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If you have pain in the back of your heel during or immediately after physical activity, a likely culprit is Achilles tendinitis. This is an especially common “overuse” injury – one that affects many athletes and individuals who lead active lifestyles.
The core issue here is that an overworked Achilles tendon has become inflamed. And while this is a common problem, it’s also a treatable one.
If you – or any active family members – are suffering from this painful condition, we can help.
Dr. Leibovitz has more than thirty years of experience in providing treatment plans to get athletes back in the game – and he can do the same for you. If you’re ready to schedule an appointment, just give us a call at (317) 545-0505 or request your visit online.
How do you know if you have Achilles tendinitis?
As noted, the main symptom of Achilles tendinitis is heel pain in the upper back area of the heel. This pain can extend up to just below the heart-shaped calf muscle.
Additionally, you can also have swelling and limited range of motion (when flexing your foot).
When you first start walking after sitting for a while, you may experience tenderness in the area. You can feel for this by running your fingers down both sides of the tendon:
- If there is no change in the size of your Achilles, that’s a good sign.
- If you notice swelling, a distinct deficit, or a small depression you have significant problems, especially if the deficit is large. (In that case, you may actually have a tendon tear – which is a critical issue.)
There’s a sheath around the tendon that provides lubrication and allows it to glide freely. This sheath can also become inflamed.
You can tell if it is when you run your finger down the tendon and find a long, extended area of tenderness. It can also feel spongy or “crunchy” with movement or pressure.
If you experience any of this, you’re looking at a sign of chronic irritation. And that is a serious problem.
If there is tenderness in your calf muscle (or in the junction between the muscle and tendon), this is a muscular injury – and not Achilles tendinitis – and it should go away with rest in 2 to 4 days.