June 4th, 2012

Health N' Sports: Prepatellar Bursitis

Staff Report

Health N' Sports: Prepatellar Bursitis
photo from volleyballadvisors.com

Louisville Orthopaedic shares insight on knee pain

As a part of the Louisville Orthopaedic Clinic, the Sports Rehab Team physical therapists are knowledgeable and trained in the latest advancements and techniques available in sports rehabilitation.

On a weekly basis, the Health N’ Sports Update will give information on prevention, recovery, and include special offers, as well as general health tips that would be beneficial to all. If there is a specific topic you’d like to know or hear more about, email future suggestions to editor@catholicsportsnet.com

Prepatellar bursitis is an inflammation of the prepatellar bursa that is situated in front of the patella just under the skin.  It presents with a characteristic swelling in front of the kneecap, NOT within the joint space.

WHO IS AT RISK?         

People who constantly kneel at work (carpet layers, gardeners)

Athletes who participate in sports which direct blows or falls onto the front of the knee are common. Wrestlers are extremely susceptible secondary to the constant friction across the front of the knee.


Pain with activity, tender to touch marked swelling on top of the kneecap, maybe as large as a golf ball or baseball

Swelling typically does not restrict range of motion


  • REST (discontinue activity if too painful to continue…condition is usually self-limiting)          
  • ICE             
  • MEDICATION (over the counter anti-inflammatories); Compression (ace wrap) to reduce swelling        
  • KNEEPADS (to minimize continued irritation)
  • ASPIRATION (draining of the fluid by physician with a needle in the office)
  • PHYSICAL THERAPY (may be necessary to address pain and swelling)

Louisville Orthopaedic Clinic 

Main Office: (502) 897-1794

Physical Therapy: (502) 897-1790

Website: louortho.com

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