What is pes anserine bursitis?

Updated: May 08, 2018
  • Author: P Mark Glencross, MD, MPH, FACOEM, FAAPMR; Chief Editor: Milton J Klein, DO, MBA  more...
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Answer

Pes anserinus bursitis (also referred to as anserine or pes anserine bursitis) is an inflammatory condition of the medial knee. Especially common in certain patient populations, it often coexists with other knee disorders. [1] Diagnosis of pes anserine bursitis should be considered when there is spontaneous pain inferomedial to the knee joint.

Bursae are small synovial tissue–lined structures that help different tissues glide over one another, as when a tendon slides over another tendon or bone. Bursae may become painful when irritated, damaged, or infected. The pes anserinus (anserine) bursa, along with its associated tendons, is located along the proximomedial aspect of the tibia.

Community-dwelling older adults can also present with complaints of knee pain in which pes anserine bursitis and other nonarticular conditions may play a role. Sporting activities, diabetes, obesity, and female sex are also associated risk factors that have been reported.

Pes anserine bursitis is primarily a self-limiting condition, which responds well to an exercise/stretching program. [2] Recalcitrant cases should be referred to a specialist to confirm the diagnosis and to rule out other causes of the patient’s pain (eg, proximal tibial plateau stress fracture).


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