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What Are the Treatments for Bone Spurs on the Leg Bone?

By Nicki Wolf ; Updated August 14, 2017

Bone spurs, also called osteophytes, occur as bony growths along the bones, including the bones of the leg. Bone spurs may cause pain when they come in contact with nerves and bones. These growths often form in joints, like the leg joints of the hip, knee and ankle, but also commonly occur in the locations where ligaments and tendons attach to the bone. Various medications or even surgery may be recommended for treatment of bone spurs on the leg bone.

Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs

A prescription for non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, also called NSAIDs, may help ease pain caused by bone spur irritation. According to Nathan Wei, M.D., decreasing inflammation in the tissue surrounding the bone spurs, including the leg joints of the knee, hip and ankle, can reduce pain. The American College of Gastroenterology warns that using NSAIDs may cause stomach ulcers or other gastrointestinal side effects

Cortisone Injections

Cortisone injections may reduce pain and inflammation resulting from irritation by bone spurs in the leg joints. The hips and the knees are among the most common sites of cortisone shots, reports MayoClinic.com. These injections normally consist of a corticosteroid medication and a local anesthetic. Side effects may include joint infection, thinning or death of nearby bones, nerve damage and weakness or rupture of tendons.

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Surgery

Physicians may recommend surgery to remove bone spurs in the joints located in the leg, like the knees and hips, particularly if these spurs have caused damage associated with osteoarthritis, a degeneration condition that wears away cartilage in the joint. According to the Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine department at the University of Washington, removing bone spurs is a vital part of joint replacement surgery when treating severe osteoarthritis caused by these growths.

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