By: Coco Ang, PT
Tendons are tissues that connect the muscle to the bone. It is through the work of the tendons that muscles act on the bone to allow joints to move. Tendonitis occurs when either acute injury that doesn’t resolve properly , repetitive strain or muscle imbalance result in inflammation leading to pain and soreness.
The symptoms of tendonitis include:
- Pain or discomfort as the affected area moves
- Dull ache after prolonged activity or late in the day.
- Warmth over the tendon
- Potentially some visible signs of swelling – although not all cases will have visual evidence of this.
- Acute cases of tendonitis may cause pain so intense that it does not allow much movement.
It is important that those who suffer from tendonitis seek out medical attention, so It is imperative to determine the underlying cause of the tendonitis, as this will guide the treatment. Treatment may include taking away the aggravating or repetitive factor, strengthening, taping, acupuncture and if necessary bracing. Following the PrICE protocol can help.
The Pr.I.C.E protocol indicates the following steps to treat tendonitis:
- Protective movements—moving within minimally painful range that doesn’t aggravate symptoms or cause any pain.
- Icing the area to help with soreness because of tendonitis.
- Compressing the muscles to limit further swelling.
- Elevating the muscles to help drain the swelling.
In order to prevent an onset of tendonitis, it is suggested that the following precautions be taken:
- Warm up before engaging in physical activity to allow active blood flow through the muscles and to prepare for the load put on the muscle.
- Exercise proper posture and core strength training which allow muscles to take on heavy loads.
- Cool down by steadily decreasing the intensity of physical exertion as opposed to stopping abruptly.
- Stretch or roll the muscles after they have been worked.
Sports & Exercise Medicine Institute clinics are greater Toronto area based sports medicine, physiotherapy and massage therapy clinics that offer a wide range of services such as sports medicine physicians, massage therapists and active release techniques, among others.