People who participate in sporting activities may experience Achilles tendon injuries. If it is torn, surgery may be necessary to repair the tendon, and a lengthy recovery period is often needed. The Achilles tendon is located in the back of the calf, and its purpose is to connect the heel to the calf muscles. It may become injured if sudden jumping or sprinting is performed. This may occur if certain sports are played that can include volleyball and basketball. There are existing conditions which could weaken the Achilles tendon. These can consist of diabetes, specific forms of arthritis that can include gout, or if certain medications are taken. The symptoms that are often associated with this condition can include difficulty in walking, and there may be severe pain while attempting to point and flex the foot. If you have endured an Achilles tendon injury, it is advised to speak with a podiatrist who can guide you toward the proper treatment.
Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
What Is the Achilles Tendon?
The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.
What Are the Symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?
There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.
Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms
- Dull to severe pain
- Increased blood flow to the tendon
- Thickening of the tendon
- Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
- Total immobility
Treatment and Prevention
Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:
- Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
- Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses
If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs. Read more about Achilles Tendon Injuries