Tendonitis all over - started in foot and arms

by Laura
(Lloydminster, Canada)

I am 29 years old and have had chronic tendon inflammation for about 10 years. First I was diagnosed with plantar fascitis which resulted from walking too long in uncomfortable shoes.

I also had some pain in my knee. I got orthotics and the pain did not go away but was greatly decreased. About 3 years later I worked as a grocery store clerk and developed severe tendonitis in my wrists, elbows and hands from bagging and carrying groceries. I stopped the activity immediately (after just a few days)and rested as much as I could, even using voice recognition software as I was a student.

I tried physio, chiropractor, acupuncture and myofascial therapy. I started to feel somewhat better after a long period of very minimal activity. However, during that time my muscles weakened and I may have gotten RSD (not sure)?

Over the years it has become worse. I play guitar, and I recently spent long periods of time practicing for a gig. At that time my shoulders (rotator cuff) became very painful as well as the pinky side of my left hand. After the show I did not play guitar at all for over a month. I tried to play the other day for just a few minutes and it flared up instantly. My hands and shoulders are hurting right now as I type this.

I also sing and have experienced pain/tightness in my throat muscles when singing, which I was told is muscle tension. (A test ruled out that my vocal chords were damaged). I have always been quite inflexible and my muscles are generally tight (I can't sit on the floor cross legged, have trouble stretching my legs, etc). I still wear orthotics and running shoes every single day (if I don't I get plantar fascitis and occasional shin splints).

I also use tensor bandages when playing, guitar, writing, typing, and often when eating. This pain has caused me to quit several jobs and has greatly limited my ability to do activities I once enjoyed. I now have a job I can manage (social service work) as it does not involve as many repetitive tasks as my previous retail jobs.

I should add that I also have recurring low back pain. This has improved with chiropractic. I also have been diagnosed with dysthimia/depression and have found that
a low dose of antidepressants has some effect in decreasing the pain. However, when I try to get off the meds it returns.

I have gone to doctors but they usually just order blood tests (which come out normal) and prescribe anti-inflammatories. One blood test showed that I am low in vitamin D, and another showed that I am in the "normal" range for thyroid but at the low end (both my mom and grandma have thyroid problems). The main questions I have struggled with for years (and which doctors have not really answered) are: will this pain ever go away? Is it reversible? Is there any damage to the tendons? And how far is it safe for me to push myself without making my condition worse?

I am consantly worried about this - for example, still wondering if I shouldn't have played the gig last month. I've been told that all my worrying is probably making the pain worse.

I just want to feel normal again. Please help! ps. This is really long.


Joshua Answers:

Hi Laura.

You didn't leave your email nor check the notification box, so I hope you find this.

1. Did you get your Vitamin D level up? You REALLY need to get it to between 50-80 ng/ml. ASAP.

2. You need to read and do this page: Magnesium for Tendonitis

3. Will it go away all by itself? No.

4. Is it reversible? Yes.

5. Your tendons don't sound like they're damaged. You can push up to the point where it causes you pain/more pain. Tendonitis can show up with damage, and without damage.

See: What Is Tendonitis

Please reply using the comment link below. Do not submit a new submission to answer/reply, it's too hard for me to find where it's supposed to go.

And, comments have a 3,000 character limit so you may have to comment twice.

Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert

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Comments for Tendonitis all over - started in foot and arms

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Oct 17, 2012
I have RSD
by: JonD

Wondering what happened with you? I'm also a professional musician. Haven't been able to play guitar, drums, keys, or engineer on the computer for quite a few months now. Was originally diagnosed with tendinitis, then inflamed joints, and now just with RSD at a new sports medicine program.

Trying to learn as much about it as possible now.

I hope your health has improved.

May 01, 2017
Sounds like CMT
by: Anonymous

This sounds like CMT to me. It's what I have and it causes tendonitis and nerve pain in extremities, and also the muscle tightness you spoke of.


Joshua Comments:

Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, you mean?

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