The result of Achilles Tendon injuries

Symptoms and diagnosis for Achilles Tendon injuries
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By Orthopaedic and Neurology Clinic

Achilles tendon injury

What is define by an Achilles Tendon injuries?

The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in your body. It stretches from the bones of your heel to your calf muscles. You can feel it: a springy band of tissue at the back of your ankle and above your heel. It lets you point your toes toward the floor and raise up on your tiptoes.

It’s common for this tendon to get injured. It can be mild or moderate and feel like a burning pain or stiffness in that part of your leg. If the pain is severe, your Achilles tendon may be partly or completely torn.

If your Achilles tendon ruptures, you might hear a pop, followed by an immediate sharp pain in the back of your ankle and lower leg that is likely to affect your ability to walk properly. Surgery is often performed to repair the rupture. For many people, however, nonsurgical treatment works just as well.

What are some symptoms of an Achilles Tendon injuries?

Although it’s possible to have no signs or symptoms with an Achilles tendon rupture, most people have:

  • The feeling of having been kicked in the calf
  • Pain, possibly severe, and swelling near the heel
  • An inability to bend the foot downward or “push off” the injured leg when walking
  • An inability to stand on the toes on the injured leg
  • A popping or snapping sound when the injury occurs

“Chronic, long-lasting Achilles tendon disorders range from overuse injuries that cause inflammation or degeneration, to acute traumas such as Achilles tendon ruptures. You should see our doctor for severe ankle pain, especially if it follows an injury.”

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What types of diagnosis?

To make the right diagnosis, our Specialist will start with a physical exam. He may want to see you walk or run so they can look for problems that might have led to your injury.

He might also do something called the calf squeeze test. Our doctor will gently squeeze the calf muscle on your healthy leg. This will pull on the tendon and make your foot move. Next, they’ll do the same thing on your other leg. If your Achilles tendon is torn, your foot won’t move, because your calf muscle won’t be connected to your foot.

Our doctor may also test your range of motion to see if you can move your ankle the way you should. He may do imaging tests, such as X-ray or MRI. These tests can show what kind of tendon damage you have and help them decide on the best treatment for you.

Possible treatment methods?

Most people who have injuries and inflammation related to overuse of the tendon undergo nonsurgical treatments. These can include:

  • rest or other modification of activities
  • nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicine 
  • Practice stretching and strengthening exercises as recommended by our doctor or physical therapist

A nonsurgical approach might increase your chances of re-rupture and recovery can take longer, although recent studies indicate favorable outcomes in people treated non-surgically if they start rehabilitation with weight bearing early.

Since a lack of flexibility is a major cause of injury, proper stretching of the lower leg is the most basic way to prevent Achilles tendon strains or tears. As is the case with many other conditions injuries, it is important to stay as fit as possible during the healing and rehabilitation process. Swimming and other non-impact exercises are best, including bicycling, if that activity does not cause any pain (which would indicate a likelihood of reinjury). Running should be avoided at all costs until a rehabilitation specialist, trainer or doctor advises that sufficient recovery has taken place.

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