Achilles was a famous Greek legend who was in the Trojan war, felled by a shot to his heel. Owing to the myth, the Achilles tendon is a band of tissue that runs down the back of the lower leg. The cord connects the calf muscle to the heel bone; hence it is also known as the heel cord. When you walk, the tendon helps lifts the heel of the ground, hence is an important band of muscle for mobility.
Tendonitis versus Tendinosis
Tendonitis or sometimes Tendinitis, typically refers to inflammation of the tendon. While the response is typically temporary and rarely cause too much pain; continuous inflammation can lead to a degeneration of the tendon.
When the tendons suffer from constant inflammation and injury, microscopic tears and degeneration will occur. Tendinosis is a common problem in joggers and jumpers, due to the repetitive damage to the tissues. In rare cases, the tendon may rupture due to chronic tendinosis.
Aside from athletes who places stress on the tendon regularly, other individuals who are at risk include labourer. Weekend warriors, people who participate in athletic activities infrequently are also prone to suffer from Achilles tendonitis or tendinosis. A tight hamstring and calf muscles can also lead to an injury at the back of the foot.
But you can also develop problems if you wear shoes that do not provide enough support for your feet, especially if you are an over- pronator. If you wear high heels, or have a habit of walking on your toes, then you are more likely to suffer from a painful tendon.
Those who have high foot arch, or flat feet are also at risk. As the muscles are under strain to support the muscles and bones, there is an increased chance for the tendon to inflame and degrade if proper care is not taken. Without enough stability, the tendons have to work harder to lift the leg when you walk or run.
A tell-tale sign that you may have Achilles tendonitis maybe the burning pain when you start an activity such as walking or running. You will feel slightly better during the activity but you dread the time after you are done with the exercise. The back of your foot may feel stiff in the morning, or at the beginning of an exercise.
Aside from the pain and stiffness, you may feel weak in the feet, where the tendon fails to support your weight. When you use the tendon, you may experience a crunch and more pain.
What Can You Do?
It is important to book a visit to your doctor or podiatrist if you suspect that you have this condition. We at Adelaide Heel Pain Clinic have an extracorporeal shockwave machine, and research shows that it helps with 75% of the cases.
Stop putting up with the pain, we can help make you feel better today.