Tendons are the structures that connect our muscles to our bones. Tendons are composed of collagen and tenocytes (tendon cells), and are capable for transmitting mechanical forces of our muscle contraction to the skeletal system, allowing joint range of motion, and help with shock absorption.
Tendons contain very few blood vessels and thus have poor circulation. Once they become inflamed or torn, it is difficult for tendons to undergo self-repair, and medical intervention is often required. Acute tendinitis typically results from sprain or improper exercise, whereas chronic tendinitis is a result of excess repetitive motions from our everyday activity.
Common forms of tendinitis include rotator cuff tendinitis that occurs in the shoulder, De Quervain’s syndrome in the wrist and hands, tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow, and plantar fasciitis. Treatment for tendinitis is determined according its stage and severity. Medication, physical therapy, and protective braces are common treatments used in the initial stage of tendinitis. For severer or chronic tendinitis, other treatment options such as shock wave therapy or therapeutic injections may be considered.