Achilles Tendon injuries can be disturbing to mobility since it is the biggest tendon in the body. The Achilles tendon joins the heel bone to the calf muscle and plays a major role in the movement of the feet. This tendon assists the heel with raising itself off the floor during walking, as well as pushing up the toes and lifting the rear of the heel. This tendon can become inflamed and result in tendonitis or even rupture from trauma. When this tendon ruptures, it typically occurs right above the heel bone.
Factors that lead to the increased risk of this condition occurring include older age, poor physical shape, overdoing exercise, corticosteroid injections, or a certain class of antibiotics. The pain that is experienced when this tendon ruptures is immediate and radiates from the heel to the back of the leg. The Achilles tendon may also partially rupture when the tendon undergoes a semi-tear. After this injury occurs, activities such as running, walking up a flight of stairs or using the toes will become difficult due to the calf muscles not being able to assist the heal.
Treatment for this condition includes:
- Anti-inflammatories to alleviate swelling.
- Medications to reduce pain.
- Getting plenty of rest.
- Keeping the foot immobile during the initial phase of recovery.
- Ice therapy to reduce inflammation.
- Physical therapy to stretch the tendon as it gains strength.
- Use of arch supports, casts or braces.
- Surgery may be required to repair injured tendons when other methods are unsuccessful. This procedure will also be aimed at increasing blood supply to the injured area with older patients.
This condition can be painful and require long recovery times to fully heal. At Stavros O. Alexopoulos, DPM, located in Chicago, Illinois, our foot doctor Stavros O. Alexopoulos, DPM will use every possible method available to help your Achilles tendon recover from a rupture and provide feedback to make sure it doesn’t happen again. Make an appointment today by calling our office at (773) 561-8100 and check out our Patient Education Library for more information.