Achilles Tendon Pathology
The legendary warrior of Homer’s Iliad may have died from an arrow piercing his Achilles tendon, but Achilles injuries today have a good prognosis. Achilles tendinopathy is a common injury affecting athletes, particularly males between the ages of 30-50.
The Achilles tendon is formed by the convergence of three structures which are all muscles of the calf: medial gastrocnemuis, lateral gastrocnemius and soleus. They form a thick tendon, which insets into the calcaneus (heel bone).
What usually happens
- Mild pain after exercise or running that gradually worsens
- Morning tenderness about an inch and a half above the point where the Achilles tendon is attached to the heel bone
- A feeling of weakness in the leg
- Pain improves with a heat or exercise but recurs after running
- Change in distance speed and training gradient
- Change of running surface
- Change in footwear
- Excessive pronation (flat foot)
- Poor range of motion
- Poor muscle flexibility
Most orthopaedic surgeons would agree to a conservative approach to treating Achilles Tendinopathy before considering any invasive treatments (injections or even surgery).
Your Physiotherapist will analyse the factors causing your tendinopathy and design you a structured recovery programme adapted to your needs.