How diabetes can cause tendon damage
How diabetes can cause tendon damage – If you have diabetes and it hurts when you move, it may be due to tendon problems. They are rope-like bands that connect muscles to bones. The high blood sugar levels that can accompany your illness play a major role in stirring up your tendon problem.He has tendons all over his body, including his shoulders, arms, wrists, hips, knees, and ankles.
They transfer the force of your muscles to your bones so that you can move.If your diabetes is not under control, your tendons can thicken and become more likely to tear.
How does diabetes damage my tendons?
Tendon damage in type 1 and type 2 diabetes occurs due to substances called advanced glycation end products (AGEs). They form when protein or fat mixes with sugar in the bloodstream.
Normally, your body produces AGEs at a slow and steady rate. But when you have diabetes, the excess sugar in your blood speeds up, which affects your tendons.
Tendons are made of a protein called collagen. AGEs form a bond with it that can change the structure of the tendons and affect their function. For example, they may become thicker than normal and may not be able to support as much weight as they used to. As a result, your chances of tearing one of your tendons increase.
Some tendon problems you may have if you don’t control your diabetes include:
• Frozen shoulder: Stiffness and pain that occurs when a capsule that surrounds the joint’s tendons and ligaments thickens.
• Rotator cuff tears: Damage to the tendons and muscles surrounding the shoulder joint, including the supraspinatus muscle.
• Trigger finger: Your finger gets stuck in a bent position and straightens with a clicking sound, like the sound of a trigger being pulled.
• Carpal tunnel syndrome: You feel numbness, tingling, and weakness in your wrist due to pressure on the nerve that runs through it.
• Dupuytren’s contracture: Thickening of the tissue under the skin of the hand that causes the fingers to bend toward the palm.
Tendon damage is painful and can make it hard to move the joint. Even if you have surgery to repair the damage, the tendon can tear again. Studies show that more than a third of people with diabetes who have surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff will have the problem again.
How can tendon damage affect my diabetes?
Exercise is important to help keep your diabetes under control, but you may find it more difficult to exercise when your tendons are sore and stiff.
Damage to the Achilles tendon at the back of the heel can limit how much the ankle can move. This limited movement forces you to put extra pressure on your midfoot with every step, increasing your risk of foot ulcers.
Talk to your doctor about ways to make sure your blood sugar levels stay low while you heal from tendon problems.
How can I prevent and treat tendon damage?
The best way to prevent tendon problems is to control your diabetes. Lower your blood sugar level with the help of diet, exercise, and medicine. And if you are overweight, try to lose a few kilos. It will improve your health and relieve pressure on your tendons at the same time.
If you already have tendon damage, talk to your doctor about treatments like these:
• Pain relievers such as aspirin or ibuprofen
• Muscle relaxants
• Physiotherapy and exercise
• Heat or ice
• A splint to keep the joint firm while the tendons heal
Your doctor may also suggest a steroid injection into the joint to relieve tendon problems. Be aware that steroids can cause a short-term spike in your blood sugar levels. Ask your doctor if the benefits of this treatment outweigh the risks.
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