Health + Wellness

My Struggles with Tendinitis + Bursitis – Help!

May 3, 2014
Tendinitis Brace

Time for a little rant and request for recommendations..

Last July I started experiencing pain around my right elbow. Since then, it’s spread to my right shoulder and bicep. I attended the 12 sessions of physical therapy my insurance would cover, had a weird nerve test from my neurologist and had numerous x-rays, and finally, after 8 months or so, I was sent to the Orthopedist. He simply said it was tendinitis in my elbow and bicep and bursitis in my shoulder. Basically, a lot of inflammation, most likely from my long hours on the computer.

My orthopedist has me on a muscle relaxer, Celebrex and Tramadol. None of them are working, and I don’t like taking so many medications. He said the next step is Valium and then surgery. I laughed when he said Valium, because he had been joking about how insanely tight my shoulders and neck are, but apparently he wasn’t kidding. (I’m always awkward like that, laughing at the wrong time, in case you were wondering.)

Things I’ve tried:

  • Wrist brace, elbow tendon brace (the one that sits just below your elbow..I don’t know what it’s called)
  • Yoga (not sure if it’s helping or hurting my shoulder)
  • Every muscle rub available, pretty much, plus epsom salt baths
  • Changing my typing/working positions
  • Anti-inflammatory foods (so much turmeric my fingers were orange!)

The thing I’m struggling with the most is giving my arm a rest. I’ve taken short breaks here and there, but I make my living with the computer, so it’s challenging (and so frustrating!).

SO, this is basically a last-ditch effort to reach out to the blogging community and see if anyone else has experienced this! I know different things work for different people, but I’m open to suggestions.

Things I haven’t tried but am looking into:

  • Acupuncture
  • Visiting a Chiropractor
  • A more extreme diet overhaul (Anti-inflammatory foods, cutting out sugar, wheat, etc. completely)
  • Swimming to build strength (have gone twice)
  • Bikram Yoga

Anti-Inflammatory Foods List

Has anyone had success with curing it while still using the computer? If I take a break, how long should I rest it?

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  • Rachel May 5, 2014 at 10:33 am

    I would skip the chatarungas (or drop your knees) in yoga unless you are positive you are doing them correctly 100% of the time. That can aggravate your shoulders very easily. Have you tried heat/ice on your wrist?

    • Dzeigler May 5, 2014 at 10:55 am

      I do most of my yoga at home right now, so there’s a good chance I’m not doing everything (anything) correctly. I’m also very bad at remembering to use heat/’s so simple and would probably help. haha. Thanks for the reminder!

      • Rachel May 6, 2014 at 7:45 am

        definitely skip the chatarungas! most people do them wrong, and they can destroy your shoulders

  • Lauren May 6, 2014 at 7:20 pm

    I like your list of things to try… if it were me, I’d give a chiropractor a try. An anti-inflammatory diet can be helpful too or elimination diet to see if there are any food sensitivities playing a role. PS – Just found your blog & loved the really great list of posts to read for the week.

  • Julie March 11, 2016 at 11:55 pm

    This sounds all too familiar. You should google psoriatic arthritis. Do you have pitted fingernails? Sacroiliac joint pain? What seems like dandruff? Foot pain?
    Some or all of these could be an autoimmune disease such as psoriatic arthritis. It took 6 years for me to get diagnosed. By the way I don’t have any skin psoriasis.