Tendons are long, tough cords of tissue that connect muscle to bone. The Achilles tendon, the largest and strongest tendon in your body, connects the heel bone to the calf muscle at the back of the heel to enable activities such as walking, running and jumping. These activities cause a significant amount of stress on the tendon. An overly stressed Achilles tendon can be subject to mild or serious injuries. If the injury is mild or moderate, it may be limited to burning or stiffness. If the pain is severe, the Achilles tendon may be partly torn or even completely ruptured.
These injuries tend to happen when you start moving suddenly, more so when you push off and lift your foot rather than when you land. For instance, a sprinter might get one at the start of a race as he surges off the starting block. The abrupt action can be too much for the tendon to handle. Men over 30 are particularly prone to Achilles tendon injuries.
Certain situations can make you more likely to have this kind of injury:
Equinus contracture is a condition in which the upward bending motion of the ankle joint is limited, lacking the flexibility to lift the top of the foot.
Tendinopathy and Tendonitis
Tendonitis is the resulting inflammation from tendinopathy (or tendinosis), a common overuse injury caused by frequent and long-term excessive compression.
A tendon rupture is a tear in the tendon connecting bone to muscle. This foot injury is painful and prevents the foot and ankle from moving freely.
A strain is a stretch or tear in the tissues making up a tendon or muscle. These injuries commonly occur while participating in sports.
Contact a doctor if you notice:
Bruises, or contusions, appear when the tiny blood vessels in the skin are damaged due to trauma. They are often visible by the discoloration they cause.
Gap In The Back Of The Ankle
Tendons are long, tough cords of tissue that connect your muscles to bone. When these are dislocated from their proper place, they leave a gap in the ankle.
Inflammation is a process by which the white blood cells, and substances they produce, protect us from an infection of foreign organisms, such as bacteria.
Numbness, or tingling, is often described as a “pins and needles” sensation. Although temporary, this may cause pain or discomfort.
Heel pain is pain localized in the back of the foot. Heel pain may be due to numerous conditions, including a stress fracture, tendonitis, arthritis, nerve irritation or, rarely, a cyst.
Pain In The Calf Or Leg
There are a variety of conditions that can affect the calf muscles, as well as the blood vessels and other structures around it, causing calf or leg pain.
Pain When Moving The Foot
If pain from moving the foot remains despite home treatments, it might be a symptom of a more serious underlying condition.
Popping Or Snapping Sensation
Popping or snapping sensation in the ankle or feet may indicate a condition called subluxation or dislocation of the tendons.
Based on your doctor’s evaluation of the severity of your injury, treatments may include:
If these treatments do not work, or if the injury is severe, surgery may be recommended. The type of surgery depends on the location and amount of damage to your tendon.
Achilles Tendinosis Surgery
When the Achilles tendon becomes degenerative and inflamed, it is called Achilles tendinosis.
Ankle arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that orthopaedic surgeons use to treat problems in the ankle joint.
A gastrocnemius release lengthens the gastrocnemius tendon. This is done to increase the flexibility of the calf muscle, which can decrease pressure at the front of the foot, improve function, and decrease deformity.
Minimally Invasive Surgery
In minimally invasive surgery, our doctors use a variety of techniques to operate with less damage to the body than with open surgery.
Tendon Repair Surgery
The tendon repair surgery is a surgery used to fix a damaged tendon. This surgery is often used to repair the Achilles tendon.
Tendon Transfer Procedures
Tendons are typically transferred in order to restore more normal movement to a foot and ankle that has lost function.
Regenerative Medicine Treatments
Regenerative medicine involves the delivery of growth factors to injured joints and tissues to promote the healing process.
RICE protocol is a simple self-care technique used to reduce swelling, ease pain, and speed up healing of an injured muscle, tendon, or ligament.