Tendinitis (also known as tendonitis) is inflammation or irritation of your tendons. Tendinitis is common in many different sports and even common for computer programmers that also perform repetitive tasks on a daily basis. You might have heard of tennis elbow or jumper’s knee; those terms refer to specific tendinitis problems. One of the most common tendinitis we see in our office is Achilles tendinitis. The Achilles tendon is the tissue that connects your calf muscle to your heel bone. Achilles tendonitis is an overuse injury that affects athletes, especially runners, basketball players, and football players.
Relief of tendinitis symptoms can be achieved in most cases with rest, pain medications, anti-inflammatory medications and physical therapy. If left untreated, or patients do not rest after diagnosis, this condition can become more severe. Severe cases of tendinitis could require surgery if the tendon ruptures or tears. Untreated tendinitis can also lead to tendinosis, which is the degeneration of the tendons. If you think you might have tendinitis, don’t delay treatment as it could worsen with time or lead to other serious foot problems. Our Palm Springs podiatrists and podiatrists at other South Florida locations can provide a diagnosis and discuss a comprehensive treatment plan with you. Call 561-793-6170 to schedule an appointment today or request an appointment online.
What is Tendinitis?
Tendinitis is characterized by pain caused by irritation and swelling of your tendons. Tendons are the fibrous cords that attach your muscles to your bones. Repetitive activities cause tendinitis in the area that is used most. Tendinitis causes pain and tenderness in the area that is affected, usually near the joints. Repetitive activities in sports or even your profession can cause tendinitis. Assembly line workers and computer programmers can experience tendonitis in the wrists or elbows and athletes often get tendinitis in their joints. One of the most common injuries we see in our office is Achilles tendonitis, which affects the ankles.
Symptoms of Tendinitis
Overworked tendons become inflamed and tender. Tendinitis symptoms include pain, especially when the affected joint is moved. In some cases the pain presents as a dull ache in the general area. Achilles tendonitis symptoms include pain running down the back of your calf to your ankle. With Achilles tendonitis acute pain can be felt after activities such as running, sprinting, or stair climbing.
Treatment of Tendinitis
The recommended treatment for all types of tendinitis is rest. In most cases, rest and over the counter pain medications such as ibuprofen or naproxen can help to alleviate the pain, with a podiatrist prescribing stronger pain medication in cases where necessary. Our podiatrists might recommend special strengthening and stretching exercises to help prevent the injury from returning. Physical therapy is sometimes recommended for rehabilitating a tendinitis injury or educating you to use your muscles properly if the tendinitis is a result of incorrect movements. In some cases, for treatment of Achilles tendinitis, the podiatrist might prescribe orthotic pads or braces to help relieve the strain and stress that is placed on your ankle. Tendons take a long time to heal, so a great deal of patience is required. It is very important to follow your doctor’s treatment advice because this condition can get worse if left untreated or if you continue the same repetitive activities even though you are in pain. This can lead to a tear or rip in the tendon, which requires surgery to repair the tendon. Tendinitis can also lead to tendinosis, which is a chronic condition characterized by tendons that have degenerated and broken down on a cellular level.
What should you expect when visiting the South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers for tendinitis or Achilles tendinitis? The South Florida Foot and Ankle Centers doctors’ first priority is to address your area of concern and make you feel comfortable. All of our doctors have specialized training and have a great deal of clinical experience so they are able to give you all of the information that you need to help you make an informed decision, understand the options, and be a part of the treatment plan. Our podiatrists diagnose tendinitis after a physical examination and talking to you about your family and medical history and listing your daily activities including work and sports. An x-ray or other tests might be taken if your doctor needs to see the condition of the tendons, muscles, and bones underneath the skin. You should be prepared to discuss the level of pain, when pain occurs, and how long you have been experiencing the pain.
YOUR NEXT STEPS
The podiatrists at South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers have extensive training and clinical experience when it comes to evaluating, diagnosing patients and providing treatment to relieve the heel pain and foot discomfort associated with both tendinitis and Achilles tendinitis. Remember that tendon injuries often can take quite a while to heal properly, but it is important to give yourself that time to heal so as to not cause further chronic damage.
Do these symptoms sound familiar? Contact South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers today for a comprehensive examination and treatment for tendinitis. Schedule an appointment with a podiatrist in Palm Springs or at any one of our six locations throughout Palm Beach. Call 561-793-6170 to speak with a staff member.