The goals of tendinitis treatment are to relieve your pain and reduce inflammation. Often, taking care of tendinitis on your own — including rest, ice and over-the-counter pain relievers — may be all the treatment that you need.
For tendinitis, your doctor may recommend these medications:
- Corticosteroids. Sometimes your doctor may inject a corticosteroid medication around a tendon to relieve tendinitis. Injections of cortisone reduce inflammation and can help ease pain. However, repeated injections may weaken a tendon, increasing your risk of rupturing the tendon.
- Pain relievers. Taking aspirin, naproxen (Aleve) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others) may relieve discomfort associated with tendinitis. Topical creams with anti-inflammatory medication — popular in Europe and becoming increasingly available in the United States — may also be effective in relieving pain without the potential side effects of taking anti-inflammatory medications by mouth.
You might benefit from a program of specific exercise designed to stretch and strengthen the affected muscle-tendon unit. For instance, eccentric strengthening — which emphasizes contraction of a muscle while it's lengthening — has been shown to be effective in treating chronic tendon inflammation.
Depending on the severity of your tendon injury, surgical repair may be needed.
Nov. 08, 2011
- Questions and answers about bursitis and tendinitis. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Bursitis/default.asp. Accessed Sept. 22, 2011.
- Schmidt MJ, et al. Tendinopathy and bursitis. In: Marx JA, et al. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/linkTo?type=bookPage&isbn=978-0-323-05472-0&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05472-0..00115-8. Accessed Sept. 22, 2011.
- Colburn KK. Bursitis, tendinitis, myofascial pain, and fibromyalgia. In: Bope ET, et al. Conn's Current Therapy. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4377-0986-5..C2009-0-38984-9--TOP&isbn=978-1-4377-0986-5&about=true&uniqId=236797353-5. Accessed Sept. 26, 2011.
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- Khan K, et al. Overview of the management of overuse (chronic) tendinopathy. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Sept. 26, 2011.
- Laskowski ER (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Sept. 28, 2011.