Spotlight on Achilles Tendinitis
Tendons are the thick cords of tissue that connect muscles to bone. When tendons become inflamed they can cause pain and swelling. There many types of foot and ankle tendinitis such as posterior tibial tendinitis, peroneal tendinitis and Achilles tendinitis. Achilles Tendinitis is the inflammation of the tendon that connects the calf muscle to the back of the heel bone.
What is the cause of Achilles Tendinitis?
Tendinitis can be a result of injury or over use. Some causes are:
Improper stretching prior or post activity leading to overly tight calves
Sudden increase in physical activity levels
What are the symptoms of Achilles Tendinitis?
Pain - this can be along on the tendon, close to the heels, or pain when rising on the toes or pushing off the toes
Swelling - the skin over the tendon may swell, as well as tenderness.
What can you do for at Home Care?
Remember to R-I-C-E, especially in the first 48 hours of an Achilles injury.
Rest - stay off your foot and ankle as much as possible
Ice - use ice packs to assist with the swelling and pain. Apply ice for up to 15 mins at a time, 3-4 times a day
Compress - compress the foot and ankle with an elastic compression bandage
Elevate - keep your foot elevated whilst the inflammation settles down.
Please note, if you can’t stand up on your toes, or walk properly, you may have ruptured the tendon and it’s advisable to see the doctor immediately.
When should you see a Podiatrist?
If your pain does not go away with the above care, or if it persists over a long period i.e. more than a week, make an appointment to see a Podiatrist.
Our Podiatrist will ask you more questions about the pain to better understand your situation and carry out a physical examination of your feet and ankle. Supplementary tests such as an X-ray may be requested in order to ensure there are no fractures or torn tendons.
What are the Treatment Options and Prevention Strategies?
Treatment will vary on a case by case basis depending on individual needs. Our Podiatrists provide a holistic treatment plan focused to individual needs. Our plans focus on relieving pain but also on preventing further injuries. We use a variety of foot therapies to achieve this which may range from daily stretching exercises, to orthotics to control the motion of the foot.