Symptoms of Achilles Tendinitis:
- Pain and stiffness along the Achilles tendon in the morning
- Pain along the tendon or back of the heel that worsens with activity
- Severe pain the day after exercising
- Thickening of the tendon
- Bone spur (insertional tendinitis)
- Swelling that is present all the time and gets worse throughout the day with activity
If you have an Achilles tendon rupture, you might feel a pop or snap, accompanied by a sharp pain behind your ankle. You are likely to have difficulty walking properly. If you have ruptured your Achilles tendon then surgery is likely to be the best treatment option.
Achilles Tendinosis and Achilles Tendinitis Treatment
Anti-inflammatory Medications – NSAIDS like ibuprofen are often prescribed to help manage the pain and inflammation.
Corticosteroids – Steroids are often recommended when patients do not respond to NSAID treatment. They are often most effective when injected directly into the inflamed and swollen area.
Physical Therapy – Physiotherapy is a great way to stretch and strengthen the Achilles tendon. A good physical therapist will also teach the patient techniques which give better foot support during exercise (taping, wrapping, etc…).
Custom Orthotics – assistive devices and insoles can be used to cushion and cradle the arch of the foot during the healing process.
Shock Wave Therapy – This is the newest form of treatment and uses concentrated sound waves to stimulate healing in the affected area. This form of treatment is reserved for heel pain that is unresponsive to other forms of treatment.
Achilles Tendon Surgery:
Surgery can be done to remove hardened fibrous tissue and repair any small tendon tears as a result of repetitive use injuries. This approach can also be used to help prevent an Achilles tendon rupture. If your Achilles tendon has already ruptured or torn, Achilles tendon surgery can be used to reattach the ends of the torn tendon. This approach is more thorough and definitive compared to non surgical treatment options discussed above. Surgical reattachment of the tendon also minimizes the change of re-rupturing the Achilles tendon.