Do you participate in sports, exercise, or manual labor? If so, you’re probably prone to aches and pains in and around your joints. When you overdo it, especially with repetitive motion, your musculoskeletal system is at risk of injury. Tendonitis, also known as tendinopathy or tendinitis, is a common type of injury.
Tendons are thick tissue bands that connect bone to muscle. These connective tissues are important components of the musculoskeletal system because they allow you to move. Tendonitis is a broad term that refers to inflammation or irritation of the tendons.
Tennis elbow, Achilles tendonitis, golfer’s elbow, shoulder tendonitis, rotator cuff tendonitis, jumper’s knee, and wrist tendonitis are all common tendon injuries. Repetitive motion is the most common cause of tendonitis. Acute and serious injury or a minor impact on the affected area. This condition can occur anywhere there are tendons, but it is most common in the following areas:
Anyone can get tendonitis, but it is more common in individuals who do repetitive activities, such as:
Other risk factors include the following:
Tendonitis is characterized by sudden inflammation and pain. Symptoms can appear gradually, often after a period of intense activity. These are the most typical signs and symptoms.:
You should see a healthcare provider or physical therapist in the following situations:
Tendonitis affects only a few of the hundreds of tendons in the human body. Because they are connected to fewer blood vessels, these tendons heal slowly after injury due to insufficient blood supply. The following are the most common causes of tendonitis:
Chronic tendinitis is frequently caused by overusing a tendon while playing sports, working, or doing other activities. Chronic tendinitis is frequently caused by repetitive movements, such as those used in sports like tennis and golf or on an assembly line. Acute tendon injuries can also result in tendonitis.
This condition is diagnosed by healthcare providers based on the patient’s symptoms and a physical exam. If the cause is unknown, additional tests such as an MRI and x-rays may be performed. Because magnetic resonance imaging shows soft tissues, it is ideal for identifying an injured tendon. X-rays rule out any bone injuries.
The primary goal of tendonitis treatment is to limit movements that can cause additional tendon inflammation. Depending on the location of the injury, you may need to modify or reduce daily activities such as typing or driving until your symptoms subside. The following are the first-line treatments:
Medical treatment for tendonitis involves the following elements:
Nonsurgical treatment options are recommended by healthcare providers to relieve pain and other symptoms and restore function. Many people find long-term pain relief with alternative treatments such as:
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen can relieve inflammation and help the patient feel better.
Physical therapists work with patients one-on-one to strengthen their tendons and reduce inflammation. They provide tailored physical therapy to help patients achieve their health objectives.
These injections can help relieve pain and inflammation, but doctors only recommend using them for a short time.
Growth factors in platelets promote healing, particularly tendon recovery. Your doctor will blend platelets from one blood sample with another to boost growth factors and platelets. The doctor injects treated blood into the swollen tendon to repair it.
If you have chronic, long-term pain and these treatments only work temporarily or not at all, your doctor may recommend arthroscopic surgery, a minimally invasive procedure. Your doctor will make small incisions to more precisely access and repair the involved tendon. This leads to less tissue injury and a faster recovery.
Occupational or physical therapy may be alternative to surgery. Physical therapists provide exercises to strengthen muscles and tendons to reduce pain and enhance range of motion.
If you are at risk of developing tendonitis, you should take the following prevention steps.
If you are an athlete,
When performing daily tasks or at work:
You are entitled to a pain-free life. We provide individualized care at Rogers Foot and Ankle Institute to help you get back on your feet. We are experts in treating the following musculoskeletal and skin diseases and conditions: