What is Tenolysis?

Tendons are tissue that connect muscle and bone and pull on bones during muscle contractions. Scar tissue can form on tendons due to injury or after surgical procedures, such as fracture repair. When scar tissue binds to tendons, adhesions form, preventing or restricting movement of the affected body part. Tenolysis is a type of tendon surgery done to release tendons from these adhesions. When physical therapy and other conservative treatments fail to work, tenolysis is an option.

To perform tenolysis, your surgeon will make an incision to expose the tendon. The tissue surrounding the tendon will be cut, and the tendon is released from its adhesions. Your surgeon will assess whether you are better able to move the affected body part. If no further surgery is necessary, your incision will be closed.

Tenolysis is most often performed in the hand or wrist and may take up to one hour. If you experience no complications, you will stay in the hospital for 1-2 days following surgery. After your operation, you may need medication to treat pain or prevent infection or blood clots, and strenuous activity and heavy lifting may be restricted.

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