Dr. Timothy Young, a Board-Certified Foot Surgeon Discusses Achilles Tendon Problems

Dr. Timothy Young, a Board-Certified Foot Surgeon Discusses Achilles Tendon Problems

achilles tendon rupture diagram

Dr. Timothy Young, a Board-Certified Foot Surgeon Discusses Achilles Tendon Problems

Achilles tendon problems can be quite different from other tendon conditions or pathology. There can be an acute inflammation or an acute strain, or there may be a chronic condition. Sometimes there is a low-grade condition smoldering along that the individual is not aware of and finally it passes a threshold of involvement that creates symptoms and pain. There is the main central portion of the Achilles tendon which is considered the watershed region of the tendon primarily because there is not as much blood supply to this area.

Then there is the outer synovial sheath adjacent to the tendon or the paratendon. There is no typical tendon sheath with the Achilles tendon but rather a paratenon which is a lining around the tendon. This can become inflamed. This would be considered paratendinitis or paratendinosis. And finally, there is the insertion of the tendon that can become degenerative and calcified. In addition, there can be a partial tear of the tendon or a total rupture. Therefore, there can be different approaches to treatment based upon which problem is encountered with the Achilles tendon.

There may be different causes of the specific condition which can help to dictate which treatments to focus on. In general, addressing a tight calf muscle is appropriate whether it is stretching the use of a night splint or even a gastroc recession or lengthening. Other general treatments include home physical therapy, prescription orthotics and addressing biomechanics, KT tape and icing, shockwave therapy. For some individuals' surgical treatment is appropriate.

If you are experiencing foot or ankle pain, give us a call at 425-391-8666 or make an appointment online today. 
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