Achilles Tendinitis & Repair in Kansas City
The Achilles tendon is a band of thick tissue that connects the calf muscles on the back of the lower leg to the heel bone.
When the tendon is overused, it can become irritated and lead to inflammation of the tissue, known as Achilles Tendonitis. Tendonitis commonly occurs with a sudden change in intensity, type, or duration of exercise. It can also occur due to improper shoe wear. Chronic tendonitis causes repetitive micro-traumas that weaken the tissue over time, which can lead to a tear in the tendon. It is also possible to have a traumatic tear of the tendon, which is more common in sports with repetitive jumping or cutting. Depending on the severity of the tear it may require surgical repair to heal.
Symptoms of an Achilles Tendonitis or rupture can be felt in the back of the lower leg or where it attaches at the heel. Symptoms are common after prolonged periods of activity, typically running or jumping. People with naturally flat arches are more prone to Achilles tendonitis.
Pain and Symptoms of Achilles Tendinitis may include:
- Pain in the back of the lower leg or at the heel
- Increased pain during or after activity
- Morning pain or stiffness
- Calf tightness
- Hearing or feeling a “pop” during injury
- Difficulty pushing off on injured leg
- Difficulty standing up onto toes
Treatments for Achilles Tendonitis
Treatment for Achilles Tendonitis includes soft tissue therapy to the surrounding area, including Graston, Active Release Technique, and Dry Needling. Your functional movement will be assessed to determine what areas need to be strengthened and retrained to improve movement patterns and take strain off of the Achilles tendon. Our providers at F.I.T. are also trained to fit for custom orthotics, which may be necessary for those with naturally flat feet.
Treatment for a surgical repair will begin with management of pain and swelling while you are non-weight bearing. You will then progress to passive movement and active movement of the ankle. Once that has been achieved, we will begin strengthening of the ankle and lower extremity and gradually progress to functional and sport specific movements. Typical return to high physical demands is approximately 9 months.
Our Treatment Process
F.I.T. Muscle & Joint Clinic utilizes various soft tissue techniques, including A.R.T., Graston, and Dry Needling to restore the proper motion, texture, and tightness to the muscles, fascia, ligaments, nerves, and tendons to eliminate the patient’s pain and musculoskeletal dysfunction.
You will also be taken through a comprehensive movement assessment to determine what corrective exercises are needed to return to full function.
Possible Treatments for Achilles Tendonitis
Active Release Technique
Active Release Technique (A.R.T) is one of the leading soft tissue therapies for the treatment of muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves.Learn More
Physical Therapy Rehabilitation Exercise that favors quality movements over quantity of reps is key to restoring proper function.Learn More
The physical therapy Graston technique is one of the leading instrument assisted soft tissue therapies for the treatment of muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves.Learn More
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some common Achilles Tendonitis exercises?
Common exercises for Achilles Tendonitis are eccentric heel raises, calf stretching, and ankle strengthening. A functional assessment should also be done to determine other areas that may also be contributing to dysfunction of the lower extremity.
I have insertional achilles tendonitis. Can physical therapy help?
Achilles tendonitis is often very successfully treated conservatively with physical therapy. A comprehensive assessment will be done to determine the best course of treatment that will involve soft tissue mobilizations, joint mobilizations, and corrective exercises.
Can you provide an achilles tendonitis brace?
We do not provide braces for Achilles tendonitis. However, our providers are trained in taping techniques that are highly effective for managing pain. We are also trained in fitting for custom orthotics, which can significantly improve foot mechanics with weight bearing activities. If we think a brace is necessary, we can offer recommendations for brands/stores that we have had success with in the past.
Can physical therapy help with achilles tendon pain?
Yes. Soft tissue techniques including A.R.T., Graston, and Dry Needling are all highly effective ways to treat Achilles tendon pain when complemented with corrective exercise.
I have achilles tendon pain when walking. Should I come to F.I.T.?
Yes! Walking should not be a consistently painful task. At F.I.T. we can assess your walking pattern and other dysfunctional movements to determine what are the proper interventions to decrease your pain and improve function. Our soft tissue techniques are highly effective for addressing painful tissues.
Tell us about your pain.
Take a couple of minutes to tell us about your symptoms and pain areas. Prefer to chat over the phone? Call us for a free phone consultation.
Visit your local F.I.T. Physical Therapist
Meet the team at any of our 5 locations: Lee’s Summit, Crossroads, Blue Valley, Overland Park & Shawnee.