Updated: Sep 30, 2019
Cause: Overuse, trauma, shoes with minimal support, foot deformity.
Appearance: Pain with flexion or extension of the ankle (plantarflexion and dorsiflexion)
How to Diagnose: Clinical exam focused on muscle testing. X-rays to rule out other pathology. MRI or ultrasound to evaluate tendon.
- Rest, ice, elevation, compression
- Anti-inflammatories ( if ok to take)
- Supportive shoes
- Physical therapy
- Bracing (custom or OTC)
- If severe – immobilization in boot for 4 weeks
o If there is no tearing- certain tendons can be debrided arthroscopically
o For more advanced tendon pathology- open surgery to debride and repair tearing/thickening, possible tendon transfer.
§ Careful consideration should be given when transferring tendons as this will change push off power, side to side movement, and serving motion
Long-term prognosis: Once inflammation is under control, typically orthotics and/or bracing will keep symptoms to a minimum. Surgery recovery varies, with simple debridement taking 4-6 weeks to return to sport and more advanced procedures taking 8-12 weeks to return with bracing.
Who to call: Podiatrist, orthopedic surgeon