Tendons are tough pieces of tissue that connect your muscles to your bones.
What is tendinitis?
Tendinitis is inflammation of a tendon.
Tenosynovitis is similar. In tenosynovitis, the tendon inflammation also involves the protective covering around the tendon.
Tendinitis causes pain, especially when you move that tendon
It's most common in middle-aged or older people, because tendons weaken with age
It can also be caused by hard exercise or doing tasks that use the same motions over and over
Treatments include splints, hot or cold packs, and taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, for pain
What causes tendinitis?
Tendinitis probably comes from the many small injuries, tears, and general wearing out that happen as you get older. Important contributing causes include:
Overexercise or doing exercises the wrong way
Doing the same motions over and over
Certain disorders make you a little more likely to get tendinitis:
Gonorrhea Gonorrhea Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease (STD). An STD is an infection that is spread from person to person by sexual contact. Gonorrhea infects your genitals and, in women, your fallopian... read more , a sexually transmitted disease, sometimes spreads through your body and infects a tendon.
Tendinitis can also occur as a side effect of some antibiotics.
What are the symptoms of tendinitis?
Symptoms of tendinitis include:
Pain when the tendon is moved or pressed
Sometimes, swelling and warmth
Tendinitis is most likely to happen to tendons in these parts of your body:
Shoulder (rotator cuff)
The back of your heel
The side of your knee
Near your hip bone
If tendinitis lasts a long time, the tendon can weaken and you may have:
Stiffness and difficulty moving (especially if your tendinitis is in your shoulder joint)
A feeling of snapping or catching when you move the joint
How can doctors tell if I have tendinitis?
Doctors can usually tell you have tendinitis based on your symptoms and physical exam.
Sometimes they do tests, such as:
How do doctors treat tendinitis?
Treatment usually includes:
Resting the painful area, sometimes by wearing a splint or sling
Heat or cold packs
Medicine (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs [NSAIDs] such as ibuprofen) for pain
Sometimes a corticosteroid injection
Once the inflammation gets better, you’ll do exercises to help the tendon move more easily.
For severe cases of tendinitis, doctors may do surgery.
How can I prevent tendinitis?
To prevent tendinitis from coming back or lasting a long time, doctors will have you:
Make sure you're doing an exercise or activity the right way
Avoid doing the same motion over and over for a long time
Make sure the area where you work is comfortable and properly set up for what you're doing