What Your Highett Physio Wants You To Know About Your Tendon!!
Introducing our new Physio and ‘ Tendinopathy Terminator ‘ Ally!
Have you ever had tendon pain, tendinopathy or tendinitis? These can occur in many tendons around the body including the elbow (golfers or tennis elbow), achilles, knee, hip, shoulder and thumb. They can often be very painful and disabling, so there are a few things your physio wants you to know as you embark on your tendon rehab.
Why do you have tendon pain?
The main factor that causes tendon pain is a sudden change in certain activities. Either those that require stored energy (walking, running, jumping), and loads that compress the tendon. Nailing this with your physio is the best way to work out how to address your tendon pain. Modifying load is important in settling tendon pain. This often involves reducing tendon load that involves energy storage and compression.
How do you treat tendon pain?
Exercise is the most effective evidence based treatment for tendon pain. Tendons need to be loaded progressively so that they can develop greater tolerance to the loads that you need. Exercise needs to be individualised and a progressive increase in load to enable restoration of function whilst respecting pain.
Unfortunately, tendons rarely improve long term with only hands on physio treatments such as massage, therapeutic ultrasound, injections, shock-wave therapy and dry needling. Exercise is often the vital ingredient and these treatments are complimentary. Multiple steroid injections in particular should be avoided, as this is often associated with a poorer outcome.
How long will it take for my tendon to heal?
Tendons respond very slowly, they have limited blood supply and just like any form of exercise it takes time for the body to adapt and respond. You need to have patience, ensure that exercise is correct and progressed appropriately, and try and resist the common temptation to accept ‘short cuts’ like injections and surgery. There are often no shortcuts.
Check out some of our past articles on tendon healing
Should I rest the injured tendon?
Tendons do not improve with rest – Like a lot of injuries, rest is a bandaid! The pain settles but often the tendon is painful again when you return to activity. Rest does nothing to increase the tolerance of the tendon to load.
The fact is, force is the language of cells. In order to communicate the message to start the repairing and healing process in the tendon, the message has to be relayed via the application of forces.
What type of forces? And for how long? Will that change overtime?
That’s what we’re here for – to guide you through the healing journey from start to finish.
During your initial consult we will go through each of these questions in detail so your left crystal-clear as to what needs to happen and by when for you to realise a full recovery.
Will anti-inflammatories help?
A tendon when injured is not considered to be a classic inflammatory response. Anti inflammatories may help if you have very high pain levels but it is unclear what effect they have on the actual cells and pathology. Pain is often a great feedback system we as physiotherapists use to prescribe appropriate exercise.
Therefore, while there is little-no evidence that anti-inflammatories are overly helpful in the long term in tendon rehab, using them as a short-term fall back may be practical in highly acute cases but shouldn’t be relied upon for anymore than the first 48 hours.
Do I need an x-ray, MRI or other scan?
Short answer, No! Pain is not equal to what we see on the results. Therefore, imaging is a waste of money and services. We focus on reducing pain and improving function rather than changing what we see on a microscopic level.
How do I know the load/ exercise is right for my pain?
Often a big factor we use in prescribing tendon exercises is your pain 24 hours following the increase in load, activity or new exercise. We do expect an acceptable amount of pain at the time, however if this pain is less than a 2-3/10 the next day we know we have got it just right.
How a physiotherapist in Highett can help
If you’re starting to feel a niggle in a tendon or are tired of having tendon pain recur and are struggling to reach your goals, a visit to a physiotherapist in Highett may be in order.
Our experienced physiotherapists can provide physiotherapy for tendon injuries new and old.
Using our unique AUS system, we’ll zero in on the exact cause of your tendon pain. This allows us to prescribe a personalised and individualised treatment plan that includes a wide range of exercises and routines that can:
- Build up load in your tendon
- Restore your normal activities
- Encourage and facilitate recovery and reduce pain
In addition to prescribing exercises, we may also provide unique solutions for cases where tendon pain is the result of poor biomechanics. We may attempt to adjust your posture, exercise performance or provide tools and suggestions to reduce the load on your tendon in the future.
Say goodbye to tendon pain forever!
Call our Highett physio team today!
We here at Physio AUS are committed to helping you live the most active lifestyle you can, fee of pain and mobility problems.
In addition to tendon specific pains, our experienced physiotherapists in Highett can also look after a range of other musculoskeletal problems including:
- Elbow and arm pain
- Hand and wrist problems
- Back issues
- Hip pain
- Ankle problems
- Knee and leg issues
- Shoulder pain
- Neck pain and Headaches
We help empower you to enjoy a fuller range of motion and to live a more pain-free life.
Has your doctor recommended physiotherapy to target tendon pain?
Our doors are open to all who suffer from tendon pain. Give our experienced physiotherapists in Highett a call today on (03) 9525 6077, or click here to book online.
About The Author:
Alexandrea Horsley or ‘Ally’ as she goes by, as our latest addition to the Highett Clinic.
Ally quickly won over our clients is loved by all.
She has a keen interest in sporting injuries and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Her lovely demeanour and high skill level has added a whole new dimension to our Highett clinic.
Ally has taken responsibility for running our group physiotherapy and pilates classes which have been a hit!
Classes run Tues-Sat with 2 class times on Tues, Weds and Thurs.