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10 Things Not To Do If You Have Lower Limb Tendon Pain

Tendon pain is one of the most common things dealt with in a Physio clinic. Examples included rotator cuff pain, Achilles tendon pain and the lateral elbow or tennis elbow. Physio and researcher Jill Cook provides these tips.

Rest completely. Resting reduces the ability of the tendon to take load. Reduce your loads to the level that the tendon can tolerate then slowly increase them.

Have passive treatments. Treatments which do not address the ability of the tendon to take load are not helpful in the long run

Have injection therapies. Injections of substance into the tendon have not been shown to be effective in good clinical trials. Do not use them unless a tendon has not responded to an exercise based program.

Ignore your pain. Not all pain is necessarily bad but it is a warning. Pain that persists for a day or 2 following exercise or changes the way you move is probably doing you harm.

Stretch the tendon. This causes compressive loads in many tendon problems which is not beneficial.

Massage your tendon. This just adds more load and has potential to irritate if further

Worry about MRI or ultrasound findings. These often don’t correlate well with symptoms and disability, and do no predict whether you will recover.

Worry about rupture. If the tendon is painful it is unlikely to rupture. Most tendons that rupture are pain-free prior to this occurring.

Take short cuts with your rehabilitation. The tendon needs time (many months) to recover. There are no proven short term solutions.

Misunderstand loads. The highest loads are in running and sports. Lifting weights is not considered high tendon load and can be beneficial to recovery.


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