What causes bursitis to flare up on ankle?

Answered by Michael Wilson

Bursitis is a condition characterized by inflammation of the bursa, which is a small fluid-filled sac that acts as a cushion between bones, tendons, and muscles. In the case of ankle bursitis, the bursa located near the ankle joint becomes inflamed. There are several factors that can cause ankle bursitis to flare up.

1. Overuse of the ankle joint: One of the most common causes of ankle bursitis flare-ups is overuse or repetitive stress on the joint. Activities that involve constant or excessive pressure on the ankle, such as running, jumping, or walking for long periods, can lead to irritation and inflammation of the bursa.

2. Poorly fitted shoes: Wearing shoes that do not provide proper support or do not fit correctly can increase the risk of developing ankle bursitis. Ill-fitting shoes can cause friction and pressure on the ankle joint, leading to irritation and inflammation of the bursa.

3. Trauma or injury: Ankle bursitis can also occur as a result of a direct blow or trauma to the ankle. This can lead to swelling and inflammation of the bursa. In some cases, the trauma may cause bleeding into the bursa, further aggravating the condition.

4. Infection: In rare cases, ankle bursitis may be caused by an infection in the bursa. This can occur if bacteria enter the bursa through a skin wound or as a complication of another infection in the surrounding structures. An infected bursa can cause severe pain, swelling, redness, and warmth in the ankle area.

5. Inflammatory conditions: Certain inflammatory conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis or gout, can increase the risk of developing ankle bursitis. These conditions can cause chronic inflammation in the joints, including the ankle, which can lead to bursitis flare-ups.

It is important to note that each individual may have different triggers for ankle bursitis flare-ups. Some people may be more susceptible to certain causes, while others may not experience symptoms unless multiple factors are present.

In my personal experience, I have dealt with ankle bursitis flare-ups due to overuse of the joint during long-distance running. The repetitive impact on my ankle joint caused irritation and inflammation of the bursa, leading to pain and discomfort. By modifying my training routine, wearing supportive shoes, and incorporating rest days, I was able to manage the condition and prevent further flare-ups.