Author’s note: Tendonitis is an inflammation or irritation of a tendon. Chronic strain, overuse or misuse of a tendon leading to a repetitive stress injury, or a serious acute injury can lead to a weakness, tear or swelling of the tendon tissue resulting in pain and stiffness near the tendon. This is the first in a series of posts regarding tendonitis and the different parts of the body it can affect.
Shoulder tendonitis frequently affects the rotator cuff, specifically the biceps tendon. The main cause of shoulder tendonitis is gradual changes in posture that misalignment of the shoulder joint, which creates stress on the tendons by pinching them between bones. The stress leads to inflammation and can result in loss of motion and weakness.
Other common causes of shoulder tendonitis are:
- Chronic Tendonitis: occurs over time by degenerative disease or general wear and tear.
- Traumatic injury such as a fall
- Dislocation of the shoulder
- Arthritis (bone spurs place excess pressure on the bursa)
- Shoulder Instability
There are several effective physical therapy treatments for shoulder tendonitis.
- Posture: Because tendonitis often occurs because of poor posture, a licensed physical therapist can provide you with instructions for proper posture that will limit the wear and tear on your shoulder tendon.
- Behavior: Your daily routine could be placing more stress and trauma on your shoulder than you think. A physical therapist will work with you on modifying how you complete your daily activities to lessen the trauma.
- Home Exercise Program: If you’re a frequent reader of this blog, you’ve heard this term often. That’s because its importance cannot be overstated. A physical therapist will provide you with exercises to be performed on a regular basis in order to correct posture, regain strength and increase your range of motion.