Patient Education

Foot & Ankle Articles

The Causes & Treatment of Achilles Tendonitis

The Achilles tendon is the thickest and strongest tendon in the body. It is a fibrous tissue that connects the heel to the powerful calf muscles.

The Achilles tendon can support up to eight times the body’s weight when running. Yet injuries of the Achilles tendon are common in both runners and non-runners.

Achilles tendonitis, strains and ruptures can make exercising and even walking difficult and painful.

Achilles Tendinitis

The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the body, connecting the heel to the calf muscles. It is often subjected to great stress, from walking, running & jumping, making it prone to irritation. When Achilles tendinitis occurs a patient may experience pain along the tendon or heel, and swelling.
Most patients experience relief from non-surgical treatment, such as rest, exercise, physical therapy, and pain medication. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to repair, or remove, the damaged section of tendon.

Ankle Arthritis (Osteoarthritis)

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons an estimated 2 million Americans suffer from ankle osteoarthritis, a degenerative disease of the joint that causes cartilage to wear away. Until recently patients were forced to gradually give up their active lifestyles as the disease progressed and traditional treatments failed to control pain. However, advancements in ankle replacement technology are allowing patients to maintain a high quality of life by providing increased mobility.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is considered the most common cause of pain along the bottom of the heel. The plantar fascia is a ligament that runs along the bottom of the foot, supporting the arch and connecting the heel to the front of the foot. Fasciitis occurs when the ligament becomes irritated and inflamed. Runners, and people with high arches or tight calves, have an increased risk of developing plantar fasciitis.

Total Ankle Replacement

At the Blue Ridge Bone & Joint Clinic Foot and Ankle Center, we are seeing more patients seeking a long-term solution for ankle osteoarthritis that will allow them to return to the active lifestyles they once enjoyed. Patients today are simply unwilling to give up their mobility and independence.