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What Do You Do for a Bone Spur?

Bone spurs in humans involve an outgrowth of any bone that takes place across the bone’s edges. A few people may even call it osteophyte. Bone spurs may even take place in any bone, but usually occur in the bone joints i.e. the place, where two or more than two bones come together. They even take place when tendons, ligaments and muscles attached with the bone.

Prognosis associated with the treatment of the bone spurs is good. Especially, recent advancements in the medicine associated with the treatment of arthritis and other related reasons of bone spurs have increased the probability to overcome the problem and thereby, to get well soon. Furthermore, you will find many new and less invasive surgical techniques, which help a lot in the fast recovery of individuals and return to regular activities within less possible span of time.

What Do You Do for a Bone Spur?

What Do You Do for a Bone Spur?

Treatments for the problem of bone spurs depend on different symptoms. Pain is a common symptom of the problem of bone spur.

Anti-inflammatory Medicines: To treat the problem of bone spurs, doctors initially recommend a few common anti-inflammatory medications. The main role of these medicines is to give relieve to the pain and at the same time, to reduce the inflammation, which may take place from bone spurs.

Physical Therapy: Doctors may recommend for physical therapy to relieve the symptoms of bone spurs. Although, physical therapy is unable to remove spurs, it helps in relieving a few related symptoms. For instance, if a patient experiences reduction in regular body motion because of bone spurs problem, physical therapy may help in strengthening the nearby muscles and thereby, boost the motion associated with bone joints. Physical therapy involves includes cold packs, massage, strengthening exercises and ultrasound treatments.

Steroid Injections (Cortisones): In some of the cases, doctors inject cortisone or a steroid injection in the bone joint of patients. This helps in reduction of pain from the bone spurs. Depending on the involved joint, doctors perform these injections in the regular clinics or in the X-ray clinics. For instance, in case of bone spurs in spine or hip joint, doctors perform injections by using a suitable X-ray machine to allow proper placement of the injection. Other than this, doctors recommend for a few anti-inflammatory and over-the-counter type medicines to treat the pain. In addition, a physical therapist or a doctor may recommend a few simple and easy stretching exercises to perform in the home.

Medical Devices to Treat Bone Spurs: If bone spurs affect any patient on his heel or foot, a doctor may suggest for special inserts or pads for shoes, known commonly as orthotics. The main role of orthotics is to remove pressure from the bone spurs.

Surgery for Bone Spurs: In some of the cases, if doctors fail to control symptoms with medicines, therapies and any other conservative treatment, they choose for the option of surgery. The main objective of the surgery is the removal of bone spurs to allow a normal bone joint or simply to remove pressure on tendons, muscles, nerves or ligaments. Surgical procedure may help in the removal of bone spurs in simple way. However, in some of the cases, bone spur removal may involve a large surgery i.e. joint replacement surgery.

Preventing Bone Spur Formation

Individuals should opt to maintain a healthy and an active lifestyle to stay fit to reduce the symptoms associated with bone spurs. In addition, one should make sure to maintain a healthy body weight to reduce loads on bone joints. Reason for this is that load on bone joints result in bone spurs, particularly in the heels and knees.


  1. Mayo Clinic Staff. (2021). Bone spurs. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/bone-spurs/symptoms-causes/syc-20370212
  2. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. (2020). Osteoarthritis. https://www.niams.nih.gov/health-topics/osteoarthritis
  3. University of Michigan Medicine. (n.d.). Bone spurs. Michigan Medicine. https://www.uofmhealth.org/conditions-treatments/orthopaedics/bone-spurs
  4. Pazzinatto, M. F., de Andrade Lima Chaves, G., Ciolac, E. G., Gomes, P. S. C., & Lobo Marchetti, P. H. (2019). Ultrasound-Guided Corticosteroid Injection for the Treatment of Greater Trochanteric Pain Syndrome: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Pain Medicine, 20(3), 592–600. doi:10.1093/pm/pny162

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:July 31, 2023

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