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The Achilles tendon connects the calf muscle to the heel. It is the largest tendon in the body. If this tendon is injured, you may be unable to lift your heel when you walk.
Achilles tendon injuries always cause pain. The signs and symptoms of Achilles tendon injuries include mild to intense pain anywhere along the back of the lower leg, acute pain when squeezing the sides of the tendon, stiffness of the tendon, or nodules and swelling of the tendon. If the Achilles is completely torn, you will not be able to walk.
Receive efficient and complete care for Achilles tendon injuries in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV, at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican hospitals. Find an orthopedist or call (702) 616-4900 to learn more.
The Achilles tendon can become injured through repetitive stress or trauma, including sports injuries. Landing hard on the heel, which may happen while playing football or basketball, can rupture the tendon. Overuse from activities such as jogging also can weaken and injure the Achilles tendon.
Treatment and prevention strategies for Achilles tendon injuries depend on the severity of the injury. A fully ruptured tendon requires surgery to reconnect both ends of the tissue band. Mild Achilles tendon injuries such as tendonitis may only require rest and ice.
Your doctor at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican hospitals will recommend a treatment plan that repairs the tendon so you can get back to your active lifestyle as quickly and safely as possible.
There are several things you can do to avoid injuring your Achilles tendon. First, if your feet over-pronate (tilt to the inside, over the arch), you can wear shoes with proper cushioning and arch support that correct for this situation. Second, always take the time to warm up and stretch your calf muscles before and after working out. Stretching will help keep your Achilles long and flexible.
If you have pain in the heel area or pain that clearly comes from the Achilles tendon, do not wait to seek medical attention. Early intervention can help you avoid a serious Achilles tendon injury.