Orthopaedics

Bone Spur – An Overview!

Bone spurs are projections of the bones which develop along the bone edges. Bone spurs themselves are not painful, but they may rub against the adjacent bones and nerves, leading to pain. These spurs are also referred to as osteophytes. Often, they occur near the joints. These can also be noticed where tendons and ligaments connect with the bone. These can also develop on the spine bones. Most of the bone spurs cause no symptoms and may be left undetected for several years.
Bone Spurs - An Overview!

Bone Spurs – Causes

Usually, bone spurs form due to other disorders or conditions. It is the attempt of the body to generate new bone which is caused by osteoarthritis, spondylosis, plantar fasciitis, spinal stenosis or diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis. They may also form due to aging because the body may try to strengthen the weak bones.

Bone Spurs – Symptoms

Most people develop bone spurs without knowing it as it does not produce any inflammation and pain. It relies on the location of the spurs on the body. Bone spurs often form on the spine, knee, fingers, neck or shoulder. Symptoms of bone spurs include restricted movement, numbness, pain or difficulty in swallowing or breathing if developed in the neck region and restricts blood flow to brain.

Bone Spurs – Complications

Complications may occur only when they get separated from the bone and become loose objects. They may become wedged in between the bones, resulting to lock themselves in the place, that restricts the movement. They may also get embedded in the lining of the joint.

Bone Spurs – Treatment

Generally, bone spurs don’t need any surgery until the movement is restricted. Anti inflammatory injection may be given for 4 – 6 weeks, along with rest. Cortisone injections are also beneficial because they reduce joints swelling and give relief from pain. Physical therapy may begin after 1 or 2 weeks to restore the flexibility and strength.

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