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Tendinopathy and Aging: A Review of Literature and Considerations for Older Adult Athletes

Jonely, Holly ScD, PT, FAAOMPT; Jayaseelan, Dhinu J. DPT, OCS, FAAOMPT; Rieke, Meaghan

Topics in Geriatric Rehabilitation: January/March 2016 - Volume 32 - Issue 1 - p E1–E12
doi: 10.1097/TGR.0000000000000089
The Aging Athlete

Older adult athletes are prone to tendinopathies due to age-related tendon changes. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroid injections have proven ineffective in managing chronic tendinopathies over the long term. Extracorporeal shockwave therapy and platelet-rich plasma injections may be effective in managing late-phase tendinopathy. Eccentric strength training is helpful for managing a variety of tendinopathies. Other effective programs include the Silbernagel combined program, whole body vibration, heavy slow resistance training, and stretching. Deep friction massage, modalities, joint mobilizations, and dry needling can be used in conjunction with exercise. Further research is needed to determine optimal intervention parameters for older adult athletes.

The George Washington University, Program in Physical Therapy, Washington, District of Columbia (Drs Jonely and Jayaseelan and Ms Rieke).

Correspondence: Holly Jonely, ScD, PT, FAAOMPT, The George Washington University, Program in Physical Therapy, 2000 Pennsylvania Ave, NW Ste 2000, Washington, DC 20006 (

The authors have disclosed that they have no significant relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.

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