Achilles tendon Sheffield Rotherham Doncaster Worksop

Achilles Tendon Problems

About the Achilles Tendon

The Achilles Tendon is a large tendon that connects your calf muscle to your heel bone. The tendon runs from your heel to halfway up your lower leg where it joins to the muscle and is the largest and strongest tendon in your body. The Achilles tendon is necessary for normal walking as it helps to lift your heel off the ground. We can treat problems of the Achilles tendon in Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster and Worksop.

The most common injuries to the Achilles comes from overloading the tendon, such as starting a new active hobby or having a labouring job that involves a lot of lifting, or from a lot of repetitive movements such as going on a walking holiday. Sporting activities are another common cause of Achilles tendon issues accounting for about a third of all injuries.

What are the types of problems that can affect the Achilles tendon?

There are several conditions that can cause pain in your Achilles tendon and range in severity.

Tendonitis

Tendonitis is inflammation of the tendon. This is often due to repetitive movements that irritate the soft tissues causing them to become inflamed. If Achilles tendonitis is treated it can lead to tendinopathy.

Tendinopathy/Tendinosis

Tendonopathy, or tendinosis, is when the tendon has begun to deteriorate and develops tiny tears. Ongoing stress on the tendon prevents it from healing itself.

Tendon Rupture

A partial or full tear of the Achilles tendon is a less common injury. A rupture is more likely among sportspeople in their 30s to 50s. When a tendon is torn or ruptured a cracking or popping sound is sometimes heard.

The symptoms of Achilles tendon problems include:

  • A stiff or painful lower leg that may hurt to move or put weight on your foot
  • Swelling and tenderness in the calf muscle or the back of the heel
  • Bruising around the heel
  • Walking with a limp

Symptoms will vary in severity depending on which tendon injury you have. For example, you may be able to raise up onto your toes with tendonitis or tendinosis (albeit painfully) but not with a tendon rupture.

What are the treatments for Achilles tendon injuries?

Depending on how serious your Achilles tendon condition is, recovery can take several weeks and maybe even months. Being overweight, inactive, smoking or having diabetes may all affect your ability to recover, so addressing your overall wellbeing will also help with your recovery.

  • Ice therapy – to reduce swelling and inflammation.
  • Rest/change activity – avoid the activity that caused the injury until the pain subsides.
  • Use orthotics – insoles that raise the heel can relieve stress on the Achilles.
  • Physiotherapy – strengthening and stretching exercises that keep the leg and ankle mobile and flexible.
  • Brace or Cast – a rigid boot or plaster cast is used to immobilise the foot for helping to heal a ruptured Achilles tendon.

Surgery is also an option for treatment damaged Achilles tendons. But your suitability for surgery will depend on your age, activity levels and previous history of Achilles problems. Book your treatment for problems of the Achilles tendon in Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster or Worksop. You can also follow us on social media. 

 

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