What is tendinitis?
Tendinitis (or tendonitis) is an inflammation or irritation of a tendon. Tendinitis can be either acute or chronic in nature. Tendinitis most often is caused by repetitive, minor impact on the affected area, or from a sudden, more serious injury.
Who gets tendinitis?
Anyone can get tendinitis. However, it's more common in those who do repetitive activities. Some of these activities include:
- Tennis, golf, skiing, baseball (throwing and pitching)
Other risk factors for tendinitis include:
- Poor posture at work or home.
- Presence of certain diseases: rheumatoid arthritis, gout/pseudogout, blood or kidney diseases. These diseases can weaken muscles.
- Adults 40 years of age and older. As tendons age, they tolerate less stress, are less elastic, and tear more easily.
- Medications (rare occurrence): fluoroquinolone antibiotics (such as ciprofloxacin [Cipro®] and norfloxacin [Noroxin®]) and statins (drugs that lower cholesterol). These medicines can cause tendons to tear.
Where does tendinitis occur?
Tendinitis can occur in almost any area of the body where a tendon connects a bone to a muscle. The most common places are:
- Base of the thumb
- Achilles tendon (connects the calf muscles to the heel bone)
What causes tendinitis?
Tendinitis most often is caused by repetitive, minor impact on the affected area, or from a sudden, more serious injury.
What are the symptoms of tendinitis?
- Pain at the site of the tendon and surrounding area. Pain may be a gradual buildup or sudden and severe, especially if calcium deposits are present.
- Loss of motion in the shoulder, called adhesive capsulitis or “frozen shoulder”.