Tenex Health TX® is a minimally invasive treatment used to eliminate or reduce tendon and soft tissue pain by stimulating the body’s own healing response. Tenex is an FDA-cleared procedure that is clinically effective for greater than 85% of patients and reports a low-complications rate. Utilizing a special needle that performs a tenotomy of the damaged tendon under ultrasound guidance, this one-time procedure targets the site of pain and damaged tissue without disrupting surrounding healthy tissue. This procedure is covered by most insurance companies.
Two of our fellowship-trained family and sports medicine providers, Dominic Femiano, M.D., and Tracy Hamblin, M.D., specialize in offering non-surgical treatment methods through our Sports Medicine Center and lead the team that offers Tenex Health TX.
About the Consultation
Prior to a patient consultation, our physicians review all patient data, including clinical notes from a referring provider and any prior diagnostic studies (e.g., X-ray, MRI, ultrasound). Tenex Health TX is best suited for patients with chronic pain (>3 months) of the affected tendon and who have not responded to conservative medical treatment, including rest, ice, bracing, and physical therapy. In the event that your tendon pain would be better treated with surgical intervention, you may be referred to one of our fellowship-trained orthopaedic surgeons. Your physician will work closely with you to explain your treatment options and determine the course of treatment that is right for you.
Tenex Health TX addresses the most common areas for tendon and soft-tissue injuries, including:
- Lateral and medial epicondylitis or tennis and golfer’s elbow
- Swimmer’s shoulder—rotator cuff tendonitis or calcific tendonitis
- Patellar tendonitis or jumper’s knee
- Achilles tendonitis
- Plantar fasciitis
- Knee osteoarthritis
How It Works
The Tenex procedure, also known as percutaneous tenotomy and fasciotomy, takes approximately 15 – 20 minutes, and during which time, you will remain awake and alert. The sports medicine physician will prepare the area with a disinfectant cleanser followed by a local anesthetic to numb the area where the pain is localized. Using ultrasound imaging to identify the area of damaged tissue, a microincision is made where a small needle called a TX MicroTip is inserted. Generally, there is little pain and a slight pressure reported by patients. The TX MicroTip oscillates to a desired frequency to cut, break up, and remove damaged tissue, leaving the healthy tissue intact. Once the damaged tissue has been removed, a small adhesive bandage is placed over the incision with no need for stitches or sutures.
After the Procedure
Once the procedure is complete, patients may return home and, in some cases, may even drive themselves. The incision will remain covered with a bandage for the next few days and, because it is so small, no sutures or stitches are needed. In the days that follow the procedure, patients may take over-the-counter medication if there is any residual discomfort; however, many patients report instant or rapid pain relief. Generally, patients should avoid any strenuous activities, such as weight-bearing exercises or activities for lower extremity procedures. In the case of ankle and foot procedures, patients should remain in their walking boot for at least 2 weeks. For upper extremity procedures, activities such as heavy lifting and gripping activities should be avoided for at least 2 weeks. Your provider will work with you to create an individual rehabilitation plan; however, most patients report a full return to activities by 6 – 8 weeks.
Why choose the Sports Medicine Center at Olympia Orthopaedic Associates?
Choosing the right doctor is important, and there are many different factors you should consider, including their level of professional training and expertise.
At Olympia Orthopaedic Associates, our sports medicine doctors have had additional training in a specific area of the body or medical specialty. This additional training is referred to as fellowship training. Following their medical residencies, our providers have undergone fellowship training focusing their education specifically on the advanced knowledge and skills needed to treat specific areas of the body or injuries and conditions relating to a specific medical specialty, such as sports medicine. At Olympia Orthopaedic Associates, you are in excellent hands because our sports medicine doctors are fellowship-trained and have the advanced knowledge and skills to treat your injury or condition individually to meet your needs.
To consult with our Olympia Orthopaedic Associates specialists about your treatment options, please request an appointment online or call (360) 709-6230. At our Sports Medicine Center, we offer consultations with a sports medicine doctor Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
You can learn more about the conditions we treat through our patient education resources or our Online Guide to Sports Medicine that references specific topics relating to nutrition and fitness for athletes of all ages, including high school, collegiate, weekend warrior, and professional athletes.