6 doctors weighed in:
My wife has been diagnosed with tendonitis in her shoulder. What can help her arm heal. Is it wise to try and exercise the arm while it hurts?
6 doctors weighed in

Dr. Bruce Rothschild
Internal Medicine - Rheumatology
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Ultrasound
Ultrasound can help.
If she does no heavy lifting, injection of the tendon sheath with corticosteroids may cure.

In brief: Ultrasound
Ultrasound can help.
If she does no heavy lifting, injection of the tendon sheath with corticosteroids may cure.
Dr. Bruce Rothschild
Dr. Bruce Rothschild
Thank
Dr. Michele Arnold
Physical & Rehabilitation Medicine
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Therapy
Therapy, not 'exercise' would be better. I'm assuming this is biceps (bicipital) tendinitis or rotator cuff tendinitis.
In either case, home exercises can make the condition worse if not done with proper form. I'd recommend relative rest (stop activities that flare her up) and physical therapy.

In brief: Therapy
Therapy, not 'exercise' would be better. I'm assuming this is biceps (bicipital) tendinitis or rotator cuff tendinitis.
In either case, home exercises can make the condition worse if not done with proper form. I'd recommend relative rest (stop activities that flare her up) and physical therapy.
Dr. Michele Arnold
Dr. Michele Arnold
Thank
Dr. Laurence Badgley
General Practice
In brief: Injection
Shoulder tendonitis dramatically responds to single local anesthetic/corticosteroid injection.
Caveat: injection must be placed directly into offending tendon & is function of doc's anatomy understanding & motor skills. Osteopaths and physiatrists with a few gray hairs are usually experts. Should have immediate, but transient, relief from anesthetic. Steroid has delayed response of 1-2 weeks.

In brief: Injection
Shoulder tendonitis dramatically responds to single local anesthetic/corticosteroid injection.
Caveat: injection must be placed directly into offending tendon & is function of doc's anatomy understanding & motor skills. Osteopaths and physiatrists with a few gray hairs are usually experts. Should have immediate, but transient, relief from anesthetic. Steroid has delayed response of 1-2 weeks.
Dr. Laurence Badgley
Dr. Laurence Badgley
Thank
2 comments
Dr. Ronald Krauser
Not true. The injection is in the tendon sheath which is the site of the inflammation, not the tendon itself.
Dr. Laurence Badgley
Dr. Krauser makes an important distinction.  If the problem is a "tendonitis", which is an acute inflammation of the tendon sheath, then injection of corticosteroid into the tendon sheath is theoretically advised.  I would guess that placing the injectate into the tendon sheath, although theoretically advisable, is an iffy affair as relates to the biceps tendon, which must be at least 2. 5 cm subcutaneous; with a toleration of a millimeter or two between the tendon and the tendon sheath.  I am not aware that real time ultrasound guidance can help to navigate these minute tolerances, nor that ultrasound guidance has even been commonly introduced for such injections.  I believe that most injectionists perform this procedure blindly, and I doubt that blind injection into the biceps tendon sheath is either precise or dependable.  Perhaps Dr. Krauser, a Rheumatologist, can enlighten us about these fine distinctions.  Injection around the tendon sheath would be expected to deposit the corticosteroid into a location where it would likely be equally efficacious.  The bigger question to be asked about the question posed by the patient is whether she indeed has an inflammatory tendonitis or a chronic tendonosis, which is non-inflammatory.  The treatment of tendonosis, a degenerative tendon disorder absent inflammation, is different from the treatment of tendinitis, a more acute problem.  As we always must do, as doctors at Healthtap.com, is to provide answers based upon information provided by patient questioners.  We hope they have quoted their doctor correctly, and that their doctor has indeed determined the correct diagnosis.  
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