Calcific Tendinopathy / Tendonitis

Calcific tendinopathy is a condition that causes the formation of calcium deposits in a tendon, which can lead to pain and decreased range of motion. It most commonly affects the tendons of the rotator cuff in the shoulder, but can also occur in other tendons throughout the body.

Causes of Calcific Tendinopathy:

The exact cause of calcific tendinopathy is not fully understood, but it is believed to be related to repetitive stress or injury to the affected tendon. Other factors that may contribute to the development of calcific tendinopathy include:

  • Age-related wear and tear on the tendon
  • Poor blood supply to the tendon
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Genetics

Symptoms of Calcific Tendinopathy:

The symptoms of calcific tendinopathy can include:

  • Pain and tenderness in the affected area
  • Stiffness and limited range of motion
  • Weakness in the affected muscle
  • A popping or clicking sensation in the joint
  • Swelling or redness in the affected area

Diagnosis of Calcific Tendinopathy:

I can diagnose calcific tendinopathy through a physical exam and imaging tests such as X-rays, MRI or ultrasound. During a physical exam, I will check for tenderness, range of motion, and any visible swelling or deformity in the affected area. Imaging tests can confirm the diagnosis and determine the extent of the calcium deposits.

Treatment of Calcific Tendinopathy:

Treatment for calcific tendinopathy depends on the severity of the injury and the patient’s symptoms. Mild cases may be treated with rest, ice, and pain medication. More severe cases may require a combination of treatments, such as:

  • Physical therapy: exercises to help maintain range of motion and strength in the affected area
  • Shockwave therapy: high-energy sound waves to break up the calcium deposits
  • Ultrasound-guided needling: a minimally invasive procedure to remove the calcium deposits
  • Surgery: if other treatments do not provide relief, surgery may be necessary to remove the calcium deposits or repair the damaged tendon.

Recovery from Calcific Tendinopathy:

Recovery from calcific tendinopathy depends on the severity of the injury and the type of treatment received. Mild cases may resolve with rest and ice, while more severe cases may require surgery and rehabilitation. Most patients are able to manage their symptoms and return to their normal activities with appropriate treatment.

In conclusion, calcific tendinopathy is a condition that can cause pain and discomfort in a tendon due to the formation of calcium deposits. If you suspect you have calcific tendinopathy, it is important to seek medical attention promptly to receive an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment. With proper treatment and rehabilitation, most people are able to manage their symptoms and maintain their range of motion.