Health Encyclopedia

Septic Bursitis

Septic Bursitis

Septic bursitis (infectious bursitis) is an infection of the bursae, the small sacs of fluid that cushion and lubricate an area where tissues—including bone, tendon, ligament, muscle, or skin—rub against one another. Common sites of septic bursitis are the tips of the elbows and the kneecaps.

It may be hard to tell the difference between inflammation in a bursa (bursitis) and infection in a bursa (septic bursitis). Symptoms of septic bursitis may include:

  • Pain, swelling, redness, and warmth in the area of the infected bursa.
  • Fever.
  • Swollen glands near the infected bursa.

Antibiotics and drainage (either drainage with a needle or, sometimes, surgical drainage) are required to treat the infection. Sometimes this requires a hospital stay for intravenous (IV) antibiotic therapy or surgery.

Last Revised: September 27, 2012

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Kenneth J. Koval, MD - Orthopedic Surgery, Orthopedic Trauma

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

© 1995-2013 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

USNWR 2013-2014Magnet Hospital RecognitionConsumer Choice2014 Best DoctorsJoint Commission Report

Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, evaluation or care from your physician or other qualified health care provider.