If you have searing pain in your lower leg or the back of your heel, it could be Achilles tendonitis. At Gelbmann Podiatry, David Gelbmann, DPM, and Ramsha Tanwir, DPM, use state-of-the-art equipment and remarkable treatment skills to start your healing immediately. There are two offices in the Near Southside and West Town areas of Chicago, Illinois, so reach out to the office nearest you by phone or book an appointment online today.
Achilles tendonitis, a leading cause of foot and ankle pain, is a condition in which your Achilles tendon becomes severely inflamed. This inflammation causes discomfort or pain in your lower calf and back part of your heel.
You can also develop tendonitis in your posterior tibial tendon on the inside of your foot, in the peroneal tendon on your outer foot, or in the flexor tendon that stabilizes your toes.
Achilles tendonitis is usually related to overuse, like working out harder or longer than usual. Lack of warm-up exercise, such as a stretching routine, before you work out, may also contribute to Achilles tendonitis.
Poor form, which means using improper techniques during exercise, can unnecessarily stress your Achilles tendon, so it may also contribute. Certain people, including those with flat feet, arthritis, and naturally short or tight tendons, have a higher risk of developing Achilles tendonitis.
The hallmark symptom is pain where the tendon enters your heel. Often, Achilles tendonitis pain is most severe in the morning and usually intensifies with activity.
You may also have tendon thickening and swelling. The swelling can grow worse during the day as you move around and then diminish slightly at night when you're off your feet.
If your symptoms don't improve with rest and topical ice application, or if you're having trouble walking, schedule an appointment at Gelbmann Podiatry right away.
Achilles tendonitis could become a far more serious issue like Achilles tendon rupture if you don't get treatment.
Gelbmann Podiatry starts with an accurate diagnosis using the on-site digital X-rays, ultrasounds, and 3D foot scanning equipment. Through these diagnostics, your podiatrist gets a crystal-clear view of your Achilles tendon so they can prescribe the ideal treatment.
Your podiatrist relieves your immediate pain with oral medication, immobilization, custom orthotic inserts, and other conservative care. For severe pain, you may need pain-relieving injections containing anti-inflammatory and cortisone medications.
Often, the Gelbmann Podiatry team prescribes special exercises that strengthen the calf muscles, which reduces Achilles tendon strain.
In rare cases of severe Achilles tendonitis, some patients need surgery to repair a badly damaged tendon. The Gelbmann Podiatry doctors perform foot and ankle surgery at Northwestern Medicine® when necessary.
If you think you might have Achilles tendonitis, don’t wait for it to worsen. Call Gelbmann Podiatry or schedule an appointment online today.