What is Tendinitis?
Tendons are identified as the flexible, thick, and fibrous cord of tissue that connects a muscle to a bone. If a tendon becomes inflamed or irritated, tendinitis can occur and lead to significant pain and tenderness around the affected area. Though it can affect any tendon, tendinitis is most prevalent in the wrists, elbows, heels, knees, and shoulders. In some instances, tendinitis can be conservatively treated with rest, but there are cases in which the tendon may rupture and require more invasive treatment. Experienced orthopedic physician Dr. Christopher Williams and our team at Interventional Orthopedics of Atlanta offer a number of treatment options for individuals suffering from tendinitis. Learn more about your treatment options by contacting our Atlanta, GA facility to schedule your initial consultation with Dr. Williams.
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What are common Tendinitis Symptoms?
The symptoms of tendinitis typically develop at the area where the tendon connects to the bone. The most common symptoms may include inflammation and swelling, pain with movement of the limb, and tenderness. When not cared for properly, tendinitis can lead to the rupture of the tendon, which can cause degenerative changes in the tendon and the growth of abnormal blood vessels. If you are experiencing symptoms that you believe are due to tendinitis, it is important to seek medical attention in order to receive a proper diagnosis before the condition progresses.
What are the risk factors for tendinitis?
Tendinitis, the inflammation of tendons, can result from various factors, and understanding its risk factors is crucial for prevention. Some of the primary risk factors for tendinitis include:
- Age: Tendinitis is more common as people age, as tendons become less flexible and resilient.
- Overuse: Repetitive motions, especially in sports or certain occupations, can strain tendons.
- Sports Activities: Participating in sports that involve repetitive movements or high-impact activities can increase the risk.
- Poor Technique: Incorrect technique during physical activities can place additional stress on tendons.
- Injury: Direct trauma or injury to a tendon can trigger tendinitis.
- Medical Conditions: Conditions like diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and certain infections can contribute.
- Medications: Some medications can increase vulnerability to tendinitis.
- Obesity: Excess body weight can place more strain on tendons.
- Environmental Factors: Working in conditions that involve vibrations or extreme temperatures can be a risk factor.
What Causes Tendinitis?
While it is possible for tendinitis to be the result of an injury or trauma, it is typically caused by repetitive movement over time. There are several risk factors that can make a person more likely to develop tendinitis, such as their age and occupation. As we get older, our tendons lose their flexibility and increase the risk of injury. Individuals whose jobs include strenuous lifting and repetitive motions can also be more susceptible to developing tendinitis. Additionally, tendinitis is common in individuals who regularly play sports or are professional athletes.
Who Is Tendinitis Diagnosed?
When it comes to diagnosing tendinitis, the process involves a multifaceted approach centered on clinical assessment and patient history. Our staff in Atlanta, GA will likely begin by evaluating symptoms such as pain, inflammation, and limited joint movement. They will then inquire about the onset, location, and aggravating activities. Imaging techniques like ultrasound or MRI may reveal structural changes and inflammation. The culmination of these elements aids in accurate tendinitis diagnosis, enabling Dr. Christopher Williams and his team to tailor appropriate treatment strategies for pain relief and functional recovery.
What are Treatment Options for tendinitis?
Tendinitis is typically diagnosed with a simple physical exam and an evaluation of your medical history, but an x-ray may be taken in order to rule out any other possible causes for your pain and discomfort. When treating tendinitis, the main goal is to alleviate pain and inflammation. In order to do so, anti-inflammatory medications may be initially prescribed, as well as physical therapy. If your symptoms do not improve with medication or therapy, corticosteroid injections or platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy can then be suggested. Other methods of treatment could include dry needling, ultrasound treatment, and surgery in severe cases.
Based on your current symptoms and past medical history, Dr. Williams will develop a treatment plan that will allow for the best possible results and a long-term outcome.
What are the symptoms of tendinitis?
For most people, tendinitis symptoms include pain, stiffness, and swelling in the area, which can become red-colored and hot. You may also feel a "grinding" sensation as you flex.
What are the causes of tendinitis?
The main causes of tendinitis are repetitive movements (like typing) or a sudden, traumatic injury, such as from sports or a fall. Work that includes repetitive motions and sports are the main culprits.
Are there risk factors for tendinitis?
As we age, our tendons lose their resiliency and elasticity, so anyone over 40 has a higher chance of experiencing tendinitis. If your job, hobby, or sports activities include repetitive motions, you could likely experience tendinitis.
How can I help prevent tendinitis?
You can make sure to warm up every time before sports, exercise, or strenuous activities. Also, avoiding repetitive motions is the best way to prevent tendinitis. If you begin to feel any type of tendon pain, stop the activity and let your body rest.
What happens if tendinitis is left untreated?
If left untreated, tendinitis can cause permanent damage to the tendon, leading to increased pain and decreased mobility. Patients should seek medical care as soon as possible to prevent the condition from worsening. Dr. Williams can evaluate your condition and create a treatment plan to help alleviate your pain while promoting healing.
Can tendinitis heal on its own?
While some mild cases of tendinitis can heal without treatment, it is best to seek medical care in order to prevent further damage. Our trained Atlanta, GA team can provide a comprehensive evaluation and recommend the best course of action. No one should attempt to self-diagnose or treat any type of tendon injury on their own.
Are you looking for relief from joint inflammation?
Your tendons play a very important role in providing mobility and stability to your muscles and joints. When a tendon is compromised, it can greatly affect your everyday life. Thankfully, Dr. Williams and our team at Interventional Orthopedics of Atlanta offer a variety of treatment options for patients suffering from tendinitis to allow for optimal pain relief and reduce inflammation. Contact our state-of-the-art Atlanta, GA facility to learn more and to schedule an initial consultation.