Tendonitis consists of inflammation and irritation in a tendon (the thick fibrous cords that attach muscle to bone). The condition causes pain and tenderness around the outside of a joint.

While tendonitis may occur in any tendons, it’s commonly found around the shoulders, elbows, wrists, knees, and heels.

Some common names for various tendonitis problems are:

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

The majority of tendonitis cases can heal successfully with rest, physical therapy, and medications to reduce pain. If severe tendinitis leads to the rupture of a tendon, you may require surgery to fully heal.

What are the symptoms of tendonitis?

Signs and symptoms of tendonitis tend to occur at the point where a tendon attaches to a bone and typically include:

  • Pain: dull ache, especially when moving the affected limb or joint
  • Tenderness
  • Mild swelling

What are the causes of tendonitis?

Tendinitis mostly stems from the repetition of a particular movement over time. Less commonly, tendinitis can be caused by a sudden injury. Most people develop tendinitis because their jobs or hobbies involve repetitive motions, which put stress on the tendons.

Improper technique when performing repetitive sports movements or job-related activities can overload the tendon — which can occur, for instance, with tennis elbow — and lead to tendinitis.

How is tendonitis treated?

Tendonitis can sometimes be treated at home with ice, rest, and over-the-counter medications. With a more severe case of tendonitis, your doctor may use the following treatments:


For tendinitis, your doctor may recommend these medications:

  • Pain relievers such as aspirin, Aleve, and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others)
  • Topical creams with anti-inflammatory medication

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP)

PRP treatment takes a sample of your own blood and spins the blood to separate out the platelets and other healing factors. Your provider injects the blood into the area of chronic tendon irritation.

Steroid Injection

A steroid injection is a minimally invasive procedure that can temporarily relieve pain caused by an inflamed joint.  Your provider injects a corticosteroid medication around a tendon to relieve tendinitis. Injections of cortisone reduce inflammation and can help ease the pain. Corticosteroids are not recommended for tendinitis lasting over three months (chronic tendinitis), as repeated injections may weaken a tendon and increase your risk of rupturing the tendon. There are treatments available, non-surgical, and not steroid injection, that are regenerative and solutions to keep you away from surgery. schedule an appointment and ask our providers how we can help.

Physical therapy

Physical therapists give you a specific set of exercises designed to stretch and strengthen the affected muscle-tendon unit.

Surgical and other procedures

In situations where physical therapy hasn’t resolved symptoms, your doctor might suggest:

Our mission is to help patients to return to work, improve their quality of life, reduce dependence on medication and healthcare providers, and avoid persistent injuries.

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