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What Triggers Shoulder Tendonitis?

Roll it forward.

Your shoulder is an important joint in your body that can be under a lot of stress and strain. Shoulder tendonitis is an intense pain in your shoulder caused by inflammation of the tendons that are part of that joint. Injuries can cause it, but the over-repetition of a certain motion most commonly causes it.


At Crescent City Orthopedics in Metairie, Louisiana, our team of highly skilled Sports Medicine Specialists and Orthopedic Surgeons are here to provide you with top-notch care for all your joints. From helping you recover from sports injuries to managing conditions such as arthritis, our team offers the skilled medical care you need to get you back to moving freely again.

What is tendonitis?

Your bones form the basic structure of your body, and the points in your body where bones meet are called joints. Your knees, hands, feet, hips, spine, and shoulders are all joints that flex, allowing you to move.  Tendons connect your muscles to your bones at these joints. 


Tendonitis is inflammation of a tendon, which can cause a decreased range of motion and significant pain. Although you can have tendonitis in any of the tendons in your body, it’s commonly found in your wrists, elbows, hips, and shoulders. 

What are the symptoms of tendonitis?

Pain at the site of the inflamed tendon is the main symptom of tendonitis. The pain may gradually increase over time or can be intense pain that comes on suddenly. Usually, the pain will worsen with movement of the affected shoulder.


You may also feel a strange grating sensation in the affected tendon when you are moving it. Some swelling or redness in the location is common, or possibly a lump may develop in the tendon. Also, you may experience a decreased range of motion in your affected shoulder, a condition that is sometimes referred to as “frozen shoulder.”

What triggers shoulder tendonitis?

Shoulder tendonitis can be caused by a traumatic injury that causes damage to the band of tissues of one of the four rotator cuff tendons or the two bicep tendons in your shoulder. A movement outside your normal range of motion can damage these tissues, causing pain and the inability to move.


More typically, shoulder tendonitis is caused by repetitive motions that cause the tendon to become inflamed from overuse. Work activities or motions during sports that use the shoulder cause this, such as:



There are several risk factors that can contribute to the development of tendonitis. These include bad posture, not adequately warming up or stretching the affected area, and overuse when your body isn’t accustomed to a particular motion. Age is also a risk factor, as tendons lose some of their elasticity as you age, and are more likely to be injured. 


Tendonitis can also be a complication of other conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and thyroid disorders. It can also be caused by a joint that is not properly aligned, causing stress on the joints and the tissues that surround it. 

What treatments are available?

Our Sports Medicine Specialists and Orthopedic surgeons at Crescent City Orthopedics carefully examine you and use imaging technology such as MRI, CT scans, and x-rays to accurately diagnose your shoulder condition. They develop a treatment plan that will allow you to heal and recover from your injury, and to strengthen your shoulder to allow you to return to normal activities.


Some of the shoulder tendonitis treatments your doctor may recommend include medications to reduce inflammation and pain, rest to allow your tissues to heal, and physical therapy to strengthen and support your muscles. Your doctor may recommend surgery if some of these more conservative treatments don’t work. 

Shoulder tendonitis can be caused by a traumatic injury but is more commonly a result of overuse, causing the tendon to become inflamed. It can be a painful condition, but there are many treatment options available that allow you to heal and return to normal activities.

To set up an appointment with the skilled team at Crescent City Orthopedics, call our office or use our online booking tool.

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