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Partial tear of the achilles tendon


A partially torn Achilles tendon describes an injury in which part of the Achilles tendon breaks away. When the Achilles tendon is partially torn the calf muscle and heel bone are still connected, however this connection is very weak.

If you have partially torn your Achilles tendon Chiropody.co.uk may be able to help you. At Chiropody.co.uk you will be assessed fully and a treatment plan will be formulated. The aim of podiatric treatment for a partially torn Achilles tendon is decreased pain, increased flexibility of the ankle, Achilles tendon and calf muscle and overall improvement in the function of the foot. By improving the function of the foot future injury is prevented.

What is a partial tear of the Achilles tendon?


A partial tear of the Achilles tendon occurs when part of the Achilles tendon is torn; this means that the calf muscle is still attached, albeit weakly, to the heel bone. Typically when the Achilles tendon is partially torn the central fibres of the tendon have torn away and the surrounding fibres are still attached.

What causes a partial tear of the Achilles tendon?


A partial tear to the Achilles tendon is more common in those who participate in sports that exert stress on the Achilles tendon, for example, those who participate in sports that require jumping and running. Risk factors that increase the chance of a partial tear to the Achilles tendon include:

  • Tight calf muscles
  • Sudden increase in training
  • Inappropriate or improper stretching
  • Inappropriate or worn out footwear
Any one, or a combination of the above means that you are susceptible to and Achilles injury.

What are the signs and symptoms of a partial tear of the Achilles tendon?


The most common signs and symptoms that occur if you have partially torn your Achilles tendon include the following:

  • Sudden onset of pain at the back of the ankle (sudden pain is not always apparent. Sometimes when the Achilles tendon is partially torn pain is experienced after cooling down or the next day).
  • Pain at the back of the ankle that gets worse when participating in activity that puts strain on the Achilles tendon (e.g. using stairs or walking, particularly up hill).
  • Swelling and pain at the site of the Achilles tendon.
  • Pain increases upon palpation of the Achilles tendon.
  • Stiffness first thing in the morning.
If you are experiencing any of the above you may have an injury to your Achilles tendon. It is important to seek treatment early to prevent deterioration of the tendon and the worsening of symptoms.

How is a partial tear of the Achilles tendon diagnosed?


At Chiropody.co.uk we will diagnose a partially torn Achilles tendon based on an objective and subjective assessment, followed by an assessment of the ankle and Achilles tendon. If you have partially torn your Achilles tendon you may require an ultrasound scan to confirm the diagnosis and assess severity.

Benefits of podiatry for a partial tear of the Achilles tendon?


If you have partially torn your Achilles tendon podiatry will benefit you. The pain associated with a partial tear to the Achilles tendon is due to inflammation, which has occurred through injury because too much stress was exerted onto the Achilles tendon.

Podiatry treatment will provide you with the following benefits if you have partially torn your Achilles tendon:

  • Improved mechanics of your leg and foot.
  • Improved gait
  • Relief of pain
Pain is relieved by reducing the tension on the Achilles tendon, which allows the tendon to heal. Stress and tension is reduced at the Achilles tendon with the prescription of orthoses, which alter the forces acting on the painful Achilles tendon, whilst at the same time improving the overall function of the foot and leg. All orthoses are prescribed subject to a biomechanical assessment.

If you have partially torn your Achilles tendon you may be prescribed a stretching programme by your podiatrist. A stretching programme is beneficial as it decreases any tightness that you may have in the calf muscle and Achilles tendon. If the calf muscle and Achilles tendon are flexible the risk of injury is reduced, pain is diminished and gait is improved. If pain persists, manual therapies may be recommended.

What would podiatry for a partial tear of the Achilles tendon involve?


Podiatric treatment at Chiropody.co.uk for a partial tear to the Achilles tendon follows a thorough history and biomechanical assessment. The results of the history and biomechanical assessment provide the podiatrist with the necessary information required in order to formulate a treatment plan. The aim of podiatric intervention following a partial tear of the Achilles tendon is reduced pain and improved lower limb function.

The following treatment options may be recommended at Chiropody.co.uk if you have partially torn your Achilles tendon:

Summary


A partial tear to the Achilles is most often seen in those who participate in activities that require lots of running or jumping, however anyone can partially tear their Achilles tendon. An Achilles tendon that is partially torn is one that is weakly attached to the heel bone, the most common type of partially torn Achilles tendon is when the outer fibres of the Achilles tendon are attached but the inside fibres have torn or broken away.

If you have partially torn your Achilles tendon you will experience pain and swelling at the back of the ankle, you will also find walking and other activities difficult, particularly walking up or down stairs.

If you suspect that you have partially torn your Achilles tendon visit us at Chiropody.co.uk. Our podiatrists assess, diagnose and treat a number of injuries affecting the foot, ankle and leg.

To arrange an appointment with one our podiatrists please email office@chiropody.co.uk or call 0330 088 4222.

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