ValleyOrtho’s experienced and compassionate team of physicians treat a wide range of foot and ankle injuries, including Achilles tendonitis.
The Achilles tendon connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. Overuse of the Achilles tendon may cause the tendon to become irritated and painful.
Achilles tendonitis is inflammation of this tendon. It is a common sports injury that is related to running and jumping, but it can happen to anyone who puts a lot of stress on their feet with prolonged standing and walking. If one does not get treatment for Achilles tendinitis, the problem can become chronic (long-term) and make it difficult to walk due to severe pain.
- Sudden increase in activities or training
- An excessive amount of hill running or sprint workouts
- Running/walking with improper footwear
- Poor foot/ankle control
- Running on uneven or banked surfaces
- Tight calf or hamstring muscles
- Tenderness from 1-2 inches above the heel to the heel itself
- Possible swelling or thickening of the Achilles tendon
- Pain or stiffness when getting out of bed in the morning
- Pain or stiffness at the beginning of activity that decreases during activity
- Pain may be constant throughout and after activity in advanced cases
The physicians at ValleyOrtho will conduct a thorough history and physical exam. An MRI scan may be used to check for signs of damage to the tendon.
In many cases, surgery is not needed to treat Achilles tendinitis. Effective nonsurgical treatments include:
- Modified activity
- Referral to a physical therapist
- Adjustment to footwear: orthotics, heel lifts or new shoes
- Anti-inflammatory medication
- Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections
Advanced Surgical Options
If pain persists or if the tendon is torn, surgical intervention may be recommended for those who are young to middle-aged and active. The ruptured tendon is sewn together during surgery. Afterward, the leg is immobilized for a period of time. Physical therapy will be necessary as the tendon heals. Return to activity is expected in about 4 to 6 months, however, it can take up to a year to return to sports.
ValleyOrtho’s innovative treatment, advanced surgical technology and compassionate care help our patient’s return to their active lifestyles.