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  • Writer's pictureDr. Maya Gonzales

Understanding Tendonitis: Causes, Treatments, and Prevention

Tendonitis, often referred to as tendinitis, is a common condition characterized by the inflammation or irritation of a tendon, which connects muscles to bones. This ailment can affect any tendon in the body and commonly occurs in the shoulders, elbows, wrists, knees, and heels. In this blog post, we'll delve into what tendonitis is, its causes, typical diagnosis timeframe, treatments offered at our clinic, and essential tips for prevention and effective management.

What is Tendonitis?

Tendonitis occurs when repetitive movements, overuse, or sudden injury strain the tendons beyond their normal capacity, leading to micro-tears and inflammation. Activities such as sports, repetitive motions at work, or improper technique during exercise can contribute to its development.

Diagnosis Timeframe:

Diagnosing tendonitis typically involves a physical examination by a healthcare professional, sometimes coupled with imaging tests when indicated like X-rays or MRI scans to rule out other possible diagnoses. The timeframe for diagnosis varies depending on the severity of symptoms, mechanism of injury, and the individual's access to medical care. In most cases, diagnosis occurs within a few weeks of experiencing symptoms.

Treatments Offered at Evergreen Spine & Sports Medicine:

Our clinic offers a range of treatments aimed at relieving pain, reducing inflammation, promoting tendon healing, and reducing the chance of recurrence. Here's an overview of the modalities we provide and their effectiveness in managing tendonitis:

  • Chiropractic Joint Manipulation: Chiropractic adjustments can help restore proper joint function and alleviate stress on surrounding tendons and muscles, promoting natural healing processes.

  • Active Release Technique (ART): ART involves targeted manual therapy to break up scar tissue and adhesions within the affected tendon, improving range of motion and reducing pain.

  • Dry Needling: Dry needling involves inserting thin needles into trigger points within muscles to release tension and promote blood flow, aiding in pain relief and tissue repair.

  • Shockwave Therapy: Shockwave therapy delivers acoustic waves to the affected area, stimulating cellular repair mechanisms and reducing inflammation, leading to improved tendon healing.

  • Assisted Stretching: Assisted stretching techniques help elongate tight muscles and improve flexibility, reducing strain on tendons and preventing further injury.

  • Corrective Exercises: Tailored exercise programs focus on strengthening muscles, improving posture, and correcting biomechanical imbalances to reduce strain on affected tendons.

  • Massage Therapy: Massage therapy can help relax tense muscles, improve circulation, and reduce inflammation, providing symptomatic relief and supporting tendon healing.

  • Rolfing: Rolfing aims to realign the body's fascia, promoting improved movement patterns and reducing strain on tendons and muscles.

  • Kinesiology Tape: Taping techniques can be used to promote proper biomechanics of the effected area and improve blood and lymphatic flow if there is active inflammation.

Duration of Treatment:

The duration of treatment varies depending on the severity of tendonitis, individual response to therapy, and adherence to recommended protocols. A typical course of treatment may range from several weeks to a few months, with regular monitoring and adjustments as needed.

Tips for Prevention and Effective Treatment:

To prevent tendonitis and maximize the effectiveness of treatment, consider the following tips:

  • Practice proper ergonomics and technique during physical activities and repetitive tasks.

  • Warm up before exercise and stretch regularly to maintain flexibility and prevent muscle imbalances.

  • Gradually increase the intensity and duration of physical activity to avoid overloading tendons.

  • Incorporate rest days into your exercise routine to allow for adequate recovery.

  • Listen to your body and avoid pushing through pain or discomfort.

  • Follow prescribed treatment plans diligently and communicate any concerns or changes in symptoms with your healthcare provider.

Tendonitis can significantly impact daily activities and quality of life, but with timely diagnosis and appropriate treatment, most individuals can experience relief and regain function. At our clinic, we offer a comprehensive approach to managing tendonitis, utilizing various modalities to address pain, inflammation, and tissue healing. By incorporating preventive measures and adhering to recommended treatment protocols, you can minimize the risk of tendonitis and optimize your recovery journey.

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