Your Achilles tendon is the largest in your body, so when something goes wrong, the resulting discomfort is far from subtle. At North Central Texas Foot & Ankle, the team of board-certified specialists has extensive experience helping patients identify, and remedy, Achilles tendon pain. To get to the bottom of your Achilles tendon pain, call the Decatur or Roanoke, Texas, office, or use the online scheduling tool to set up an appointment.

request an appointment

What is the Achilles tendon?

Your Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the body; it’s located at the back of your ankle, where it attaches to your large calf muscles — the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles — to the back of your heel bone. Your Achilles tendon plays a large role in balance, as well as your ability to walk, run, jump, and simply stand.

What are the most common sources of Achilles tendon pain?

The calf muscles to which your Achilles tendon is attached are extremely strong, which means they exert a considerable amount of force on your Achilles tendon. This pressure can take its toll over time, especially as you age, and your tendons lose their elasticity and strength.

In most cases, Achilles tendon pain stems from tendonitis, a condition in which tiny tears develop along your tendon, which leads to pain and inflammation. These tears typically form after wear-and-tear and age catch up with the connective tissue, which means tendonitis is more common among people who are in their 40s, 50s, and beyond.

That said, athletes can develop Achilles tendonitis at any age if they place too much stress on these tendons.

Outside of tendonitis, an acute tear or rupture, usually due to trauma, can cause Achilles tendon pain. Tears can also develop over time due to repeated stresses or new stresses (should you take up running, for example).

How is Achilles tendon pain diagnosed?

After thoroughly reviewing your symptoms, your podiatrist at North Central Texas Foot & Ankle performs a physical examination. To rule out other problems, they may order a digital X-ray. If your doctor suspects a tear, they may order an MRI to get a better idea of the extent of the problem so they can determine the next steps.

How is Achilles tendon pain treated?

Armed with a diagnosis, your podiatrist at North Central Texas Foot & Ankle designs a treatment plan with the goal of relieving your pain and helping your tendon heal. They may start out conservatively at first and recommend:

  • Rest
  • Icing
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Corticosteroid injections
  • Regenerative medicine
  • Orthotics
  • Physical therapy

If your pain persists or you have a complete rupture, your doctor may recommend surgery to repair the tendon.

To remedy your Achilles tendon pain, call North Central Texas Foot & Ankle or request an appointment using the online scheduling tool.