When tendons are inflamed from repetitive use or injury, it causes tendonitis. Most commonly, tendonitis occurs in the elbow, ankle, shoulder, or neck area. Those who suffer from it know how painful and debilitating it can be. We know most of you would rather ignore dull pain, hoping ibuprofen or acetaminophen staves it off. But what happens if tendonitis goes untreated? It can lead to tendinosis, which is a far worse, more painful, condition. Tendinosis means a tendon has ruptured and it can lead to further tendon degeneration and abnormal blood vessel growth.
Read further to learn ways tendonitis sufferers can effectively self-care and when they should consult a physician.
Will Tendonitis Heal On Its Own?
No, tendonitis cannot heal on its own, although it can heal naturally. To clarify, its symptoms can dissipate with intentional rest and non-use of the inflamed tendon. Low level laser therapy may hasten recovery.
Prostaglandin E2 concentrations are hormone-like substances in our bodies that impact the way our muscles contract and relax. People with tendonitis may have high levels of prostaglandins in response to their injury. Higher prostaglandin E2 concentrations may manifest as increased pressure pain.
In this randomized, placebo-controlled trial of low level laser therapy for activated Achilles tendinitis, prostaglandin E2 concentrations were significantly reduced 75, 90, and 105 minutes after active LLLT compared with concentrations before treatment. LumaCare Duo™ is a handheld Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) system that uses two adjustable arms and dual rotational emitter heads to effectively administer LLLT directly at the source of your tendonitis.
Should I Apply Ice to Tendonitis?
Ice can help reduce swelling in the area, which may alleviate pain. If possible, elevate the area that is in pain. If pain persists after a few days, consider applying heat. We recommend you consult your family physician.
Do I Need to see a Doctor for Tendonitis?
If your tendonitis pain has not subsided in a few days and you have left it untreated, you should call your doctor. He or she can recommend specialized treatment, possibly referring you to a rheumatologist or orthopedic surgeon. An examination can help rule out other causes, such as cartilage damage.
How Can I Prevent Tendonitis?
Stretching exercises may help prevent tendonitis but you should consult a specialist to ensure you select exercises that are beneficial and avoid any that might cause further harm. Also, you’ll need instruction on how to properly perform preventative exercises.
You may need to vary your exercise routine and consider adding swimming to your workouts (not recommended, however, for shoulder or elbow tendonitis). Again, consult a physician before embarking on any new exercise routine, especially while still experience pain.
Maintain a healthy weight can also help prevent tendonitis.
Contact us for information on LumaCare Duo™, the innovative therapeutic laser system to help treat tendonitis.