What is Tendonitis?

Tendonitis is the condition marked by inflammation or irritation of a tendon. It can cause pain and tenderness around any joint, but it is most common in the shoulder, elbow, wrist, and heel. Tendonitis is often called other things, depending on what joint is affected:

  • Jumper's knee
  • Tennis elbow
  • Golfer's elbow
  • Swimmer's shoulder
  • Pitcher's shoulder

How Does it Happen?

Sometimes tendonitis can be the result of an injury, but it is usually caused by a repetitive motion, such as swinging a golf club or tennis racquet or using a computer mouse.

What are the Signs and Symptoms?

The signs of tendonitis are usually focused on the joint affected. You may experience these symptoms:

  • Tenderness
  • Various levels of pain, sometimes considered a dull ache
  • Swelling

How is it Diagnosed?

In most cases, your doctor will be able to diagnose tendonitis during a physical exam. However, you may need x-rays or other imaging tests, just to rule out other conditions that can mimic your symptoms.

How is it Treated?

Very often, tendonitis can be treated with conservative therapy. You may feel better after resting the joint or applying ice to it. You doctor may also suggest over-the-counter pain relievers or a pain management injection to ease your discomfort.

If your condition is more severe, your doctor may recommend physical therapy. This treatment will help you strengthen the muscles around the joint and increase your flexibility.

If these treatments do not provide relief, you may require surgery to repair the injured joint.

What is the Prognosis?

Often this condition will improve once the joint been treated with rest and other conservative measures. If you require surgery, you will need time to recover, based on the procedure you have.