Massive Prepatellar Bursitis in Cerebral Palsy


This case report describes a 36-year-old African American male with cerebral palsy and bilateral slowly enlarging knee masses. He has 90° fixed flexion knee contractures bilaterally. Although he has poor communication skills, he does not have discomfort while ambulating. He has developed massive bilateral prepatellar bursitis from chronic and repetitive injury to the region bearing his body weight while ambulating. As the result of a protective response, the bursa provides a cushion for the underlying bone prominences of the tibial tubercle and patella. This compensatory mechanism has allowed the patient to have functional, painless household ambulation. (Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances 16(1):23–26, 2007

Herrick J. Siegel, MD, Robert Lopez-Ben, MD, Michael J. Pitt, MD, and William K.
Dunham, MD