Fluoroquinolone antibiotics have been associated with adverse effects, including tendinitis. This article will explore fluoroquinolone antibiotics, fluoroquinolone tendonitis, its symptoms, causes, treatment options, and prevention guidelines.
Fluoroquinolones are broad-spectrum antibiotics used to treat bacterial infections. They work by inhibiting DNA synthesis in bacteria, reducing their ability to multiply and cause infections. Common brand names of fluoroquinolones are Levaquin, Cipro, Avelox, and Floxin.
Fluoroquinolone Tendonitis – What is it?
Fluoroquinolone tendonitis is an inflammatory response to fluoroquinolone antibiotics involving the connective tissues, particularly tendons. The inflammation can occur in any tendon in the body, but it more commonly affects the Achilles tendon because of its proximity to the ankle joint.
Symptoms of Fluoroquinolone Tendonitis:
Fluoroquinolone tendonitis symptoms may vary, but the most common are pain, swelling, and stiffness in the affected tendon. The pain can worsen with movement, exercise or weight-bearing activities. Other symptoms may include heat or warmth around the affected area, redness, and limited movement of the affected joint.
Causes of Fluoroquinolone Tendonitis:
The exact mechanism of action leading to fluoroquinolone tendonitis is not completely understood. However, researchers suggest that fluoroquinolones cause damage to the extracellular matrix of the tendon leading to inflammation and degeneration of collagen fibers that make up the tendon. Moreover, fluoroquinolones cause oxidative stress, which further damages the tendon. Additionally, other factors such as age, prior tendon injuries, rheumatoid arthritis, and obesity, may increase the risk of developing fluoroquinolone tendonitis.
Treatment Options for Fluoroquinolone Tendonitis:
The treatment options may vary depending on the severity of the symptoms. Conservative treatment options include rest, ice, physical therapy, immobilization, medications such as Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) and surgery in rare cases.
Prevention of Fluoroquinolone Tendonitis:
Prevention guidelines for fluoroquinolone tendonitis include considering alternative antibiotics, using fluoroquinolones with caution, being alert to symptoms, administering the right dose of the antibiotic, and limiting the treatment duration to the minimum possible time.
Fluoroquinolone tendinitis is a severe injury that requires prompt treatment to prevent long-term complications. Understanding its symptoms, causes, and prevention is crucial for early diagnosis and prompt intervention. If you are experiencing tendon problems while taking these antibiotics, stop using them and seek medical help.