Achilles tendinopathy is an overuse injury of the achilles usually caused by repetitive action or load. The achilles is a strong collagenous structure which attaches the calf muscles to the heel. The achilles tendon is a big contributor in a number of activities such as walking, running and jumping.
Symptoms you may be experiencing:
- Pain, stiffness and loss of strength in the calf/achilles.
- There may be some pain when undertaking activity. However, it often warms up.
- You may have more pain and stiffness during the night or when you get up in the morning.
- The area may be red, hot and swollen.
- You may notice a clicking sound or grinding sensation when using the tendon.
Initial care - things to try at home:
- Reduce your exercise load (don’t stop completely).
- Ice your achilles.
- Foam roll your calves for 2-3 minutes a day.
- Perform isometric heel raises (Stand up on tip toes and hold for 5 sets of 45 seconds, 3 times a day).
- Check to see that your footwear is not worn out.
Our approach to solving your problem:
- Clinical assessment involves palpation of the achilles tendon as well as some other clinical assessments such as a taking a detailed history, active and passive testing.
- An extensive rehabilitation program consisting of exercises to build your tendon’s capacity to take more load, be pain free and stronger than when you first came in.
- Shockwave therapy to help increase blood flow to the area to enhance healing and depletion of substance P which is responsible for pain.
- Taping to help offload and support the tendon during your chosen activity.
- If taping is successful, the use of foot orthoses can help keep your feet and achilles feeling fresh at the end of the day rather than tired and fatigued.
- Finding the root cause of the problem by undertaking a biomechanical assessment and footwear assessment to assess whether a foot orthotic is indicated or if there are other factors contributing to your pain.
- It may be necessary to be referred for scans to rule out more sinister pathologies.
We will then create a management plan specific to you to:
- help settle the pain;
- identify biomechanical dysfunction;
- reduce inflammation;
- strengthen the area;
- address the causative factors to prevent reocurrence;
- get you back to the activities that you enjoy;
- keep you active and happy!
If you would like help from one of our Podiatrists to recover from your Achilles Tendinopathy, please give us a call on 9894 2463 or book online to make an appointment.