zig
0

Notifications

  • You're all caught up!

What Are the Treatments for a Torn Tendon?

by
author image Nancy Clarke
Nancy Clarke began writing in 1988 after achieving her Bachelor of Arts in English and has edited books on medicine, diet, senior care and other health topics. Her related affiliations include work for the American Medical Association and Oregon Health Plan.
What Are the Treatments for a Torn Tendon?
A woman in a rehabilitation session. Photo Credit Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images

Overview

Because the tendons of the human body connect active muscle tissue to passive bone, they act as shock absorbers that sometimes tear from too much wear. Either a pulled muscle or a tendon strain itself can cause tendon fibers to tear. Among the areas vulnerable to tendon problems are the rotator cuff of the shoulder and the Achilles tendon of the foot. The treatments for a torn tendon depend on individual pain thresholds and tissue repair rates, as well as the extent of the damage.

Rest and Protection

A torn tendon will hurt when it moves or when weight or force is placed on it. The Mayo Clinic reports a variety of immobilization treatments that reduce tendon strain and offer pain relief. Resting to the degree that creates the least pain should come first, whether it is full bed rest, a suspension of athletic workouts or restriction of daily activities.

Inflammation around a tissue tear may increase when blood flow increases during movement. Supporting the pulled muscle and tendon area with a compression bandage, sling, splint, crutches, cane or another aid will cut down on the swelling and make moving and getting around easier.

You Might Also Like

Pain Relief

As soon as symptoms of a tendon strain develop, first aid pain relief should accompany rest treatment. Reusable chilled gel packs make convenient cold compresses for pulled muscles and tendons in the foot, leg, back, rib cage, shoulders, arms and neck.

The University of Buffalo Sports Medicine group suggests at least three ice treatments of up to 30 minutes per day while swelling is present. This can be used to supplement drug therapy for a torn tendon because short-term medications such as ibuprofen, aspirin and naproxen may need to be curtailed before the pain fully disappears.

Physical Therapy

Treatments to mend a torn tendon include restoring the tissue’s strength, flexibility and endurance. Physical therapy should start with gentle stretches of the pulled muscle and tendon area, followed by a gradual re-establishment of the patient’s usual exercise routine. The Mayo Clinic notes that a doctor or physical therapist can set safety boundaries and fitness goals for individual patients.

Surgical Treatment

Tendon strains that result in complete separation of muscle and joint or bone may need surgical operations to repair the tissue. The University of Buffalo Sports Medicine group reports that arthroscopic surgery can address some tissue displacement or ruptures. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, however, extensive damage that involves bone spurs, joint fractures or other extenuating circumstances may require open surgery.

Related Searches

LiveStrong Calorie Tracker
THE LIVESTRONG.COM MyPlate Nutrition, Workouts & Tips
GOAL
  • Gain 2 pounds per week
  • Gain 1.5 pounds per week
  • Gain 1 pound per week
  • Gain 0.5 pound per week
  • Maintain my current weight
  • Lose 0.5 pound per week
  • Lose 1 pound per week
  • Lose 1.5 pounds per week
  • Lose 2 pounds per week
GENDER
  • Female
  • Male
lbs.
ft. in.

References

Demand Media