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Definition of Synovitis

Inflammation of the Synvial Tissue of a Joint


Updated December 28, 2013

Definition: In certain situations, the synovium (the lining of the joints) may become thickened and inflamed. Normally only a few cell layers thick, the synovium can become thickened, more cellular, and engorged with fluid in the condition called synovitis.

Often seen in arthritic conditions, and most pronounced in rheumatoid arthritis, synovitis can cause pain and inflammation within the affected joint. Treatment usually consists of anti-inflammatory medications (e.g. Advil, Motrin), but may also include cortisone injections into the joint. Surgical removal of the inflamed synovium, a synovectomy, may also be needed if the synovitis is persistent.

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