Pre Patellar Bursitis


Prepatellar bursitis, also known as Housemaid's Knee, is a common cause of swelling and pain above the kneecap. The name Housemaid's Knee for this inflammation of the bursa overlying the patella comes from its association with individuals whose work necessitates kneeling for extended periods of time. Prepatellar bursitis is common in professions such as carpet layers and gardeners.


location of the prepatellar bursa


A bursa is a thin sack filled with the body's own natural lubricating oil. This slippery sack allows different tissues such as muscle, tendon, and skin slide over bony surfaces without catching. These sacks are normally very thin (like a plastic bag with the air sucked out of it), but they do present a potential space that can become inflamed and irritated. This is what is known as bursitis. If the inflammation is associated with trauma and a break in the skin, the bursa can become infected, this is called infected bursitis.


The symptoms of prepatellar bursitis or knee bursitis are a swelling over the kneecap which can cause limited range of motion of the joint. The swelling is within the bursa, not the knee joint itself. Symptoms of prepatellar bursitis are usually aggravated by kneeling, and relieve when sitting still.


What is the treatment of prepatellar bursitis (knee bursitis)?
Treatment of prepatellar bursitis begins with avoidance of the aggravating activity. In some individuals, drainage or excision of the bursa may be indicated. In cases of infection, it is important that antibiotics are also administered. a protective sleeve which alleviates pressure on the area may also be used.