Bursitis?

Elbow bursitis is caused by inflammation of the bursa. The bursa is a small fluid filled sac which provides lubrication and cushion among tissues and bones. The bursa sac is located at the tip of the elbow, forming a soft lubricating cover when a person extends and bends the elbow. When the sac is swollen or inflamed, the bursa will produce more fluid. The fluid buildup will create pain in the area. People who do repetitive work tend to develop elbow bursitis over time. Treatment options for elbow bursitis can be either surgical or non-surgical.


Symptoms of Elbow Bursitis


Seek the expert opinion of a health care professional to determine if the symptoms are due to elbow bursitis.


- One of the first symptoms to appear with elbow bursitis is a swollen area at the tip of the elbow. The swelling of the elbow can become painful as the bursa sac begins to stretch.

- The swelling in the elbow can limit movement.

- The elbow is stiff feeling, adding to the pain.

- When the elbow is touched, the extra pressure creates more pain.

- The swollen bursa sac protrudes out from the elbow tip.

-  The tip of the elbow may become red and warm to the touch. The redness indicates an infection in the bursa sac.


Treatment Options for Elbow Bursitis


The best treatment option should be discussed with an experienced doctor. In the Southern California area, Dr. Howard Marans has had over 20 years of consistent experience in one location. Treatment options for people suffering from elbow bursitis will be determined after collecting an accurate patient history.


Non-surgical Treatments


Elbow bursitis often responds well with non-surgical treatment methods. Surgery is often saved for last after all other options are exhausted.


- Apply ice packs to the swollen area on the elbow.

- Restrict movement of the elbow until inflammation subsides. Repetitive movement is often the cause of elbow bursitis flare up. Giving the injured area a rest can help reduce pain and inflammation.

- Use elbow pads to help protect the inflamed area.

- Take over-the-counter medication to reduce swelling and help with pain management.

- Prescribed medications can help decrease the inflamed area.

- Cortisone injections may be administered to help ease the pain.

- If the bursa sac is protruding, draining the inflamed area may be an option. The draining can be done through the insertion of a needle in the swollen area.

- Physical therapy can be assigned to increase


Surgical Treatment


If non-surgical treatment methods do not help to ease the symptoms, surgery may be needed. The surgery involves removing the inflamed bursa. The removal of the bursa sac will allow for a new one to grow and form. While a patient recovers from surgery, a splint will need to be worn. The splint is used as a method to protect the skin around the removal area.


Individualized treatment options for elbow bursitis will be determined by an experienced doctor. In the southern California area, Dr. Howard Marans can give a complete explanation of all the treatments available for elbow bursitis including non-surgical and surgical options. Howard Marans MD welcomes PPO and will work with all other insurance companies to provide the best treatment available. Please click below to schedule your consultation or call us at 714.979.8981.