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What is bursitis?

Bursitis is one of the most common repetitive motion injuries experienced by adults. The symptoms of bursitis are very similar to tendinitis, and it can be difficult even for medical professionals to diagnosis the issue without examination and experience.

Bursitis occurs when one or more bursa sac in the body becomes inflamed. A bursa sac is an area that cushions tendons and bones in areas of the body that see a lot of movement and would generate a lot of friction. Elbows, knees and shoulders are all areas where bursa sacs are present, and there are around 150 of these points in the body.

While some bursa sacs are present from the time a person is born, other sacs can develop where repetitive strain or injury occurs. When these sacs -- whether they developed over time or have been present all along -- become inflamed, you experience pain and trouble moving that area of your body. Common areas where this occurs include the hip, knees and elbows.

Bursitis can be chronic, which often has to do with use of the joints over time and general degeneration, or traumatic. Traumatic bursitis could occur when you use a joint or other body part repeatedly in a certain way, which can cause an injury to develop. This is common with workers who do the same movements over and over throughout each day.

Traumatic bursitis is most common for individuals who are under the age of 35, but it can affect those who are older. If you believe you are suffering from bursitis related to your job, you might be able to file a claim for workers' compensation. This is especially true if you are missing work and having to seek medical treatment for your injuries.

Source: WebMD, "Repetitive Motion Injuries," David T. Derrer, MD, accessed July 01, 2016

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