Tendinitis and Trigger Point Therapy

extensor-digitorum-trp-muscleLast week an art teacher came into my office with tendinitis (tendonitis), seeking relief for pain in her hand. She had just cancelled surgery, scheduled for that same day, because a friend convinced her to try acupuncture first. The injury to her hand had hampered her abilities to work and impacted the quality of her sleep. She had received a cortisone shot in February that helped temporarily, but its effects had worn off and she was again in pain. Her orthopedist then recommended and scheduled surgery.

Inflamed tendons are often caused by constricted muscles. Imagine the muscle as a rubber band, and a tendon as an attached string.  If you tie a knot in the rubber band, you effectively shorten it, causing the attached string to pull. This is what often happens in tendonitis. The muscle is shortened due to injury or repetitive stress, and the tendon, attached one side to the muscle and the other side to bone, gets pulled too tight, becomes stressed and inflamed.

I proceeded to trigger point the muscles that were involved, releasing them from their chronic constriction and allowing them to regain their elasticity and strength. Immediately after the treatment, her hand felt better and by the next day, she was back in business. One treatment only, and surgery was avoided. Remember, surgery is a last option, not a first. Acupuncture can solve many problems, so be aware and proactive.