Interesting Tendon Information

If you’ve ever injured a tendon then some of this will relate to you!

Tendons connect muscle to bone and can become painful.  Dysfunction occurs when the tendon becomes inflamed, weakened or ruptured. Pain is the indicator that something is wrong. The most common tendons I treat in clinic include the Achilles Tendon (back of the ankle), the Rotator Cuff Tendons (shoulder), the Patella Tendon (front of knee).

Treatment options

Conservative approach initially (non surgical) dependent on how advanced the problem is. If the tendon is completely ruptured surgery might be the best place to start.

Initial stages (first 5-7 days) PRICE (Pressure, Rest, Ice, Elevation).

Your GP might prescribe a course of anti-inflammatory medication.

Active rest i.e doing enough to keep fit but not aggravating the tendon (again your Physio will be helpful here with suggestions/plans and protocols).

Specific rehabilitation exercises will build up tendon strength and can be prescribed by your Chartered Physiotherapist.

Manual therapy occasionally to stiff/restricted surrounding tissue such as the calf in the case of the Achilles Tendon.

With physiotherapy guidance, these issues should resolve completely within 3-6 months if managed effectively.

Surgery is rarely indicated but if no improvement approx 4 months through your rehabilitation program, an orthopaedic consultant opinion is appropriate.






Rehabilitation Exercises

  • Tendons are unique and require specific exercises to return to normal function.
  • These exercises encourage healing and the tendon will require adequate rest periods to take full effect (e.g. up to 48 hours between rehab exercises to take full effect).
  • Exercising too frequently will not allow for adequate recovery time, which will hinder the rehabilitation process and delay full return to sport/activity.
  • You may also be prescribed other exercises (hamstring stretches, core stability exercises etc) to correct underlying issues that may be a causative factor in your tendon problem.
  • Your daily activities should be modified depending on what stage of rehabilitation you’re at. Your physiotherapist will advise you of what you can continue and what you should avoid, to optimise your recovery.


Orla Crosse MISCP