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Elbow (Olecranon) Bursitis

Dr.Okoroha

Elbow Bursitis Specialist

People involved in plumbing or air conditioning, which involve a lot of crawling on the elbows, are prone to elbow (olecranon) bursitis. Trauma, a hard blow on the elbow, excessive leaning on the elbow, certain infections or medical conditions may also cause the condition. Elbow bursitis specialist, Dr. Kelechi Okoroha provides diagnosis and individualized non-surgical and surgical management for elbow (olecranon) bursitis in Detroit. Contact Dr. Okoroha’s team for an appointment today!

Anatomy of the Olecranon

The elbow contains a large, curved, pointy bone at the back called the olecranon, which is covered by the olecranon bursa, a small fluid-filled sac that allows smooth movement between the bone and overlying skin.

What is Elbow Bursitis?

Inflammation of the olecranon bursa leads to a condition called olecranon bursitis.

Causes of Elbow Bursitis

The causes of elbow bursitis may include trauma or a hard blow on the elbow, excessive leaning on the elbow, infection by puncture wounds or insect bites, or conditions such as gout and rheumatoid arthritis. People in certain occupations such as plumbing or air conditioning, which involve a lot of crawling on the elbows, are highly prone to this condition.

When an elbow (olecranon) bursitis is suspected it is important to schedule an orthopedic consultation for proper examination and care. Dr. Kelechi Okoroha is elbow bursitis specialist who provides detailed examination and care for patients with elbow (olecranon) bursitis in Detroit, Royal Oak, Sterling Heights, Bloomfield Hills, Dearborn, Michigan and beyond.

Symptoms of Elbow Bursitis

Swelling is the first sign of elbow bursitis. As more and more liquid fills into the bursa, the swelling increases and can cause pain. This pain is generally mild but can increase with direct pressure or bending of the elbow. If the bursa gets infected, your skin can become warm and red, and may spread to other parts of the arm or even the bloodstream if not treated immediately.

Diagnosis of Elbow Bursitis

The diagnosis of elbow (olecranon) bursitis is based on review of your medical history and a thorough physical examination performed by Dr. Okoroha. He may also order an X-ray and biopsy of the bursa fluid to test for infection.

Treatment Options for Elbow Bursitis

After careful review of your history and examination, Dr. Okoroha will provide an individualized treatment plan to help you return to your normal function.

If bursitis is caused due to an infection, Dr. Okoroha may recommend the removal of fluid from the bursa with a needle and prescribe antibiotics. Elbow bursitis not caused by infection can be treated by the following:

  • Elbow pad to cushion your elbow
  • Avoiding activities that place direct pressure on the swollen elbows
  • Taking anti-inflammatory medications to reduce swelling
  • Injection of corticosteroid medication directly into the bursa to relieve pain and swelling

When these methods do not help, the bursa is surgically removed.

Prevention of Elbow Bursitis

Protection of your elbow from excessive friction or wearing elbow pads when you need to lean on your elbows while working may prevent bursitis.

If you have experienced elbow (olecranon) bursitis, please contact Dr. Kelechi Okoroha, orthopedic elbow specialist treating patients in Detroit, Royal Oak, Sterling Heights, Bloomfield Hills, Dearborn, Michigan and beyond.