RS Podiatry Clinic

Achilles Tendinopathy

Achilles Tendonitis is a common condition that causes pain and inflammation in the Achilles tendon, the large tendon that connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. This condition is often caused by overuse, such as from running or jumping, or from a sudden increase in physical activity. In some cases, Achilles Tendonitis can be caused by improper footwear, foot structure, or tight calf muscles.

Orthotics are a common treatment for Achilles Tendonitis. Orthotics are shoe inserts that are designed to provide additional support and cushioning to the feet, helping to reduce pressure on the Achilles tendon. They can also help correct any abnormal foot structure or gait patterns that may be contributing to the development of Achilles Tendonitis.

Shockwave therapy is another treatment option for Achilles Tendonitis. This therapy uses high-energy sound waves to stimulate healing in the affected area. The sound waves help to increase blood flow to the tendon, which can promote the growth of new tissue and reduce pain and inflammation.

A running biomechanics analysis can be an effective tool in identifying potential causes of Achilles Tendonitis in runners. This analysis focuses on assessing the runner’s gait, stride length, foot strike, and joint alignment to determine if any imbalances or abnormalities exist that may be contributing to the development of the condition. The findings from the analysis can be used to develop a personalized treatment plan, which may include orthotics, stretching, strengthening exercises, and modifications to running form and technique. By addressing these underlying issues, the risk of developing Achilles Tendonitis can be significantly reduced, and overall running performance can be improved. In addition, a running biomechanics analysis can help identify other potential issues that may impact foot health and running performance, making it an invaluable tool for all runners.

Other conservative treatments for Achilles Tendonitis include rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may also be used to reduce pain and inflammation.

In severe cases of Achilles Tendonitis, surgery may be required to repair the damaged tendon. However, this is typically only recommended if conservative treatments have been unsuccessful.

Prevention is key when it comes to Achilles Tendonitis. This includes wearing appropriate footwear that provides adequate support and cushioning, stretching before and after exercise, and gradually increasing physical activity over time. It is also important to listen to your body and rest when necessary to avoid overuse injuries.

If you are experiencing symptoms of Achilles Tendonitis, it is important to seek treatment from a qualified podiatrist. They can help diagnose the condition and develop a treatment plan tailored to your individual needs. With proper treatment, the symptoms of Achilles Tendonitis can be effectively managed, allowing you to resume your daily activities without discomfort.

This article is not intended as advice and therefore should not be taken as advice. Each patient is assessed and treated on an individual basis.

Alternative diagnosis: Achilles Tendon pain, Achilles Tendonitis, heel pain, Achilles Bursitis,

Symptoms: A dull ache or sharp pain typically felt towards the back of the heel or along the tendon, a feeling of tightness, inflammation. Feeling of a thickening or lump. Can be worse when ‘getting going’ then ease-off e.g. at the beginning of a run.

Contributing Factors: Biomechanical ‘issues’, lack of ankle movement, running form, training error, excessive increase in activity and intensity, hill running, muscle weaknesses, muscle tightness, BMI and lifestyle choice, footwear choices, overuse, neural involvement, sports, Inflammatory Arthropathy, repetitive activities e.g. jogging or jumping.

Treatment Considerations: Altering training programme and managing tendon load, Shockwave Therapy, gradual return to running programme, orthotics, a targeted tendon loading programme, foam rolling, taping, clinical gait analysis, footwear analysis and biomechanical correction, consistent following of advice, and more