Does this sound familiar?
You develop pain, and it’s getting worse. You pull out your computer and search for what’s wrong. The search reveals “tendinitis.”
Looking at the treatment options, you decide to take a couple weeks off, ice twice a day, stretch as often as you can and take pain relievers when needed.
Things are going great, the pain has disappeared and you decide to get back to regular activity. You start your warm up. You begin to play or run, then uh-oh, the pain is back.
It hasn’t left. Now what do you do? Cortisone shot? Surgery?
Why did the pain return? The answer is simple. The diagnosis and treatment were wrong.
What we are finding now is that most cases of tendinitis are misdiagnosed and are actually tendinosis. While tendinitis is believed to be an inflammatory process, tendinosis is a degenerative one.
With return of activity and lack of proper recovery, we often see overuse of muscles and joints commonly used in that activity. With overuse, tendons and muscles become weak and degenerate. Once the muscles and structures are weak, adhesion will form to try to stabilize the area. This also alters joint motion and leads to further weakness and pain. If left untreated, this can lead to torn muscles, tendons and ligaments. Rest, ice and stretching do nothing to repair damage to injured soft tissue.
Treatment of tendinosis takes a different approach. Try these four steps:
Manual therapy. Adhesion is the most common result of overuse. To remove adhesion, you need therapy from someone certified to treat the condition.
Eccentric exercise. When a tendon or ligament is degenerated, rest will not fix it. It needs to be regenerated and strengthened. Eccentric exercise does this by helping improve blood flow into the origin and insertion points of muscles where degeneration is common.
Load Management. I hate the word “rest” when treating injuries, because in most cases it gives you false hope – that something is actually being fixed – when in reality it isn’t. In tendinosis cases, rest helps the damaged soft tissue recover from treatment faster and reduces the risk of more severe injury. 97% of all soft tissue (muscle, ligament, tendon) tears happen in degenerated tissue. This is tendinosis!
Get a brace. Using a brace reduces stress on the injured area and allows treatment to be more effective and can help speed up recovery time.
Recovery time depends on how long symptoms have been present and how much damage has been done to the soft tissue.
At Thrive Spine and Sport, we specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of adhesion, a primary cause of tendinosis and tendinitis. If you or someone you know has been struggling to find relief from “tendinitis” it’s time to find out what’s really wrong! You deserve real solutions to your problem. Fill out the appointment request on this page or call our office at 319-423-0925 today!
Thanks for reading!