Achilles tendon injuries or, worse yet, Achilles tendon ruptures, can occur for those who engage in athletic activities or due to accidents. The Achilles tendon is a fibrous band of tissue linking the calf muscles to the heel and when it experiences too much stress and pressure it can become inflamed, swollen and irritated - causing tendonitis. When Achilles tendon tears result in complete or partial breaks this is called a rupture, which will require immediate medical attention.
At the Associated Foot Care Clinic in Culver City, Dr. J. Leonard Knudson, DPM offers a variety of treatments for Achilles tendon injuries and Achilles tendon ruptures to address the pain, help the damaged tissue heal, and restore patients' comfort so they can back on their feet.
Achilles Injuries: Causes and Treatments at Associated Foot Care in Culver City
Tendonitis can be caused by overuse or damage to the Achilles tendon, which will result in pain running down the back of the leg and around the heel. There are two types of tendonitis:
Non-insertional Achilles tendonitis: Small tears in the middle of the tendon fibers start breaking the tendon down, causing pain and swelling.
Insertional Achilles tendonitis: Damage in the area where the tendon meets the heel bone, often causing the formation of bone spurs.
Tendon ruptures on the other hand are due to complete or partial breaks of the tendon fibers. This can come with a popping sound from the back of the heel or calf.
Treatment will depend on the patient's age, activity level and the injury's severity. For younger and more active people, surgery to repair completely ruptured Achilles tendon is often opted so they can return to their active lifestyles. For older patients, non-surgical treatment is often chosen.
Non-surgical treatment involves interventions such as:
Resting the tendon by using crutches
Applying ice to the area
Taking over-the-counter pain relievers
Immobilizing the ankle for several weeks
A non-surgical approach may have increased chances of re-rupture and recovery can take longer but it avoids the risks associated with surgery like infection.
Surgical intervention entails an operation where an incision is made in the back of the lower leg to access the torn tendon and stitch it back together. If the torn tissue has been damaged severely, other tendons may be utilized to reinforce it. This process has the risk of infection and nerve damage.
After non-surgical or surgical treatment, physical therapy is necessary in order to rehabilitate the injured limb and strengthen the leg muscles as well as the healing Achilles tendon. Most patients will return to their previous activity level in four to six months but strength and stability training must continue as issues may persist for up to a year.
Schedule an appointment with Dr. J. Leonard Knudson - a Culver City Foot Doctor for treatment.
Dr. J. Leonard Knudson is a Foot and Ankle Surgeon located in Culver City and near West Los Angeles. We also tend to patients from nearby - UCLA, Brentwood, Beverly Hills, Marina Del Rey, Venice, Santa Monica and the West Los Angeles area.
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