Treating Achilles Tendinitis
We will typically be able to diagnose Achilles tendinitis easily during a standard exam. We may ask you about your activities and when pain tends to be at its worst. In some cases, we might order an imaging test such as an X-ray or ultrasound to get a clearer look at the situation and rule out any other types of problems.
Once we have a clear diagnosis, we can recommend a treatment plan to aid in your recovery. Parts of a treatment plan might include:
Remember the RICE method:
REST – Do not put any pressure on your tendon until you can walk normally. If the tendon is not put under any additional strain, it will heal faster. If you have to move while your tendon is being restrained, your doctor might suggest you use crutches. Give your body a chance to heal itself first.
- ICE – Place ice in a plastic bag and wrap it in cloth. The bag can be held on the tendon for 20 minutes. After that, take it off and let the tendon heat up again. Ice often reduces inflammation and swelling.
- COMPRESSION – This will help prevent further swelling. You should not wrap or tie anything around your tendon as this can restrict blood flow.
- Elevation – Lift your foot higher than your chest. This way your foot is higher than the level of your heart so blood returns to your heart and helps keep the swelling down. It is easy to do this by lying down on your back and placing your foot on a pillow, or any other elevated surface.
If the RICE method doesn’t provide relief, you should consider:
- Anti-inflammatory pain-relieving medications
- Specific stretches and exercises can help condition your Achilles tendon, calf muscles, and other tissues connected to the injured area.
- The use of custom orthotics to shift excess weight and pressure away from the injury
In cases of severe tears, or if conservative treatments are not aiding in recovery, surgery might then be considered. However, this is a rare occurrence.
Get Back to What You Love Doing
You should expect a lengthy recovery if you injure your Achilles tendon. However, our experienced team of experts will help you get back on your feet as quickly as possible. We’ll help you get back to doing the things you love.