Foot and Ankle Tendonitis
Tendons are the cord-like bands of connective tissue that connect your muscles to bone. If the tendon is over worked or worked in the wrong way tiny tears can occur, damaging the tendon and causing inflammation. If the area is repetitively irritated the continued inflammation is considered tendonitis. This can happen anywhere in your body, but a common area is the foot and ankle including your Achilles tendon and Posterior Tibial Tendon.
Symptoms of Foot and Ankle Tendonitis:
Symptoms include pain, swelling and even stiffness. A sharp, burning, or aching pain in the area of the tendon is most common, but if it worsens the pain can spread. The pain is usually sharper when movement first starts, but subsides with continued movement usually returning if you’re on your feet for long periods of time. Swelling usually occurs after a few weeks of minor symptoms, causing more intense pain and restriction of activity.
Causes of Foot and Ankle Tendonitis:
Tendonitis occurs when the tendon is repetitively overworked. High impact physical activity such as sports and injury can cause foot and ankle tendonitis. Improper foot alignment is one of the most common causes of chronic foot and ankle tendonitis. For example, when the joints of our arches flatten too much, this will increase the demand for our arch tendons to try and reduce flattening.
Common Types of Foot and Ankle Tendonitis:
Achilles Tendonitis is one of the most common types of foot and ankle tendonitis. Symptoms typically include pain in the back of the heel and or ankle. This pain can also radiate up the back of the calf. The pain is usually felt when walking or running and a visible thickening of the tendon can occur. Learn more about Achilles tendonitis, causes, symptoms and treatments.
Posterior Tibial Tendonitis occurs along the inside of your foot and ankle, causing pain on the inner side of your foot. This tendon is critical in maintaining your arch. If this tendon tears, the arch will completely collapse. Pain will be felt with walking, high impact activity, and going down stairs.
Peroneal Tendonitis causes pain when standing or pushing off your foot. It occurs in the peroneal tendons that run down the outside of your ankle across the bottom of your foot, resulting in pain on the back and outer side of your ankle and foot.
Treatment for foot and ankle tendonitis aims at reducing the pain, swelling and dysfunction caused by the condition. That means it is vital to rest the foot to allow recovery and prevent further damage. Rest, icing, compression, elevation and even anti-inflammatory medication may help.
Your podiatrist will help you address what might be aggravating the tendon so you can avoid those activities, start various strengthening exercises, and in the case of abnormal foot structure, look into getting custom orthotics from Alberta Family Podiatry in Calgary.