Tendons are small, strong, thick bands of connective tissue that connect the muscle to the bone. Tendinitis describes ‘inflammatory pain’ in a tendon area. A little inflammation in the beginning of an injury is expected and useful to help heal the injured area. Tendinopathy is a broad term and the symptoms include tenderness on palpation, pain when exercising or with movement. Tendinosis occurs at a later stage when the tendon shows wear, but no inflammation. And this is often due to anti-inflammatory medications, which block the regeneration of collagen, the major constituent of the tendon. Yes, inflammation is needed for healing.
Tendinitis is typically from a new injury during the early phase when the injury is causing inflammation, a sign that the body is trying to heal the tendon. Many tendon injuries we see are from workout classes, weight training, and in people who move any joint improperly that stretches a tendon and strain it. The place that a tendon, ligament, or muscle attaches to bone is called the enthesis, and if the strain (tendon or muscle injury) or sprain (ligament injury) occurs at that junction to bone, it is called an enthesopathy. And regenerative medicine is the best way I know to heal that.
My non-invasive laser and shock wave treatments are demonstrated to be effective in the long term – we go head-to-head with anti-inflammatory medications and cortisone shots which do not have a healing effect. In fact they can lead to a non-healing tendon or ligament.