Tendon Rupture

Tendon ruptures are extremely painful injuries that affect the tissue that keeps your muscles connected to your bones. Thankfully, as painful as they can be, with professional help, they can be treated or even prevented in the first place.

What Is a Tendon Rupture?

Everyone has tendons, which are tissue that keeps muscles and bones connected to each other. The tissue is typically relatively dense and inelastic and is often referred to as connective tissue. Under normal circumstances, tendons will operate to allow muscles to move bones accordingly. Unfortunately, like any other part of your body, tendons can get injured.

A tendon rupture occurs when an injury makes the tendon snap or rupture. Often, this occurs due to direct trauma to the tendon that causes it to twist or completely break and disconnect from the muscle or bone.

Tendon ruptures are usually relatively easy to diagnose, and the most common sign is extreme pain. While a tendon rupture can occur at any tendon location, they are most common in four locations: your biceps, rotator cuff, Achilles, and quadriceps.

What Makes Someone More Likely to Have a Tendon Rupture?

Tendon ruptures do not occur spontaneously or for no reason; they typically happen only with an injury or trauma. However, some circumstances do make someone more likely to have a tendon rupture. People who use muscles the same way repeatedly due to their job or another activity are at higher risk of tendon injury.

Having certain conditions also makes someone more likely to suffer a tendon rupture. Diseases like gout increase your risk, and those with type O negative blood are also more likely to rupture a tendon. In some cases, having steroids injected into a tendon for treatment of another illness or injury can cause a tendon to rupture as well.

How Can a Tendon Rupture Be Prevented?

Of course, some accidents and injuries cannot be avoided, but there are several steps that you can take to prevent the possibility of an injury when engaged in certain activities. Here are a few things that you can do to protect the health of your tendons:

Wear appropriate protective gear
While protective gear cannot prevent all injuries, adding extra support and protection is one easy way to reduce your risk of a tendon injury. Always consult with a medical professional to determine what sort of gear you should be wearing for specific activities.

Stretching before exercise can help prepare your muscles and tendons for a workout. Stretching also helps to improve your flexibility. With greater flexibility, your tendons will be better able to absorb potentially damaging impacts.

Gradually increase exercise
A common cause of injury with exercise occurs when you add more strain or weight to an exercise than your body is ready for. When this happens, your tendons may not be able to take the added stress, resulting in a rupture. To reduce the odds of this occurring, gradually increase the amount of weight you use or the time you exercise. Doing so will allow your body to adapt to the additional strain.

What Makes Someone More Likely to Have a Tendon Rupture?

With a suspected ruptured tendon, it is vitally important that you seek professional medical assistance from doctors as soon as possible. However, before you see your doctor, you can follow the standard RICE method. RICE is an acronym for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. When you have a tendon injury, you want to rest and ice the affected area to reduce pain and swelling. Compressing the injured area with a wrapped elastic bandage and then elevating the tendon at or above the level of your heart will help to further reduce any swelling.

Once you visit your doctor, the specific course of treatment will depend on the severity of the rupture and the area of the tear. In many cases, physical therapy and medication can be used to help you regain limb function and control the pain. By taking these measures and wearing a brace for the affected area, you may be able to recover.

Unfortunately, in some cases, surgery may be required to reattach the tendon to the impacted bone or muscle. As mentioned, it is vitally important that you consult professionals as soon as you suspect a tendon rupture. This can help ensure that you get the appropriate and most minimally invasive treatment possible.

If you live in Massachusetts or New Hampshire, consider Mobility Bone & Joint Institute. Our expert multistate practice has years of experience in dealing with a wide array of injuries, including tendon ruptures. Our team can help you find the best course of treatment or rehabilitation options for your tendon rupture and get you back to your regular activities pain-free.

Call (978) 794-1946 or click here to schedule an appointment at our Andover, MA office.

Call (603) 898-2244 or click here to schedule an appointment at our Salem, NH office.

Book Online

Ask Us a Question

Visit Our Patient Portal