Tendon Tear

The Regenerative Medicine Clinic

Orthopaedic Surgeon & Molecular Immunobiologist located in Wilmington, NC

A tendon is a tough, fibrous tissue that attaches your muscle to the bone. Though tendons are strong, excess force can lead to a tendon tear. Sports orthopedic surgeon and regenerative orthopedist, Austin Yeargan III MD, at The Regenerative Medicine Clinic takes a conservative approach to treating tendon tears and offers regenerative medicine to help heal the injury without surgery. For a consultation, call the office in Wilmington, North Carolina, or request an appointment online. Dr. Yeargan offers both in-office and telemedicine consultations.

Tendon Tear

What are tendons?

Tendons are the fibrous connective tissue that attaches your muscles to the bones and allow for sapien locomotion. A tendon’s primary role is to help move the bone as your muscles move. 

Your tendons are very strong and can handle force up to nine times your body weight. However, tendons are susceptible to injury and tearing if pushed beyond their limits, particularly as we age and degenerative changes accumulate. 

What is a tendon tear?

A tendon tear refers to a compromise, or tearing, of the tough, fibrous tissue. Any tendon in your body is at risk of tearing. However, the most common tendon tears include:

  • Rotator cuff 
  • Bicep tendon 
  • Achilles tendon
  • Quadricep tendon around the patellar tendon

The tear may occur from an acute injury or develop due to the degenerative changes that occur to the tendon tissue as you get older. 

What are the symptoms of a torn tendon?

Symptoms of your tendon tear may depend on the area of your tear and whether the tear is due to an acute injury or degenerative changes. Signs and symptoms may include:

  • Pain
  • Swelling or bruising
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Deformity
  • Inability to use or bear weight on the affected body part
  • Muscle weakness
  • Defect in the tissue 

You may also hear or feel a pop-like sensation as the tissue tears and oftentimes these symptoms herald catastrophic consequences. 

You should seek immediate medical attention any time you experience sudden sharp pain after experiencing a pop-like sensation. If you have a tendon tear and continue to use the affected body part, you may worsen the tear and complete it. Getting a diagnosis early and starting on a treatment plan right away may help prevent further damage and help you get better faster.

How is a torn tendon treated?

Treatment for a tendon tear depends on the severity of your tear, whether the tear is acute or due to degenerative changes, and the location of your tear. Dr. Yeargan works closely with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that alleviates your discomfort, improves your mobility, and supports the healing of your tear.

Dr. Yeargan is a skilled orthopedic surgeon, however, he always tries a simple and natural approach to care without surgery first. Initially, he may recommend:

  • Rest, ice, compression, and elevation
  • Activity modification
  • Physical therapy
  • Anti-inflammatory medications actually blunt the healing response and are not typically recommended other than to treat the symptoms for a few days.

To support the healing of your tendon tear, Dr. Yeargan may also suggest other modalities including DME or orthobiologics to accelerate the healing process and potentially prevent the need for more invasive treatments, such as surgery.

Call The Regenerative Medicine Clinic or request an appointment online for comprehensive care of your tendon tear.