Achilles tendon is the tendon which is attached from calf muscles to the heel bone. When there is sudden increase in intensity of physical training or excessive training load on the calf muscles, the tendon may not be able to adapt to the increased demand. This can lead to micro-tears and degeneration of the tendon, which may lead to Achilles tendinopathy.
You might experience pain, swelling and stiffness around the back of the heel where the tendon is. Pain is often worse when walking up hill or squatting.
Allow yourself a period of rest from physical activity that triggers or aggravates the pain. Apply ice or cold therapy in the early stages, particularly when it is very painful as cold therapy can reduce pain and inflammation. Stretching the muscles of the lower leg and wearing good quality supportive shoes appropriate for your sport will also help.
The aim of the treatment is to reduce strain on the tendon. A sports physiotherapist or podiatrist can identify reasons of strain by conducting biomechanical examinations while prescribing specific exercises to strengthen and stretch the calf and other leg muscles, helping to prevent recurrence of the pain.
A podiatrist may prescribe or recommend foot orthotics for certain cases.
With difficult cases, other treatment modalities like Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT) and Autologous Conditioned Plasma (ACP) injection might be offered by your doctor.
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