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Bone Spurs


Updated July 15, 2014

hip arthritis - bone spurs - osteophytes

Bone spurs are shown around an arthritic hip joint

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Definition: Bone spurs, or osteophytes, are bony projections that form along joints, and are often seen in conditions such as arthritis. Bone spurs are largely responsible for limitations in joint motion and can cause pain.

The reason for bone spur formation is the body is trying to increase the surface area of the joint to better distribute weight across a joint surface that has been damaged by arthritis or other conditions. Unfortunately, this is largely wasted effort by our body as the bone spur can become restrictive and painful.

Bone spurs themselves are not problematic, but they are a signal of an underlying problem that often needs to be addressed. Bone spurs are often documented to help assess the severity of a condition such as arthritis.

Also Known As: osteophyte
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