man holding wrist in pain

What Happens if Tendonitis Goes Untreated?

Managing your tendonitis can be frustrating — one day, your joints are just mildly uncomfortable, and the next, the pain is slightly worse. You may be tempted to brush this phenomenon off as the healing process. However, it’s important to note that tendonitis will not heal without the proper treatment. If you fail to treat your tendonitis, you could develop a more severe condition that limits your mobility and requires surgery to recover. Keep reading to find out how leaving your tendonitis untreated can lead to more issues.

What Is Tendonitis, Exactly?

Tendons are the thick, fibrous cords in your body that connect muscle to bone. When these tendons become irritated and inflamed due to repetitive activity or injury, tendonitis develops. This condition can cause pain and tenderness in the affected area. Tendonitis most commonly occurs in the shoulders, elbows, and wrists, but it can develop in any tendon.

Will Tendonitis Heal on Its Own?

People suffering from tendonitis must realize that this condition will not heal on its own. Treatment requires intentional rest and non-use of the tendon. The good news is that the tendon will heal naturally, meaning invasive procedures are unnecessary. Physical therapy and rest could be enough to heal the affected area.

Why You Shouldn’t Leave Tendonitis Untreated

If you fail to seek proper treatment for your tendonitis, you could develop chronic tendonitis from a buildup of scar tissue in the injured area. The stiff tendons could make it difficult and painful to perform natural movements, such as lifting your hand to eat or brush your teeth. Before you know it, your inflamed tendons will be controlling your life.

Other reasons to treat your tendonitis include:

  • Avoiding a Tendon Rupture: A tendon rupture is a complete tear of the tendon and results in sharp pain, joint weakness and immobility, and swelling. When the tear occurs, you may hear a popping or snapping sound.
  • Preventing Tendinosis: Tendinosis is a degenerative condition that occurs when tendonitis is left untreated. It results in micro-tears and abnormal blood vessel growth in the affected tendon. Tendinosis is a painful condition that will restrict your movement and may cause a visible and tender lump. 

A tendon rupture and tendinosis both require surgery to relieve the pain in your tendon. Instead of suffering from the crippling pain of these conditions and undergoing invasive surgery, it’s best to seek help from experienced hand and wrist specialists for your tendonitis while it’s still in the early stages.

Treatment Options for Tendonitis

Most of the time, nonsurgical methods are enough to treat a tendonitis injury. Physical therapy can help restore your function and mobility while minimizing the pain associated with tendonitis. Your therapist will guide you through various exercises to improve the affected area’s muscle strength, flexibility, and coordination.

Get Relief From Your Tendonitis Today

If you’re dealing with tendonitis or wrist, elbow, and shoulder pain, Philadelphia Hand to Shoulder Center can help. As the best orthopedic doctors in Bucks County, PA, we have extensive experience designing custom treatment plans that relieve patients’ pain and help them get back to their active lifestyles. Contact us today to schedule a consultation appointment and feel better about your future!

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