Bursitis and tendinitis are both common conditions that cause swelling
around muscles and bones. They occur most often in the shoulder, elbow,
wrist, hip, knee, or ankle.
A bursa is a small, fluid-filled sac that acts as a cushion between a bone
and other moving body parts such as muscles, tendons, or skin. Bursae
are found throughout the body. Bursitis occurs when a bursa becomes swollen.
A tendon is a flexible band of tissue that connects muscles to bones. Tendons
can be small, like those found in the hand or ankle, or large, like the
Achilles tendon in the heel. Tendons help create movement by making the
muscles push or pull the bones in different ways. Tendinitis is the severe
swelling of a tendon.
What Causes These Conditions?
People get bursitis by overusing a joint. It can also be caused by direct
trauma. It usually occurs at the knee or elbow. Kneeling or leaning your
elbows on a hard surface for a long time can make bursitis start. Tendinitis
usually occurs after repeated injury to a certain area such as the wrist
or ankle. Tendons become less flexible with age and become more prone
Doing the same kinds of movements every day or putting stress on joints
increases the risk for both conditions. People like carpenters, gardeners,
musicians, and athletes often get bursitis or tendinitis.
arthritis, gout, thyroid disease, and diabetes can also cause swelling of a bursa
or tendon. Both bursitis and tendinitis are more frequent the older you get.
What Parts of the Body Are Affected?
Tendinitis causes pain and soreness around a joint. Some common forms of
tendinitis are named after the sports that increase their risk. They include
tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow, pitcher’s shoulder, swimmer’s
shoulder, and jumper’s knee.