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A tendon (or sinew) is a tough band of fibrous connective tissue that usually connects muscle to bone and is capable of withstanding tension. Tendons are similar to ligaments and fascia as they are both made of collagen except that ligaments join one bone to another bone, and fascia connect muscles to other muscles. Tendons and muscles work together and can only exert a pulling force.
Structure[edit | edit source]
Normal healthy tendons are composed of parallel arrays of collagen fibers closely packed together. The fibers are mostly collagen type I, however there are also collagen type III and V present. These collagens are held together with other proteins, particularly the proteoglycan, decorin and, in compressed regions of tendon, aggrecan. The tenocytes produce the collagen molecules which aggregate end-to-end and side-to-side to produce collagen fibrils. Fibril bundles are organized to form fibers with the elongated tenocytes closely packed between them. Collagen fibers coalesce into macroaggregates. Groups of macroaggregates are bounded by connective tissue endotendon and are termed fascicles. Groups of fascicles are bounded by the epitendon and peritendon to form the tendon organ.
Blood vessels may be visualized within the endotendon running parallel to collagen fibers, with occasional branching transverse anastomoses.
The internal tendon bulk is thought to contain no nerve fibers, but the epi- and peritendon contain nerve endings, while Golgi tendon organs are present at the junction between tendon and muscle.
Tendon length varies in all major groups and from person to person. Tendon length is practically the discerning factor where muscle size and potential muscle size is concerned. For example, should all other relevant biological factors be equal, a man with a shorter tendons and a longer biceps muscle will have greater potential for muscle mass than a man with a longer tendon and a shorter muscle. Successful bodybuilders will generally have shorter tendons. Conversely, in sports requiring athletes to excel in actions such as running or jumping, it is beneficial to have longer than average Achilles tendon and a shorter calf muscle.
Tendon length is determined by genetic predisposition, and has not been shown to either increase or decrease in response to environment, unlike muscles which can be shortened by trauma, use imbalances and a lack of recovery and stretching.[How to reference and link to summary or text]
Function[edit | edit source]
Tendons have been traditionally considered to simply be a mechanism by which muscles connect to bone, functioning simply to transmit forces. However, over the past two decades, much research focused on the elastic properties of tendons and their ability to function as springs. This allows tendons to passively modulate forces during locomotion, providing additional stability with no active work. It also allows tendons to store and recover energy at high efficiency. For example, during a human stride, the Achilles tendon stretches as the ankle joint dorsiflexes. During the last portion of the stride, as the foot plantar-flexes (pointing the toes down), the stored elastic energy is released. Furthermore, because the tendon stretches, the muscle is able to function with less or even no change in length, allowing the muscle to generate greater force.
Pathology[edit | edit source]
Tendinitis refers to inflammation of a tendon.
Tendinosis refers to non-inflammatory injury to the tendon at the cellular level. The tendons in the foot are highly complex and intricate. If any tendons break it is a long painful healing process, not to mention the intricacy of the repairing (if fully severed) process. Most people that do not receive medical attention within the first 48 hours of the injury will suffer from severe swelling, pain, and an on-fire feeling where the injury occurred. They are very painful when they are inflamed or not in use.
See also[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
Further reading[edit | edit source]
Papers[edit | edit source]
- Alfredson, H. (2005). The chronic painful Achilles and patellar tendon: Research on basic biology and treatment: Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports Vol 15(4) Aug 2005, 252-259.
- Alfredson, H. (2006). Strategies in treatment of tendon overuse injury. The chronic painful tendon: European Journal of Sport Science Vol 6(2) Jun 2006, 81-85.
- Arslan, Y. Z., Hacioglu, Y., & Yagiz, N. (2008). Prosthetic hand finger control using fuzzy sliding modes: Journal of Intelligent & Robotic Systems Vol 52(1) May 2008, 121-138.
- Bastin, J., Calvin, S., & Montagne, G. (2006). Muscular proprioception contributes to the control of interceptive actions: Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance Vol 32(4) Aug 2006, 964-972.
- Brunia, C. H., & Van Boxtel, A. (1978). MSH/ACTH-sub(4-20 ) and task-induced increase in tendon reflexes and heart rate: Pharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior Vol 9(5) Nov 1978, 615-618.
- Brunia, C. H., Zwaga, H. J., & van Boxtel, A. (1973). Tenden reflex amplitude with increasing task difficulty: Ergonomics Vol 16(4) Jul 1973, 495-499.
- Casini, L., Romaiguere, P., Ducorps, A., Schwartz, D., Anton, J.-L., & Roll, J.-P. (2006). Cortical correlates of illusory hand movement perception in humans: A MEG study: Brain Research Vol 1121(1) Nov 2006, 200-206.
- Chang, G. Y. (2002). 'Belly Dancing' in Coma: European Neurology Vol 48(1) Jul 2002, 51-53.
- Cheng, T. (2007). Mechanical properties of human middle ear tissues. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering.
- de Jong, B. M., Coert, J. H., Stenekes, M. W., Leenders, K. L., Paans, A. M. J., & Nicolai, J. P. A. (2003). Cerebral reorganisation of human hand movement following dynamic immobilisation: Neuroreport: For Rapid Communication of Neuroscience Research Vol 14(13) Sep 2003, 1693-1696.
- de Steiner, C. M. (2003). The stigmas of a congenital malformation: Revista Uruguaya de Psicoanalisis No 98 Nov 2003, 148-162.
- Filla, A., de Michele, G., Cavalcanti, F., Perretti, A., & et al. (1990). Clinical and genetic heterogeneity in early onset cerebellar ataxia with retained tendon reflexes: Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry Vol 53(8) Aug 1990, 667-670.
- Foglia, P., Perini, M., & Vanzulli, F. (1991). Pure amnesia in a case of right thalamic lesion: Italian Journal of Neurological Sciences Vol 12(2) Apr 1991, 211-213.
- Forner-Cordero, A., Steyvers, M., Levin, O., Alaerts, K., & Swinnen, S. P. (2008). Changes in corticomotor excitability following prolonged muscle tendon vibration: Behavioural Brain Research Vol 190(1) Jun 2008, 41-49.
- Frijns, C. J. M., Laman, D. M., van Duijn, M. A. J., & van Duijn, H. (1997). Normal values of patellar and ankle tendon reflex latencies: Clinical Neurology and Neurosurgery Vol 99(1) Feb 1997, 31-36.
- Gajdosik, R. L. (2006). Relation of Age and Passive Properties of an Ankle Dorsiflexion Stretch to the Timed One-Leg Stance Test in Older Women: Perceptual and Motor Skills Vol 103(1) Aug 2006, 177-182.
- Gibson, W., Arendt-Nielsen, L., & Graven-Nielsen, T. (2006). Referred pain and hyperalgesia in human tendon and muscle belly tissue: Pain Vol 120(1-2) Jan 2006, 113-123.
- Irwin, C. B., & Radwin, R. G. (2008). A new method for estimating hand internal loads from external force measurements: Ergonomics Vol 51(2) Jan 2008, 156-167.
- Jennings, J. R., Van der Molen, M. W., Brock, K., & Somsen, R. J. (1993). How are tonic and phasic cardiovascular changes related to central motor command? : Biological Psychology Vol 35(3) Jul 1993, 237-254.
- Kammers, M. P. M., van der Ham, I. J. M., & Dijkerman, H. C. (2006). Dissociating body representations in healthy individuals: Differential effects of a kinaesthetic illusion on perception and action: Neuropsychologia Vol 44(12) 2006, 2430-2436.
- Khan, S. I., & Burne, J. A. (2007). Reflex inhibition of normal cramp following electrical stimulation of the muscle tendon: Journal of Neurophysiology Vol 98(3) Sep 2007, 1102-1107.
- Kistemaker, D. A., Van Soest, A. J., & Bobbert, M. F. (2006). Is Equilibrium Point Control Feasible for Fast Goal-Directed Single-Joint Movements? : Journal of Neurophysiology Vol 95(5) May 2006, 2898-2912.
- Kito, T., Hashimoto, T., Yoneda, T., Katamoto, S., & Naito, E. (2006). Sensory processing during kinesthetic aftereffect following illusory hand movement elicited by tendon vibration: Brain Research Vol 1114(1) Oct 2006, 75-84.
- Klatzky, R. (1991). Touch illuminated: PsycCRITIQUES Vol 36 (3), Mar, 1991.
- Kleinhenz, J., Streitberger, K., Windeler, J., Gussbacher, A., Mavridis, G., & Martin, E. (1999). Randomised clinical trial comparing the effects of acupuncture and a newly designed placebo needle in rotator cuff tendinitis: Pain Vol 83(2) Nov 1999, 235-241.
- Kong, Y., Jang, H., & Freivalds, A. (2006). Wrist and Tendon Dynamics as Contributory Risk Factors in Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorders: Human Factors and Ergonomics in Manufacturing Vol 16(1) Win 2006, 83-105.
- Kortman, B. (1992). Patient recall and understanding of instructions concerning splints following a zone 2 flexor tendon repair: Australian Occupational Therapy Journal Vol 39(2) Jun 1992, 5-11.
- Laurin, J., Gondin, J., Dousset, E., & Decherchi, P. (2008). Effect of tenotomy on metabosensitive afferent fibers from tibialis anterior muscle: Experimental Brain Research Vol 186(1) Mar 2008, 87-92.
- Leclerc, A., Landre, M.-F., Chastang, J.-F., Niedhammer, I., & Roquelaure, Y. (2001). Upper-limb disorders in repetitive work: Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health Vol 27(4) Aug 2001, 268-278.
- Leijnse, J. N. A. L., Carter, S., Gupta, A., & McCabe, S. (2008). Anatomic basis for individuated surface EMG and homogeneous electrostimulation with neuroprostheses of the extensor digitorum communis: Journal of Neurophysiology Vol 100(1) Jul 2008, 64-75.
- Liu, H.-Y. (2008). In vivo evaluation of the stiffness of the patellar tendon. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering.
- McDonough, S. M., Clowry, G. J., Miller, S., & Eyre, J. A. (2001). Reciprocal and Renshaw (recurrent) inhibition are functional in man at birth: Brain Research Vol 899(1-2) Apr 2001, 66-81.
- Mehta, B. P., & Shmerling, R. H. (2008). Teaching neuroImage: Cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis: Neurology Vol 71(2) Jul 2008, e4.
- Moore, J. C. (1984). The Golgi tendon organ: A review and update: American Journal of Occupational Therapy Vol 38(4) Apr 1984, 227-236.
- Morris, A. F., Vaughan, S. E., & Vaccaro, P. (1982). Measurements of neuromuscular tone and strength in Down's syndrome children: Journal of Mental Deficiency Research Vol 26(1) Mar 1982, 41-46.
- Pearson, S. J., & Onambele, G. N. L. (2005). Acute changes in knee-extensors torque, fiber pennation, and tendon characteristics: Chronobiology International Vol 22(6) 2005, 1013-1027.
- Pestronk, A., Florence, J., Levine, T., Al-Lozi, M. T., Lopate, G., Miller, T., et al. (2004). Sensory exam with a quantitative tuning fork: Rapid, sensitive and predictive of SNAP amplitude: Neurology Vol 62(3) Feb 2004, 461-464.
- Recktenwald, M. R., Hodgson, J. A., Roy, R. R., Riazanski, S., McCall, G. E., Kozlovskaya, I., et al. (1999). Effects of spaceflight on rhesus quadrupedal locomotion after return to 1G: Journal of Neurophysiology Vol 81(5) May 1999, 2451-2463.
- Romaiguere, P., Anton, J.-L., Roth, M., Casini, L., & Roll, J.-P. (2003). Motor and parietal cortical areas both underlie kinaesthesia: Cognitive Brain Research Vol 16(1) Mar 2003, 74-82.
- Romaiguere, P., Calvin, S., & Roll, J.-P. (2005). Transcranial magnetic stimulation of the sensorimotor cortex alters kinaesthesia: Neuroreport: For Rapid Communication of Neuroscience Research Vol 16(7) May 2005, 693-697.
- Safronov, V. A. (2006). Patellar reflex: I. Studies in healthy subjects: Human Physiology Vol 32(2) Mar 2006, 157-160.
- Schindler, L., Robbins, G., & Hamlin, C. (1994). Functional effect of bilateral tendon transfers on a person with C-5 quadriplegia: American Journal of Occupational Therapy Vol 48(8) Aug 1994, 750-757.
- Silva, J. G., Knackfuss, I. G., Portella, C. E., do Vale Bastos, V. H., de Castro Dutra Machado, D., Basile, L., et al. (2006). EEG spectral coherence at patients submitted to tendon transfer surgery: Study pre and post-surgery: Arquivos de Neuro-Psiquiatria Vol 64(2-B) Jun 2006, 473-477.
- Sival, D. A., Brouwer, O. F., Bruggink, J. L. M., Vles, J. S. H., Staal-Schreinemachers, A. L., Sollie, K. M., et al. (2006). Movement analysis in neonates with spina bifida aperta: Early Human Development Vol 82(4) Apr 2006, 227-234.
- Steffen, H., & Kolling, G. H. (2005). Single or Combined Oblique Muscle Surgery in Acquired and Congenital Superior Oblique Palsy. New York, NY: New York Academy of Sciences.
- Thompson, C., Belanger, M., & Fung, J. (2007). Effects of bilateral Achilles tendon vibration on postural orientation and balance during standing: Clinical Neurophysiology Vol 118(11) Nov 2007, 2456-2467.
- Verschueren, S. M. P., & Swinnen, S. P. (2001). Dynamic position sense during a cyclical drawing movement: Effects of application with withdrawal of tendon vibration: Neuropsychologia Vol 39(5) Mar 2001, 510-520.
- Vogelsang, L. M. (1993). The relationship of lifestyle management to the development of carpal tunnel syndrome: Dissertation Abstracts International.
- Wargon, I., Lamy, J. C., Baret, M., Ghanim, Z., Aymard, C., Penicaud, A., et al. (2006). The disynaptic group I inhibition between wrist flexor and extensor muscles revisited in humans: Experimental Brain Research Vol 168(1-2) Jan 2006, 203-217.
Dissertations[edit | edit source]
- Alghadir, A. H. (2007). Conservative treatment of plantar fasciitis with dorsiflexion night splints and medial arch supports: A prospective randomized study. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering.
- Blake, K. E. (1993). Self-monitoring and feedback: Reducing the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome in keyboard entry tasks: Dissertation Abstracts International.
- Dipasquale, C. (2008). Association of estradiol and progesterone with knee anterior cruciate ligament injury factors: Ligament laxity, skeletal muscle strength, and tendon extensibility. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering.
- Fedorczyk, J. M. (2008). Relationship between the neurochemical response in tendons and motor behavior changes in a rat model of upper extremity work-related musculoskeletal disorder. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering.
- Lu, H. (2007). Low intensity pulsed ultrasound accelerates bone-tendon junction healing. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering.
- Neville, C. G. (2009). The effect of deep posterior compartment muscle strength on foot kinematics, forefoot loading, and function in subjects with stage II posterior tibial tendon dysfunction. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering.
- Yeung, C. K. (2008). The effect of therapeutic ultrasound on tendon healing and sensory nerve regeneration after achilles tendon rupture. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering.
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