Tendinitis is inflammation or irritation of a tendon, which is a thick, fibrous chord that attaches muscles to bone. Common symptoms include pain, tenderness and mild swelling. The pain is usually located near a joint and is aggravated by movement. Depending upon the location, tendinitis produces specific types of pain such as tennis elbow on the outer side of the elbow; Achilles tendinitis just above the heel; adductor tendinitis in the groin; patellar tendinitis just below the knee cap; and rotator cuff tendinitis in the shoulder. Injury, over use, and inflammation of the tendon are the usual causes of tendinitis.
The Ayurvedic treatment of tendinitis is aimed at treating the damage to the tendon, reducing inflammation and promoting healing. Commonly used medicines for this purpose are: Triphala-Guggulu, Trayo-Dashang-Guggulu, Yograj-Guggulu, Maha-Rasnadi-Guggulu, Maha-Rasnadi-Qadha, Maha-Vat-Vidhwans-Ras, Ekangveer-Ras and Agnitundi-Ras.
Herbal medicines used for this purpose are: Rasna (Pluchea lanceolata), Deodar (Cedrus deodara), Vishwa (Zinziber officinalis), Dashmool (Ten roots), Nirgundi (Vitex negundo), Chitrak (Plumbago zeylanica), Tagar (Valeriana wallichii) and Guggulu (Commiphora mukul). Patients who do not respond to these medicines are given other medicines like Kaishor-Guggulu, Panch-Tikta-Ghrut-Guggulu, Laxadi-Guggulu, Maha-Yograj-Guggulu, Tapyadi-Loh, Agnitundi-Ras and Trivang-Bhasma.
For local application on the affected parts, medicated oils like Mahanarayan oil, Chandan-Bala-Laxadi oil, Mahamash oil and Vishgarbha oil are used. Medicated steam fomentation of the affected parts is done using decoctions of Nirgundi and Dashmool. This procedure is called ‘Naadi-Sweda’. A few patients with persistent swelling in the tendons may respond to other procedures like localized blood-letting using leeches.
For most people, tendinitis usually disappears within a matter of a few weeks or months, with adequate rest and the appropriate treatment. Aggravating factors at the work place or in sports activities need to be identified and suitably modified, to facilitate early recovery and avoid recurrence.