Achilles tendonitis is a painful inflammatory condition that affects the back of the ankle at the site if the Achilles tendon. Achilles tendonitis can be a debilitating condition, as the pain inhibits the function of the foot and ankle, making walking and other activities difficult.
What is Achilles tendonitis?
Achilles tendonitis refers to inflammation of the Achilles tendon, which
produces pain at the back of the ankle anywhere along the course of the
Achilles tendon. The result of Achilles tendonitis is pain and swelling in
the Achilles tendon, which then restricts movement and impairs the function
of the ankle and foot.
Chiropody.co.uk can help you if you have Achilles tendonitis by providing you with a treatment plan designed to reduce any pain and to improve foot and lower limb function. The aim of treatment for Achilles tendonitis is to eliminate the problem and prevent re-occurrence.
What causes Achilles Tendonitis?
Achilles tendonitis is typically an overuse injury; doing too much too soon is often the underlying cause. Achilles tendonitis may also be due to poor foot and lower limb mechanics, which can increase the pull and tension that is exerted at the Achilles tendon and lead to injury.
What are the signs and symptoms of Achilles tendonitis?
The signs and symptoms of Achilles tendonitis include one or more of the following:
- Pain and tenderness in the Achilles tendon
- Swelling at the back of the ankle
- Difficulty lowering the heels to the ground
- Altered gait
If you are experiencing any of the above, you should be assessed so that the correct diagnosis can be made and the appropriate treatment implemented.
How is Achilles tendonitis diagnosed?
At Chiropody.co.uk our podiatrists will diagnose Achilles tendonitis following a thorough medical and social history, the signs and symptoms, and an examination of the Achilles tendon. If poor foot and lower limb mechanics are contributing to your Achilles tendonitis then this will be discussed with you and a biomechanical assessment will be arranged.
Benefits of podiatry for Achilles tendonitis
If you have Achilles tendonitis you will benefit from podiatry. The pain
associated with Achilles tendonitis is caused by inflammation in the
Achilles tendon. The inflammation is due to poor foot and lower limb
Podiatry will benefit you if you have Achilles tendonitis by:
- Improving your lower limb biomechanics
- Reducing any painful symptoms
- Reducing any tightness in the calf and Achilles tendon
- Offloading the Achilles tendon
Podiatry relieves the painful symptoms of Achilles tendonitis by offloading
the Achilles tendon with the provision of heel raises and orthoses (which
are prescribed following a biomechanical assessment). Orthoses and heel
raises, or a combination of the two, work by taking the tension off of the
Achilles tendon, allowing it to heal.
If you have Achilles tendonitis a stretching programme will be beneficial as it will reduce any tightness in the Achilles tendon and calf muscles. Tightness in the calf and Achilles tendon means the tendon is not as flexible as it should be, which can cause the Achilles tendon to tear or become inflamed. A stretching programme for the calf and Achilles tendon will help to prevent any further episodes of Achilles tendonitis.
Orthoses and a stretching programme may be combined with ultrasound. Ultrasound uses sound waves to penetrate the tissue and stimulate healing.
Steroid injections may be prescribed in some cases. Steroid injections reduce inflammation, which is the cause of pain in Achilles tendonitis. The benefit of a steroid injection for Achilles tendonitis is the elimination of pain, which is brought about by the steroids ability to reduce inflammation.
What would podiatry for Achilles tendonitis involve?
At Chiropody.co.uk treatment for Achilles tendonitis is subject to a
thorough assessment. Upon a diagnosis of Achilles tendonitis, a treatment
plan will be formulated. The aim of treatment for Achilles tendonitis is to
reduce any pain that you may be experiencing in the Achilles tendon. Pain
is reduced by improving the function of the foot and lower limb, so that
any unnecessary stress is taken away from the Achilles tendon, this allows
the tendon to heal.
The treatment options available at Chiropody.co.uk for Achilles tendonitis include:
- Heel raise
- Steroid injections
- Stretching Programmes
- Manipulation / mobilisation
- Myofascial release
- Soft tissue mobilisation
- Trigger point therapy
- Advice and education
- Footwear review
Treatment for Achilles tendonitis varies according to the individual patient. All treatment plans at Chiropody.co.uk are designed specifically for you.
Achilles tendonitis produces pain and swelling at the back of the ankle,
anywhere along the course of the Achilles tendon. Achilles tendonitis has a
number of causes. It is important that the cause of your Achilles
tendonitis is diagnosed so that an appropriate treatment plan can be put
into action. At Chiropody.co.uk our podiatrists are highly skilled in the
diagnosis and treatment of a number of foot and leg pathologies, including
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