What is Capsulitis and Bursitis?

Capsulitis is the inflammation of the joints capsule that can be caused by repetitive movements, movements that surpass our physiological limit or a fall, hit and bruising.

Pain is often felt when the joint capsular has pressure applied, for example a knee capsulitis pain will be felt when the patient is standing and weight is applied to the joint. Pain can also be felt when the joint is mobilized to its limit passively.

People who have capsulitis can also experience a bulging of the joint or heat radiating from the joint.

When the patient is in the acute phase of capsulitis an Osteopath cannot treat the inflamed area. However, the surrounding areas can be treated with quiromassage.

Once the acute phase has passed, or in chronic cases such as fibrosis and adherences, the technique “cyriax” can be applied 3 times for 2 minute periods followed by passive mobilizations and stretching.

Ice treatments are recommended for capsulitis rather than heat for both Capsulitis and Bursitis.


Bursitis is the inflammation of the protective sacks of synovial fluid that sit around joints.

Bursitis can be caused by a number of reasons, a viral infection, a fall or hit, degenerative diseases and repetitive movements and contusions.

In the case of a vital infection an Osteopath will not treat the patient and the patient should be advised to seek medical attention.

The main symptoms of bursitis are; Pain when the pressure or weight is removed from the joint, pain when moving and when the joints limits are reached as well as a hot sensation in the area.

To test if a patient has bursitis pressure is applied to close the joint and observe if there is a “bouncing” sensation to the joint. If this is the case an Osteopath can apply ice and advise medical attention.

A draining massage can help with both capsulitis and bursitis but on recommendation of a doctor.

For more information regarding our osteopathy or massage treatments for Capsulitis and Bursitis in Barcelona click here.












This post is also available in: Spanish


  • Tratamientos de osteopatía para Capsulitis y Bursitis