Achilles Tendinitis

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Achilles pathologies are one of the most common reasons patient’s will present to a podiatrist.

These problems can involve pain/injury of the posterior heel (achilles attachment), achilles tendon itself and sometimes the calf muscle bellies.

These pathologies are often managed with temporary offloading (i.e. in-shoe padding or offloading), exercises management/prescription and shockwave therapy.

Injuries to the achilles or surrounding structures can be caused by:

Overuse:

  • Frequent movement patterns that place high amounts of load on the achilles tendon (common in athletes).
  • Longer hours on the feet at work.
  • Sudden increases in exercise.
  • Incorrect footwear can result in some people placing extra strain or their achilles.

Acute Injury:

  • Traumatic events, typically involving a strong and sudden stretch on the calves and achilles.

Growth in children:

  • Tightness in the calf muscles of an active and growing child can sometimes cause irritation of the growth plate. This pathology is often treated similarly to adult achilles pathology.

These pathologies are often managed with temporary offloading (i.e. in-shoe padding or offloading), exercises management/prescription, taping and shockwave therapy.

Treatment Options

Shockwave Therapy

SHOCKWAVE THERAPY is proven to increase the healing properties of the tissues and decrease the levels of pain within the Achilles region.  This treatment is very successful and can speed up your recovery. 

It is not indicated for everyone, however your Podiatrist may recommend this therapy as part of your treatment pathway.

Heel Raisers and Why They Can Help

A heel raise the the most common form of management for achilles pathology. This piece of EVA, placed underneath the shoe innersoles, lifts the heel in the shoe to shorten the functional length of the achilles. This reduces the peak stretch and strain on the muscle/tendon whilst it is injured.

Rehab for Achilles Tendinitis

Exercises place load on our muscles and tendons. Correct loading of injured tissues is ESSENTIAL to effective achilles/calf rehabilitation. Based on your presentation, your podiatrist will prescribe different exercises targeting different areas and types of muscle/tendon loading. Generally, more gentle and conservative exercises will be used, with more demanding exercises gradually being incorporated based on your presentation at each visit.

Strapping

STRAPPING is a simple and effective management modality for achilles/calf injuries. The goal of this treatment is generally to reduce movement at a joint or reduce the strain on a muscle/tendon. This assists in getting patients through their day to day tasks whilst they rehabilitate their injury. Your podiatrist will use different tapes and different techniques based on your individual presentation.