Most Common Tendon Injuries

Tendon injuries can be a serious problem and may result in excruciating pain and permanent damage if left untreated. Each type of tendon injury varies in severity. To help you learn more, here are a list of common tendon injuries and common causes.

4 Common Tendon Injuries

The 4 most common tendon injuries include the quadriceps, Achilles, rotator cuff, and biceps:

• The Quadriceps are a group of 4 muscles that come together above your kneecap to form the patellar tendon. Most commonly referred to as quads, this group of muscles is used to extend the leg at the knee and aids in walking, running and jumping.
• The Achilles is located on the back portion of the foot just above the heel, where the calf muscles attaches to the heel of the foot. This tendon is vital for pushing off the foot and it helps you stand on your tiptoes and push off when you lift off the heel.
• The Rotator Cuff is in the shoulder and is composed of 4 muscle groups that function together to raise your arm out to the side, to help you rotate the arm, and to keep your shoulder from popping out of its socket.
Biceps are a group of arm muscles that bring the hand toward the shoulder by bending the elbow. Ruptures of the biceps are extremely rare and only occur at the top of your shoulder.

Common Causes of a Ruptured Tendon

A tendon rupture is most common in middle-aged or older men. In young adults, muscles usually tear before the attached tendon does but in older adults (specifically those with diseases such as gout and hyperparathyroidism) tendon ruptures are more common.

General causes of tendon ruptures include:

• Direct trauma. This occurs from direct contact from athletic activities or trauma.
• Advanced age. As you age, your blood supply decreases.
• Eccentric loading. When your muscle contracts while it is being stretched, increased stress is placed on the involved tendon.
• Steroid injection into the tendon. This treatment is sometimes used for severe tendonitis.

Tendon ruptures in quadriceps are caused by:

• Direct trauma to the knee just above the kneecap.
• Advanced aging and decreased blood supply to the inside of the tendon.
• Combination of quadriceps contraction and stretching of the muscle

Tendon ruptures in the Achilles are caused by:

• Advanced aging and decreased blood supply to the inside of the tendon.
• Strenuous physical activity by those who are not well conditioned
• Direct trauma
• Unexpected forcing of the sole of your foot upward (i.e. landing on your feet alter jumping from a height)
• Excessive strain while pushing off with the weight bearing foot

Tendon ruptures in the rotator cuff are caused by:

• Lifting a heavy object overhead
• Direct trauma
• Attempting to break a fall with an outstretched hand

Tendon ruptures in biceps are caused by:

• Forced flexion of the arm
• Traumatic rupture usually occurs when lifting 150 pounds or more
• Advanced age resulting in gradual weakening of the tendon
• May occur spontaneously

Schedule a Consultation

If you suspect that you are experiencing any tendon injuries, consult your doctor to look at your bones via X-ray or MRI. Other tests may also be conducted to isolate the problem.

Dr. Jamshidinia at Century City Medical Plaza is a board-certified foot surgeon trained in all areas of foot and ankle surgery. He is Board Certified by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery and a Fellow of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. For concerns regarding common foot injuries do not hesitate to contact us today!