Tenolysis

Tenolysis is surgery to release a tendon affected by adhesions. A tendon is a type of tissue that connects muscle to bone. An adhesion happens when scar tissue forms and binds tendons to surrounding tissue. This can make it difficult for the affected body part to work correctly. For example, adhesion in the fingers can cause the tendons to become stuck. This prevents the fingers from being able to move properly. This surgery is often done on hands and wrists.

  • Call Your Doctor

    Call your doctor if any of the following occurs:

    • Pain that you cannot control with the medications you have been given
    • Signs of infection, such as fever or chills
    • Swelling, redness, or pain from the incision site
    • Numbness or tingling
    • New or worsening symptoms

    If you think you have an emergency, call for medical help right away.

  • Definition

    Tenolysis is surgery to release a tendon affected by adhesions. A tendon is a type of tissue that connects muscle to bone. An adhesion happens when scar tissue forms and binds tendons to surrounding tissue. This can make it difficult for the affected body part to work correctly. For example, adhesion in the fingers can cause the tendons to become stuck. This prevents the fingers from being able to move properly.

    This surgery is often done on hands and wrists.

    Tendons in Finger
    Finger Tendon
    Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

  • What to Expect

  • Reasons for Procedure

    You may have tendon adhesions if you had an injury to the area or if you had surgery that affected the tendon. Tenolysis is done when other therapies, like physical therapy, are unsuccessful.

    In addition to tenolysis, other procedures may need to be done. The goal is to have full movement of the affected body part.

  • Possible Complications

    Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review potential problems, like:

    • Damage to nerves or other nearby structures
    • Inability to have full movement of the affected body part
    • Pain and stiffness
    • Infection
    • Ruptured tendon
    • Amputation

    Before your procedure, talk to your doctor about ways to manage factors that may increase your risk of complications such as:

    • Smoking
    • Excessive alcohol use
    • Chronic disease such as diabetes or obesity