Tendinopathy Treatment Available in Lafayette, LA
A tendon is a strong, fibrous band of collagen-based tissue that connects a muscle to a bone. “Tendinopathy” is a general term used to describe any problem involving a tendon, such as degeneration, weakness, or tearing. Most of these problems result from stress or overuse. One example is a runner’s strained hamstring tendon that does not heal properly and causes chronic pain.
While tendinopathy can affect any tendon, the condition most frequently affects the rotator cuff tendons in the shoulder, the patellar (kneecap) tendon, the hamstring tendons in the back of the thighs, and the Achilles tendon, which connects the calf muscle to the heel bone.
What Are the Symptoms of Tendinopathy?
In addition to pain in and around the affected tendon, tendinopathy may cause:
- Pain that worsens when the tendon is used
- Pain and stiffness that worsen with rest and improve with activity
- Tenderness, redness, warmth, and swelling around the tendon
- A “crunching” sensation when the tendon moves
How Is Tendinopathy Treated?
Recent research suggests that tendinopathy may cause little to no inflammation. Therefore, traditional treatments that focus on reducing inflammation, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and corticosteroid injections may be ineffective for these injuries. With that said, tendinopathy can usually be fully rehabilitated, although the healing process can take up to several months to complete. In the meantime, many patients benefit from:
- Resting the painful area of the body and avoiding activities that worsen the pain
- Applying ice packs for 20 minutes at a time as needed
- Performing gentle stretches and range-of-motion exercises to prevent stiffness
An orthopedic specialist can provide suggestions to fast-track the healing process, such as a physical therapy program or PRP (platelet-rich plasma injection treatment). To address severe tendinopathy that doesn’t respond to conservative treatment, a physician may suggest tendon repair surgery.
A Board-Certified Orthopedic Surgeon Practicing in Lafayette
Peter D. Vizzi, MD, is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist who practices in Lafayette, Louisiana. Dr. Vizzi provides a full range of treatment options for tendinopathy, and he has helped many patients find much-needed relief from painful tendon injuries. To learn more or schedule a consultation with Dr. Vizzi, contact his office today.